Festival in barcelona: Barcelona Festivals • The Best Festivals in Barcelona, Spain

Barcelona Festivals • The Best Festivals in Barcelona, Spain

Festivals in Barcelona

Epiphany (5th/6th January)

Largely ignored in most countries, the arrival of the three kings (wisemen, magi, geezers…) to the Messiah’s manger is keenly awaited in Spain as this is when Spaniards and Catalans exchange gifts, Christmas style. The eve of the Epiphany (the 5th January) is marked by the arrival of the wise men by boat at Port Vell (usually around 4:30pm). After that, these extravagantly dressed gentlemen set off on the “Calvacada del Reis” – a grand parade of floats replete with acrobats, clowns and elves, from which the kings dish out sweets to local kids. The route normally starts at the lower entrance of Parc de la Ciutadella, running up Carrer de Marques de l’Argentera and Via Laietana.

Carnival (February/March)

Move over Rio, Barcelona’s carnival is back and growing in popularity year by year. As in most Catholic countries carnival in Spain is the last chance to go wild before Lent, when forty days of abstinence kick in. Banned by Franco from 1936 to 1980 this vibrant festival is experiencing a healthy revival of interest in the new millennium. The culmination of the party is La Gran Rua de Carneval, when visitors can expect to see plenty of fancy dress, floats and fireworks form a grand parade down one of the city’s main streets (normally Av. Paral.lel). However, if we’re being brutally honest, the real action takes place down the road in Sitges, a picturesque coastal resort famous for its gay nightlife. It’s debauchery of the first order, with half of Barcelona’s student population heading down on the train in fancy dress. Join in at your peril! We normally highlight the Sitges Carnival in our events calendar.

Dia de Sant Jordi (23rd April)

St. George (Sant Jordi) was a busy man, and not only did he gallivant about the English countryside slaying dragons, but occasionally he would be called upon in these warmer climes to dispatch a nasty lizard or two. Such heroic behaviour saw him dubbed patron saint of Catalonia and his festival is certainly one of the most colourful in the city as the entire length of Las Ramblas turns into a flower stall – the idea being that men should purchase a rose for the dainty damsels in their life. Women meanwhile are supposed to buy men a book as the country’s legendary bard, Miguel Cervantes, died on this day. Keep reading for more things to do in April.

Books and roses are traditional gifts on Sant Jordi’s Day…

Formula One Spanish Grand Prix (May / June)

The F1 set-up roars into the region in May or June each year for the Spanish Grand Prix, which takes place at the Circuit de Catalunya in Montmelo (20kms outside Barcelona). What with qualifiers, engine checks and pretty paddock girls roaming around this becomes a three day event of fuel, flags and Ferraris. Read our article for tickets and travel info on the Spanish Grand Prix for all the practical info you need to know to attend.

Primavera Sound Festival (May/June)

This popular alternative rock and dance festival takes place in late spring/early summer each year in the epic Parc del Forum, easily accessible on the northern edge of the city. Extensive line ups mix big names such as Radiohead, Arcade Fire, Air, Orbital, The Pixies, The Cure, Pulp and Blur with swathes of fashionable indie and dance acts such as Warpaint, Chromeo, Tame Impala, Bat For Lashes and Yo La Tengo. A real music lovers’ event that attracts a glamorous international crowd, there’s also a side programme of ticketed (and sometimes free) additional concerts in nightclubs and public spaces around the city. The year 2023 is set to be a special year for Primavera, with Pet Shop Boys, Blur, New Order, Depeche Mode, Rosalia and Calvin Harris all playing. Check out our full-length guide to the festival, or head to the official website by clicking the link below:

Janelle Monae in Prince-esque performance. (Photo credit: Sergio Albert).

Sonar Festival (June)

Sonar Festival has garnered an impressive reputation as one of the world’s leading experimental electronic music festivals (which is another way of saying it’s a fantastic rave up). Obscure acts that only shoe-gazing musos have heard of rock different urban arenas (it recently moved from the ice-white MACBA museum to La Fira Montjuic due to popular demand), with the odd festival headliner, such as Chemical Brothers, Pet Shop Boys or Skrillex, thrown in for good measure. Tickets are a fraction pricey, but even if you’re penniless it’s still worth coming to Barcelona during Sonar as the entire week is marked by parties galore with a huge ‘Off programme’ of unofficial mash ups and mad happenings in bars, clubs and beaches around the city.

Cruilla Festival (July)

The music never stops in the Catalan capital, especially over summer! Cruilla is the music fest with the broadest appeal in the city, showcasing great artists from every nation, genre and era without prejudice. There’s no pretentious criteria for who comes, just great sounds, meaning even Mystic Meg can’t predict who’s coming next. For example atists who have played over the years include Asian Dub Foundation, Robert Plant, Suede, Iggy & The Stooges, Damon Albarn, Cat Power, Gogol Bordello and M.I.A. As with Primavera Sound, the action takes place at the Parc del Forum, in easy reach from the city centre.

Aural ecstasy at Cruilla

Grec Festival (Mid-June to early August)

Arguably the most highbrow of Barcelona’s big festivals, Grec invites scores of acts every summer to perform theatre, dance, music and more in sensational venues around the city such as the eponymous Grec Teatre. ‘The Greek Theatre’ was built in 1929 as a replica of the Ancient Greek amphitheatre in Epidauros and is a magical place to take in some contemporary drama under the stars. An increasing number of performances are rendered in English.

Sant Joan (23rd/24th June)

The eve of Sant Joan (aka Sant Juan/St. John, depending where you come from) is undoubtedly the biggest party night of the year in Spain’s fiesta-filled diary. This midsummer celebration is famed for it’s endless fireworks and total disregard to EU safety regulations. As the 24th is a public holiday all and sundry take the opportunity to overindulge in cerveza and everyone except granny will still be partying come sunrise. The beach is the place to be for this one.

Fireworks explode over the Mediterranean sea

Sala Montjuic (July/August)

Throughout the balmy summer nights, Barcelonins are invited up to the grassy ramparts of the formidable Montjuic fortress for a romantic picnic and jazz concert, before a night of openair cinema. Films are shown every Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 22:00, although we would advise you to buy a ticket beforehand and get there early (doors open at 20:30) to grab a great spot and enjoy the music before the screening begins. There is a bar and food stalls if you fancy refreshments, although guests are welcome to bring their own hampers full of Cava and jamon.

Pre-film picnic at Sala Montjuic

Gandules (throughout August)

Another popular open-air film festival, this one takes place in the courtyard of the CCCB every August, bringing some worthy world cinema to the good people of BCN. ‘Deckchairs’ are the mode of seating, hence the name. Most films are screened in their original language with either Spanish or Catalan subtitles.

Festa Major de Gracia (Mid-August)

The most famous of Barcelona’s district festivals (almost every barri in BCN has one during summer), is undoubtedly the Festa Major de Gracia. For just over a week in August the area’s streets are adorned with wonderful papier mache statues, woodwork ornaments and decorative lanterns and every square becomes a concert venue as the fiesta gets under full swing. Needless to say drinking is rife as bars and cafes heave with thirsty festival goers and many more swig al fresco from Don Simon cartons of sangria. A great carnival vibe.

Festa de la Merce (several days either side of 24th September)

Once upon a time (in 1687 to be precise) the city of Barcelona suffered a terrible swarm of locusts and placed all hope of deliverance in the generous bosom of Our Lady the Virgin of Mercy. When she promptly dispelled the pesky plague the council declared her patron of the city and a festival was set up in her honour. Noise and fireworks (the staple of any self-respecting Spanish festival) are the order of the day, but in addition mischievous devils need to be ambushed by the townsfolk and banished – and various other Catalan traditions are enacted. A hefty programme of concerts accompanies festivities, with many events taking place either side of the big day itself. There’s also free entrance to the Barcelona’s museums on the 24th.

L’Alternativa – Barcelona Independent Film Festival (November)

Another festival organised by the culture cats at the CCCB, L’Alternativa acts as a platform to promote new directors and original works from the world of film. To quote their website, L’Alternativa is all about exposing you to “films that shake you up, make you feel alive and make you think.” Amen.

Christmas (December)

It may be a little warm for reindeers and snowmen, but the Catalans celebrate Christmas with a lot of good cheer… and several wacky traditions uniquely their own! Like in many Catholic countries you’ll find charming nativity scenes in churches and squares, but the figure of a peasant squatting down in the corner to do a number two is unique to Catalonia. This fellow, known as the caganer, is said to bring luck. On a similar theme, instead of receiving a Christmas stocking from Santa Claus, Catalan kids beat a log with a stick until it poops out presents. Read more about these cool traditions, as well as the best Christmas markets right here.

Celebrity versions also available!

Find Your Festival Accommodation

Once you’ve decided which festival you’re going to check out, and booked your flights to Barcelona, you may want to take the traditional precaution of booking some accommodation on the side. In which case we suggest you head over to our ‘sleep’ section for some top choices on hotels, apartments and hostels.

Major Festivals Elsewhere in Spain

La Tomatina (last Weds of August)

One of Spain’s most talked about festivals, La Tomatina is the entirely bonkers tomato fight that takes place each year in Bunol, just outside Valencia and about 4 hrs drive from Barcelona. Starting at 11am, buses leave BCN sinfully early in the morning to taxi punters to Bunol in time for kick off… and boy does it kick off. Kind of like Armageddon but with a fruity twist.

Benicassim International Festival (FIB) (July)

Spain’s most famous international music festival takes place down the road from Barcelona, in Benicassim, a port town just outside Valencia. Festival-goers typically arrive several days early to camp out before the big guns arrive in the form of Oasis, Basement Jaxx and The Arctic Monkeys etc. Needless to say there are also dance tents manned by all the usual suspects, Armand Van Helden through to Carl Craig, whilst by day armies of Brits sleep off sangria hangovers on the beach and turn a lovely shade of lobster.

Monegros Desert Festival (one night in July)

Spain’s biggest rave has been rocking a patch of desert just outside Fraga for nearly 20 years now, and takes place one very long night in July every year. Typically more than 40,000 hedonists turn up to dance to world class acts from the world of electo, techno, drum and bass and dubstep during an epic 22 hour party. The good news is that you can easily arrive at the festival from Barcelona thanks to the official festival bus. Click on the blue link above for more info, or head straight to the official site…

Sanfermines (6th-14th July)

Better known in English as “The Running of the Bulls”, this controversial fiesta takes place every summer in Pamplona. A regular feature in international news, the running of six bulls and six steers down the narrow streets of the city is watched live by around one million people each year… several thousand of which risk life and limb to run with the horned beasts. The fact that it happens every morning for 8 days in a row at 8am, after a full night of drinking, is naturally a recipe for a disaster and each year brings its casualties… and occasionally fatalities. After this bloody romp through the streets, the bulls are then put to the sword in a traditional bull fight in the Pamplona arena, angering animal activists as well. If that’s not enough to put you off, it’s all great fun, as the whole city gets dressed up in white and red and toasts to Saint Fermin night and day and you could easily enjoy the party without even seeing a bull – or the tip of its horns.

Top 20 Music Festivals in Barcelona For Your Bucket List (2023)

Looking for the best music festivals in Barcelona in 2023?  Well, you’ve come to the right place!

If there’s one city I cannot say enough about…it’s Barcelona. After all, I’ve lived there, immersed myself in the culture, marveled at Gaudi’s works, inhaled the local food, drank all the sangria, and partied maybe a little too much.  Spain’s “second city” is a true melting pot. Where old meets new, traditional meets contemporary. And music festivals in Barcelona don’t miss a beat, offering a world-class experience in one of the most picturesque places on Earth.

It’s easily my favorite city in the entire world, and the vibrant music and festival scene is one of the major aspects that make Barcelona so special.  I’ve attended several events on this list already while living there during the busy Barcelona summer festival season, but I know I’ll be back again soon to cross off a few more (I’m even contemplating buy an apartment and moving back)!

So take a quick read through, and watch some of the Youtube clips to get an idea of what to expect from all these incredible Barcelona Festivals!

Top 20 Barcelona Music Festival experiences!

1) Sónar Festival 2023

The Ultimate Barcelona Music Festival For Techno Fans | Credit: Sonar Festival Barcelona

When: June 15-17, 2023

Where: Barcelona, Spain 

https://sonar. es


“Sónar Festival is an electronic and alternative music festival in Barcelona, Spain. One of the most celebrated and widely respected festivals of its kind anywhere in the world, Sónar has built a reputation for itself as a hub of experimental and engaging underground culture.

This manifests itself not just through an extensive musical program that welcomes big name acts alongside emerging talent, but also through a series of artistic installations, workshops, talks, debates and seminars. As such, the festival attracts not just music fans but also industry professionals, united in their shared desire to explore the musical and artistic cutting edge.

“There is simply no better city in the world for techno fans in Europe than Barcelona during summer time, and SONAR is the ultimate festival experience. So many different festivals and events all over Barcelona during Sonar and Sonar Off Week.”

Sónar Barcelona 2023 | First Line-up Announcement

Watch this video on YouTube

2) Primavera Sound 2023

The Most Diverse Barcelona Festival | Credit: Primavera Sound

When: June 8-10, 2023

Where: Parc del Forum, Barcelona & Madrid, Spain (Two Weekends)

https://www. primaverasound.com/?lang=en

“In the 18 years since the first edition, Primavera Sound has truly elevated itself to become one of the world’s best-known and best-loved music festivals. Taking place each spring in the city of Barcelona, as May turns to June, the festival showcases an often peerless lineup that spans musical styles and showcases the finest alternative and underground talent from across the globe.

From indie stalwarts or hiphop superstars on the Parc del Fòrum’s main stages to rising stars and an array of electronic music’s most respected figures on countless smaller stages, the festival truly has something to offer even them most discerning of music fans.”

Primavera Sound 2023 Barcelona & Madrid

Watch this video on YouTube

3) BBF: Barcelona Beach Festival 2023

The Wildest EDM Festival in Barcelona | Credit: BBF Barcelona Beach Festival

When: July 2023

Where: Platja del Fòrum, Barcelona

https://bcnbeachfestival. com/?lang=en


“Barcelona Beach Festival is a huge electronic music festival, featuring some of the mainstream’s biggest stars. As the name suggests, BBF takes place on the sands of the world-famous coastal city, transforming the Platja del Fòrum into one of Europe’s wildest party spots for over 12 hours.

The stacked lineup of dance music giants is matched by the investment in production, with the imposing single stage rising high above the beach complete with enormous soundsystem and an array of special effects to make things go off with a bang.”

Barcelona Beach Festival – Aftermovie 2016

Watch this video on YouTube


Brunch in the Park – Barcelona Festivals 2023

Photo via Brunch in the Park Facebook

When: Each Sunday during summer

Where: Jardins de Joan Brossa, Barcelona

http://barcelona.brunch-in. com/city/

“Every Sunday from June til September local and international DJ’s play at the event called Brunch in the Park. The event takes place in Jardins de Joan Brossa at Montjuic, with a beautiful view over the city. Bring your friends and forget it’s the last day of weekend, and make it a great Sunday!”

Aftermovie Brunch -In the City 2019: Despierta

Watch this video on YouTube

5) Cruïlla Festival 2023

Credit: Cruïlla Festival Barcelona

When: July 5-8, 2023

Where: Parc Del Forum, Barcelona

Home 2022


“Cruïlla is a unique opportunity to discover the best music in good company, in a nice and neat environment near the sea and with a superb atmosphere. You will also find a varied gastronomic selection from all around the world, chill out zones to rest between concerts and an auteur market.

“The Cruïlla Festival will be held from 5 to 8 July in Barcelona’s Parc del Fòrum. An emblematic city and an unbeatable setting: in the open air and facing the sea. It is an unrepeatable experience. Based on music and accompanied by arts, performance and comedy shows.

There is a place where music of all styles comes from everywhere to make all audiences sing and dance. Whether they are big international artists or small emerging bands, whether they are masters of salsa and bachata, singer-songwriters, rappers… they all meet at Cruïlla, the festival for people who love music.”

Festival Cruïlla 2018 – AFTERMOVIE

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6) Off Sonar Festival 2023

Credit: Off Sonar Festival in Barcelona

When: June 15-18, 2023

Where: Various locations, Barcelona

OFFSónar 2022


“Priding itself of bridging the gap between digital culture and the electronic music scene, the festival takes a unique format experimenting with creativity and technology to create elaborate events for over 120,000 people.

Whilst Sónar itself is most definitely a must-see, it could be argued that Sónar’s ‘Off-Parties’ are like the cooler, younger sibling of the original festival Barcelona’s ‘Off-Week’ or ‘Off-Sónar’ parties attract just as many people to the city as the festival itself.

In comparison with Sónar, which takes place in two main locations, Sónar by Day, at Fira Montjuïc, and Sónar By Night at Fira Gran Via de L’Hospitalet, ‘Off-parties’ take place in a variety of different locations including hotel rooftops, terraces, bars, nightclubs, and most famously in the open-air architectural museum, The Poble Espanyol.”

Ida Engberg Live From Drumcode Off Sonar Barcelona

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 7) Vida Festival

Credit: Vida Festival Barcelona

When: June 29- July 1, 2023

Where: Vilanova i la Geltrú, Catalonia


https://www. facebook.com/vidafestival/

“Vida is an intimate alternative and indie music festival held in the Spanish region of Catalonia. Situated around an hour’s drive south of Barcelona, the festival inhabits the picturesque coastal city of Vilanova i la Geltrú, making use of the beautiful woodland, beaches and architecture for three days of fantastic performances.

The festival celebrates its fifth edition in 2023, having played host to the likes of Lana Del Rey, Primal Scream, Wilco and The Flaming Lips since its inception back in the summer of 2014.”

VIDA 2017 Aftermovie

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8) BAM — Barcelona Acció Musical

Credit: BAM — Barcelona Acció Musical Festival

When: September

Where: Various locations, Barcelona



“BAM means “Musical Action Barcelona” and promotes, from already 18 editions, the best independent artists. From the best folk to the best electronic vibes, going through rock, pop and indi sounds. It is held at the end of September in different stages located all around Barcelona.”

Filastine Live at Barcelona Acció Musical, £00T Tour 2012

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9) Festival de Cap Roig

Photo via Facebook

When: July-August 2023

Where: Calella de Palafrugell, Girona



“Our open-air stage with a 2,118 spectator capacity plays host to the world’s best musical artists in a spectacular natural setting spread over 17 hectares in front of the sea in one of the Mediterranean region’s most important botanical gardens.”

Vídeo Resum del Festival de Cap Roig 2018

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10) Circuit Festival Barcelona

Credit: Circuit Festival Barcelona

When: August 5-13, 2023

Where: Various locations, Barcelona

https://circuitfestival. net/barcelona/


Circuit Festival Barcelona is their Biggest International Gay Event

“Circuit Festival means discovering the best music on earth, meeting with friends from all over the world and making new ones, celebrating cultural and affective diversity, discovering a city that has an endless leisure and cultural offer, visiting beautiful beaches and incredible places.

But, above it all, we want Circuit Festival to be the place where your dreams can come true. We’ll bring you 11 amazing days full of what you like best: 1 amazing city, 16 mind-blowing parties, 40 world class DJs and thousands of people from all over the world.”

Circuit Festival 2019 • Water Park Day • Official Aftermovie

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11) Guitar Festival BCN

Credit: Guitar Festival BCN

When: September 2023

Where: Various locations, Barcelona

https://www. guitarbcn.com/es/festival


“This may essentially be a festival based on only one instrument, but the sounds, performers and styles on the programme could scarcely be more wide-ranging.

The skill of the organisers, leading Spanish music promoters The Project, in bringing together Catalan, Spanish, European and international performers from a variety of musical genres is quite something. Flamenco to pop, classic Cuban to contemporary Catalan, acoustic and electric, emerging and veteran acts – all this and more fills the many city venues that take part in Guitar BCN.”

Guitar Bcn 2018

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12) Rock Fest Barcelona

Credit: Barcelona Rock Festival

When: June/ July 2023

Where: Santa Coloma de Gramenet, Barcelona



“Since its first edition in 2014, Rock Fest Barcelona has quickly established itself as one of Europe’s top rock and metal music festivals. The line-up gets better each year and has included big name acts like Aerosmith, Deep Purple, Ozzy Osbourne, Iron Maiden, Whitesnake and Alice Cooper.

In addition to an extensive lineup of acts covering the entire spectrum of hard rock and heavy metal. Barcelona Rock Fest also enjoys a privileged location which allows festival-goers to combine a 4 day music festival with a visit to one of Europe’s most vibrant and cosmopolitan cities.”


Watch this video on YouTube


Pride Barcelona 2023

When: June 2023

Where: Various locations, Barcelona



“One of Spain’s most popular gay festivals. Pride Barcelona brings together the local LGBT community, friends and allies to the Gay Village for a weekend of culture, activities and parties. The highlight of Pride Barcelona is the parade on Saturday afternoon, followed by a massive party weekend that goes on until late.”

PRIDE Barcelona 2017 – Orgullo Barcelona 2017

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San Miguel Mas i Mas Festival

Photo via Facebook

When: August

Where: Various locations, Barcelona


“Based on the philosophy of offering top-class cultural activities in a month when cultural activity in the city is at its lowest, in 2003 the Mas i Mas Group, backed by the brewers San Miguel, set up a music festival which is now a classic of August nights in Barcelona.”

San Miguel Mas i Mas Festival Mas i Mas / Vídeo Resum

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15) Paral•lel Festival

Photo via Facebook

When: September 2023

Where: Guardiola de Berguedà, Barcelona

https://www. parallelfestival.com


“Parallel Festival is an experimental, ambient and techno music festival near Barcelona. A highly curated lineup takes boundary-pushing sounds through three days and on a single stage.

Paral·lel Festival has curated a musical selection based largely on uniqueness, promoting differentiated and disruptive musical paradigms. DJs from the international scene will explore experimental, ambient, and techno musical aesthetics over the course of 3 days on a single stage. Each performance will organically link the previous and subsequent performance, forming a narrative that weaves through a balanced day-and-night program.

Our gathering takes place on the premises of a rural Catalan house located in the Pre-Pyrenees, one hour and thirty minutes away from the city of Barcelona. The space is huge, allowing us to offer distinct areas for performances, camping, rest, food, and beverage services.

We staunchly reject the motto “the more, the merrier”, and thus believe in a limited capacity, allowing us to prioritize audience comfort and the particularly intimate atmosphere of the festival. If you were with us last year, you know what we are talking about. Otherwise, join us this year and experience it for yourself!”

Paral·lel Festival 2017 Official After Movie

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International Jazz Festival Barcelona

When: October / November

Where: Various locations, Barcelona


The Barcelona International Jazz Festival is one of the city’s longest-running musical events.

“For 50 years Barcelona has played host to an annual jazz festival. The festival takes place in venues all over town and you will need to buy individual tickets for each event – there is not one ticket that covers the whole event.

Other year’s saw the likes of Wayne Shorter, Jimmy Cobb, Marcus Miller and Kings of Convenience on the line-up. Depending on your budget, you should be able to find something on the line-up to quench your thirst to listen to some live jazz music – venues vary from the grand Palau de la Musica to small smoky bars like Jamboree and Harlem Jazz Club.

Performances take place in many different settings, such as the Palau de la Música Catalana, the Auditori del Fòrum, the Conservatori del Liceu, and other concert halls. The event attracts prestigious jazz musicians from Spain and around the world.

Just For Funk at International jazz Festival of Barcelona 2017 playing golden

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Festival Grec

Photo via Grec Festival Facebook

When: July 2023

Where: Various locations, Barcelona



“The Festival Grec de Barcelona (or Grec Festival of Barcelona) is an international theatre, dance, music and circus festival. Over the course of its history, this long-standing event has become a major summer attraction in Barcelona.

The festival pursues a two-fold mission: firstly, to stage the most outstanding works by Catalan artists and companies, providing them with support by producing their shows for performance at the festival; and, secondly, to present all the most interesting shows from Spain and the rest of the world every year.

Just For Funk at International jazz Festival of Barcelona 2017 playing golden

Watch this video on YouTube


Festival Jardins de Pedralbes

Photo via Festival Jardins Pedralbes Facebook

When: June / July 2023

Where: Pedralbes Palace Gardens, Barcelona

ALMA | Festival Jardins Pedralbes

“Only created six years ago, the Festival Jardins de Pedralbes has enjoyed a rapid rise to success thanks to three key features. The first is the setting. Pedralbes Palace is a splendid 1920s building located in the uptown part of the city, and its landscaped gardens of fountains, statues, lawns and many types of flora, the perfect place to host the festival’s concerts.

The second key is the programme. From esteemed stars such as Tom Jones, Zaz, Angus & Julia Stone, Jessie J, to cult figures including Simple Minds or Goran Bregovic and local acts like Miguel Ríos, Sara Baras, Niña Pastori, Ainhoa Arteta & Josep Carreras, Miguel Poveda or Pastora Soler, the bill is always carefully curated. The third one is the special day dedicated to families, with workshops, musical activities, concerts and much more.”

Aftermovie 2017 – V Festival Jardins Pedralbes

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19) Festival Castell de Peralada

Photo via Facebook

When: July / August 2023

Where: Various locations, Barcelona


“The festival has been held every year for 32 years without fail, and I am immensely proud to see how a small idea that began as a passionate musical adventure has become a consolidated, benchmark international event that enjoys recognized prestige.”

Acosta Danza de Carlos Acosta a Festival de Peralada 2019

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De Cajon! Flamenco Festival Barcelona

When: January / February 2023

Where: Various locations, Barcelona

https://www. barcelona.com/barcelona_city_guide/festivals_barcelona/barcelona_music_festivals/de_cajon_flamenco_festival_barcelona

“The De Cajón!Flamenco Festival brings flamenco’s biggest stars to different places in the city of Barcelona.

It has been held during 6 editions and it lasts almost three months! Enjoy the best flamenco in Barcelona!”

Festival Flamenco ¡De Cajón! Rueda De Prensa

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Barcelona Music Festival That May Return in 2023-2024

There are a couple festivals that used to hold events in Barcelona but looks like they aren’t organizing anymore, but I wanted to give them some recognition in case they decide to throw another Barcelona Music Festival in the future!

DGTL Barcelona

When: August (Future Dates TBA)

Where: Parc del Fòrum, Barcelona


“DGTL Barcelona is the Spanish edition of the iconic techno festival, held in the country’s second city. With four stages spread across the famous Parc del Fòrum, each replicating the unmistakable industrial aesthetic of the brand, the festival showcases the most respected and exciting talent from techno’s vibrant underground. As ever, the attention to detail extends beyond the festival’s musical program to the lighting, artistic installations and cutting edge sound systems.”

DGTL Barcelona 2018 – Official Aftermovie

Watch this video on YouTube

Wake Up Call Barcelona

When: September

Where: W Hotel Barcelona, Barcelona

“Upgrade your festival experience at W Barcelona as today’s hottest artists ignite the party with electrifying sets, intimate performances and luxurious amenities along the Barceloneta boardwalk. W

ake Up Call is a multi-day music festival exclusively for Starwood Preferred Guest® (SPG®) and Marriott Rewards® members. In 2018, we gave the festival experience a luxe upgrade by taking over W Hotels in Hollywood, Barcelona and Bali, getting members closer to the music with insider access.

Am I Missing any epic Music Festivals in Barcelona…?

I’m always trying to keep these articles up to date with the best information, so please do feel free to email me with any new or awesome Barcelona music festivals that I didn’t include!  There are honestly new events, concerts, and festivals in Barcelona every weekend during the summer, so it can be hard to keep track of them all!

Looking for more epic festivals and parties around the world…?

If you’re making your way over to Europe this summer for festival season, you really will have a hard time nailing down which festivals you’ll attend!  I’ve written heaps of fun articles about festivals in Europe, so check out a few of these below to help plan your next international festival!

  • Top 15 Music Festivals in Spain to Experience Before You Die
  • Top 16 Music Festivals in Portugal To Experience Before You Die
  • The Best 15 Music Festivals in Iceland To Experience Before You Die
  • Top 18 Music Festivals in Scotland For Your Bucket List
  • The 10 Best Music Festivals in Leeds To Experience Before You Die
  • Top 30 Music Festivals In Europe
  • 13 Lesser Known Camping Festivals in Europe to Experience This SUmmer
  • 44 Perfect Festival Accessories, Gear, and Festival Must Haves

Thanks for reading about these Barcelona Festivals!

If you’re not already, be sure to follow along on my Facebook & Instagram for more of my adventures around the world.   I’m actually planning on spending a decent amount of time in Spain in the future, and will be documenting my trips and festivals well on social-media!


Festivals and Carnivals in Barcelona

Sonar Festival © Christian Bertrand / Shutterstock


This massive carnival begins on February 20th and is accompanied by noisy festivities that span all of Barcelona. The event serves as an occasion for locals to have fun and treat themselves to various delicacies on the eve of the 40-day fast. At this time, all over the city you can find stalls with street food – tortillas, tapas, fried sausages – not a single gourmet will be left hungry. The main entertainment program takes place on Sunday. Participants are waiting for a masquerade ball, performances, competitions and a lot of people in unusual outfits. On the same evening, the city will meet King Karnestoltes, who will arrive to cheer the people and open a fashion show. And on Ash Wednesday, people will say goodbye to carnival until next year with a ritual called the Sardine Funeral.

Carnestoltes Carnival © Iakov Filimonov / Shutterstock


Every year in mid-August, the streets of Gràcia are transformed beyond recognition for a whole week. Residents select themed decor and take the matter very seriously. So don’t be surprised if you see a giant dinosaur, glowing jellyfish or paper cartoon characters in the alley. The townspeople do all this in order to compete with each other for the main prize and the title of the most beautiful street. Preparation for the holiday lasts a whole year. In addition to the streets themselves, people decorate balconies and windows, and the most inventive resident of the area receives a prize. Throughout the week, music sounds here, various competitions and performances are held. By the way, street food and alcohol during the festival are usually much cheaper.

Gràcia © devourbarcelonafoodtours. com / Shutterstock

Primavera Sound

Primavera Sound is one of the main festivals not only in Barcelona, ​​but throughout the world. It usually takes place in late May or early June in the Forum Park (Parc del Fòrum) and lasts three days. During Primavera, about 7 stages are equipped here, designed so that the musicians can be clearly seen from anywhere. The festival attracts lovers of different musical styles: alternative, indie, electronic, pop and dance music, hip-hop, folk, jazz and others. Over the years, such performers as The White Stripes, The XX, Pet Shop Boys, Portishead, Mac Demarco, Pixies and James Blake have performed at Primavera.

Primavera Festival © Christian Bertrand / Shutterstock


This is literally the most colorful festival in Barcelona! According to an old Indian tradition, during Holi, people throw handfuls of multi-colored powder at each other, wishing everyone good luck. Bright pollen symbolizes the arrival of spring, when everything blooms around. Previously, it was made from paste, turmeric and flower extracts, but now all this is being replaced with hypoallergenic synthetic materials. The festival takes place in the Forum Park and is accompanied by live music performed by the best Spanish DJs. There are also bars and food courts on site. The date of the event changes every year. When going to Holi, it is better to wear white clothes that you do not mind getting dirty – the colors on it will look brighter.

Indian Holi Festival © Iakov Filimonov / Shutterstock

Beer Festival

The largest beer festival has been held since 2012. In mid-March, residents and guests of Barcelona have the opportunity to try new unique varieties of craft drink and get acquainted with the culture of brewing from different countries. The festival takes place on the territory of the exhibition center La Farga de L’Hospitalet de Llobregat and lasts 2 days. In addition to classic light and dark beer, you will be offered berry, fruit, creamy, salty, sour, coffee and other flavors here. In addition, several food courts with different variations of hearty snacks are installed on the territory. The organizers are equipping areas for contests and photo shoots, as well as venues for musicians to perform. At the end of the event, an awards ceremony is held for the brewers who have scored the most points for their drinks.

Beer Festival © Christian Bertrand / Shutterstock

Festes de la Mercè

Every year at the end of September, one of the main festivals in Barcelona is La Mercè. This holiday is held in honor of the patron saint of Merce, who, according to legend, at the end of the 17th century saved the city from the invasion of locusts. As part of the festival, large-scale processions, dances in costumes of life-size puppets, theatrical performances, concerts and fireworks are held throughout the city. The holiday program changes every year, but some of its components remain unchanged. Among them are the construction of a tower of people (Castel), a parade of giants and a fire show. La Merce takes place in more than 10 venues. The exact list of locations can be found on the official website of the festival.

La Merce Festival © happyinspain.com

Fiesta de Sant Medir

The sweetest festival of Sant Medir takes place every year on March 3rd in the Gracia area. On this day, horse-drawn carts pass through the streets of the district, from which tons of caramel sweets are pouring. To escape the “sweet rain”, many people even come with umbrellas. Of course, San Medir, like other similar festivals, is not complete without colorful parades, performances, concerts and entertainment. And in the evening, the city authorities arrange large-scale fireworks in the Jardines de Gracia. Such a holiday will especially appeal to children and leave vivid impressions.

San Medir Prizdnik © belocaltours.com

Light Festival (Llum BCN)

In mid-February, the streets of the Poblenou district turn into real open-air art objects for 3 days. During the Llum BCN festival, you can watch amazing light installations created by both famous designers and art students, as well as various light shows. This spectacle is really worth a visit in the evening in Poblenou. The first Light Festival was held here in 2012. The main idea was to highlight the beauty of the city’s buildings with unique lighting effects. Today, the main goal of the organizers of the event is to completely transform the area and help residents see Barcelona in a completely different guise.

Barcelona Light Festival © happyinspain.com

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Primavera Sound Music Festival 2023 Barcelona: Basic Information

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Primavera Sound is rapidly becoming one of the most popular music festivals in Barcelona. It is increasingly renowned for offering some of the most innovative and forward-thinking lineups of any festival in Europe. This is a festival for true music lovers.

I’ve been attending the Primavera Sound festival for the last three years and decided it was time for someone to answer all the practical questions about the festival. If you are going to Primavera, it will be useful to know everything you need before the trip. There’s nothing worse than standing in line for tickets for an hour while your favorite band is playing on stage, only to find out you were in the wrong line at all!

This article provides a general description of the Primavera Sound Music Festival, line-up news, ticketing advice, directions to the Primavera Sound Festival venue, lodging and food information.

Primavera Sound Festival Brief

As you might have guessed from Primavera’s location, there are no soft grass areas here. The festival is held in a purpose-built open-air venue called the Forum. Initially, this place by the sea was built for the international convention – the Universal Forum of Cultures. This is a large open-air venue with concrete floors and large auditoriums, which are ideal for holding a festival, because there is no bare earth and dirt under your feet, but you can clearly see the musicians on the stage. There is no camping on Primavera, so you will need to find accommodation somewhere in Barcelona.

Primavera 2023 dates

01 June 2023 – 03 June 2023.

List of Primavera


A complete list can be seen on the official Primavera Sound website.

Tickets for Primavera Sound

Weekly pass
This is the most complete ticket, giving access to all events during the entire duration of the festival.

Festival ticket sales points

Tickets can be ordered by phone or online. Tickets for Primavera Sound are sold through various ticket shops. It is worth noting that most of these shops include a booking fee in the ticket price. The amount of the fee depends on the store where the tickets are purchased.

Ticket prices

Week pass: €325.00

Directions to the festival venue: Parc del Fòrum

The Primavera Sound Festival is held at a place known as the “Forum”. The famous blue building “Barcelona Fórum”, located in the center of this place, is its most distinctive feature. It’s hard to miss – it looks like a giant sponge with bright blue and mirrored accents.

If you’re a dedicated Primavera Sound fan, you’ll want to stay at one of the hotels near the festival site (see below). However, do not forget that the venue of the festival is a 50-minute walk from the city center, so if you stay in one of the local hotels, you will not see Barcelona. However, while waiting for the festival, you will be in close proximity to the beach.

Barcelona Forum
Plaça Levant

Driving directions showing walking routes to the Forum or Museu Blau from the nearest metro station

Barcelona Princess Hotel

AC Barcelona Forum Hotel

Vincci Marítimo Hotel Barcelona

Hilton Diagonal Mar Barcelona Hotel

Condal Mar Hotel

Buildings Forum
Plaça Leonardo da Vinci, 4-5

Parking BSM Plaça Forum

Besos – Mar Metro

El Maresme Forum Metro

Parking BSM Garcia Faria

This map is copyrighted and protected, copying is prohibited.

Parking near Parc del Fòrum (Plaça del Fòrum)

Bus ride to Primavera Sound Festival.

Buses to Primavera

There are regular buses from the center of Barcelona to the Forum building. It is worth noting that these buses start at 06:30 and finish around 23:15. Thus, these buses will suit you if you are going to listen to the bands playing at the festival during the day. Buses travel through the city from the Zona Universitaria. They go every 6 – 12 minutes.

Bus route between Forum and Barcelona city center:

Follow the link to open the route.

Bus: h26

Subway ride to the festival

Fortunately, there is a metro station near the festival site. When you get off the subway, it’s very easy to figure out where to go – just follow the crowd towards the big blue building.

On Thursday, the subway closes at 00:00 midnight and starts running at 05:00, and on Friday the subway closes at 02:00 and starts at 05:00. On Saturdays, the metro operates around the clock. When the metro closes, you can leave the festival without any problems by bus (see below).

The metro schedule can be found in our article about the Barcelona Metro.

Metro: El Maresme Fórum (Yellow Line, L4)


There is a tram stop right next to the festival site. This is the T4 tram line. This is a convenient way to get to the festival, depending on where you live. On Thursday, the tram stops at 00:00 midnight, and on Fridays and Saturdays, the tram runs until 05:00.

For complete information about the tram, see our El Tram article. The article contains links to a list of tram stops and timetables, plus information on buying tickets.


Taxi from the center of Barcelona (Plaza Catalunya) to the festival site takes approximately 20 minutes. Taxis are a smart choice if there are a lot of you and you don’t want to push around on public transport.

At the Primavera Sound exit, taxis can be hard to find. Depending on the time of day, many people will try to hail passing taxis.

Walking to the festival

Due to the location of the Forum, the walk from the center of Barcelona can be long but pleasant. The Forum is located at the northernmost point of Barcelona’s long stretch of beaches. Thus, if you head towards Barceloneta beach ( Metro: Barceloneta – Yellow Line, L4) in the centre, you can walk the promenade in 60 minutes (depending on how many times you stop for a beer!) and reach the Forum building. It’s a long walk, but if you’re in the mood to walk along the promenade, admiring the beautiful blue water and the surrounding scenery, then you’ll love it.

If you plan to regularly travel to the festival by public transport (metro, bus or tram), it is best to buy a T-Casual pass. This ticket will allow you to make 10 trips for less than if you bought individual tickets. All the details are in our article about public transport.

Housing near Primavera Sound

As the Forum hosts conferences and conventions all year round, it is surrounded by a large selection of hotels. However, most of them are designed for business people, which is reflected in prices. In addition, the rooms in these hotels are quickly sold out, because the musical groups from the festival and their retinues settle there. We have prepared several reviews of hotels located within a five-minute walk from the festival venue:

Hotel Barcelona Princess is a four star hotel located directly opposite the Forum building. This is where many musicians stop.


Hotel AC Barcelona Forum is a four-star hotel with many amenities. It is less than five minutes walk from the festival site.

Hotel Diagonal Port – This hotel is located a little further from the festival site – about 10 – 15 minutes walk. However, this is a more affordable three-star hotel.

A list of hotels near the festival site and their reviews can be found in our guide to hotels in the Poblenou area.

If you decide to stay closer to the center, you will have a wide choice – from cheap hotels to rented accommodation and hostels.

Here are some suggestions for those looking for cheaper accommodation or those traveling in a group:

For more information about cheap hotels and good discounts on accommodation, see our guide to cheap hotels.

Find out more about the cheapest hotels and hostels in Barcelona on our cheap accommodation list page.

For group travelers, renting an apartment can be the cheapest and most convenient accommodation option in Barcelona. In general, apartments in Barcelona are very good. However, do not forget that the longer you live in a rented apartment, the cheaper it costs you per night. Therefore, if you only need to stay for the weekend, then a rented apartment is not the best choice. See our recommendations for finding a reliable real estate agency in Barcelona.

Meals during the festival

One of the most uncomfortable aspects of the Primavera Sound festival is the food. On the territory of the festival there is a whole area given over to eateries. There is an open-air food court with a large selection of stalls selling everything from noodles to burgers. However, food is sold at inflated prices. For example, a simple sandwich that you can buy in the city for €2.00 will likely cost around €5.00 or €6.00 ​​at the festival.

Fortunately, you can bring your own food with you. So it makes sense to plan ahead and bring picnic supplies with you. Before the crowds gather, especially in the early evening, there is a lot of free space at the festival. What could be better than listening to your favorite band in the sunset while munching on bread and cheese from your local supermarket?

You can also have a bite to eat in the center before going to the festival. I will list a few budget establishments in the center of Barcelona.

Maoz – They sell falafels to take away. You can choose to fill the pita to the brim with a whole range of additives.

Carrer de Ferran, 13
08002 Barcelona, ​​España.

Only plastic water bottles without caps can be brought into the festival grounds. This is strictly monitored. Therefore, if you want to drink something at the festival, you will need to calculate your budget. The price of drinks at the festival is higher than usual, but you will not have alternatives.

Other events during the Primavera Sound Festival

It is worth noting that there will be other events taking place in clubs and bars throughout Barcelona during the festival. Some of them will be official events from the organizers of the festival. These events will be available with a ticket from Primavera Sound (only if you have a ticket for the entire weekend). Stay tuned for announcements on the official Primavera Sound website.

In addition, many unofficial club parties and other events will be organized in honor of the Primavera Sound Festival. Look out for flyers and posters hanging around town advertising parties you might like.

What to do in order not to be denied entry to the festival

They may not be allowed into the festival for several seemingly insignificant reasons. In order to get to the festival without any problems, it is better to familiarize yourself with them in advance.

Cameras and video cameras

If you have a professional camera (reflex camera) or video camera with you, you will not be allowed to the festival. If you want to use professional equipment, then you first need to get official permission from the organizers. If you just have a smartphone or a small soap dish that fits in your pocket, then there will be no problems.

Can I bring my own drinks?

You will not be allowed into the festival if you bring something other than water with you. But that’s not all: water should be in a plastic bottle without a cap. Therefore, people with water in glass containers will not be allowed to enter the festival either.