La Casa dels Entremesos – The Giants Museum

There are normally around 50 giants on display

No Catalan festival would be complete without a procession of dancing giants. The papier mâché giants date back to the 14th century when they first appeared in Corpus Christi celebrations. Over the years they have been joined by “Capgrossos” (big heads), dragons and other animals. All of which can be seen dancing and whirling their way…

What to Wear in Barcelona in May

Tourists near Barcelona Cathedral May 2013

May got off to a good start this year with sunny weather and temperatures up in the twenties. In the afternoons even the locals were on the beach sunbathing. Then halfway through the month the weather turned bad, there were 4 days of heavy rain and it even snowed in the Pyrenees! The last two…

L’Ou Com Balla – Dancing Eggs !

Dancing Egg Number 5 - The Cloisters of Barcelona Cathedral

If you like quirky and unusual traditions then you’ll love L’Ou Com Balla aka The Dancing Egg which takes place every year as part of Barcelona’s Corpus Christi celebrations. Basically the idea is that an egg is placed in a fountain and dances suspended by a jet of water. There are a total of 12 eggs…

Museum of Catalan Modernism

Museum of Catalan Modernism, Barcelona

The Museum of Catalan Modernism opened in 2010 and contains furniture, paintings and sculptures from two private collections exhibited in a modernist building on Carrer Balmes. The museum includes works by most of the major exponents of the genre including Antoni Gaudi, Joan Busquets, Eusbei Arnau, Josep Llimona and others. The museum occupies 2 floors…

Hospital de Sant Pau – Barcelona’s Other Art Nouveau Building Site

Iron gates in front of the main entrance

Update – The Hospital de Sant Pau re-opened in 2014 as the Sant Pau Art Nouveau Site. Full review and tips for visitors here>> The Hospital de Sant Pau was designed by Lluís Domènech i Montaner and opened in 1930. It was financed by Barcelona city council and a substantial donation from the legacy of…

How To Use Google Maps Without Paying Roaming Charges

Using Google Maps on my Samsung Gallaxy. Note that the GPS is ON but Data is Turned OFF

Smartphones are great and one of the most useful Apps for travellers is Google Maps. If you haven’t used it yet I suggest you download it now from the Play Store and check it out. The only downside used to be that when you went abroad you got charged expensive roaming fees. Luckily last year…

What to Wear in Barcelona in April

Locals and tourists enjoying the spring sunshine on the Barcelonata beach.

April has been another month of mixed weather. The first week of the month was a mix of sunshine and showers, pretty typical for this time of year. First thing in the morning you still needed a warm jacket then by midday you could be in shirtsleeves. It rained a bit but only in short…

The Best Views Of Barcelona – El Turó de La Rovira

Looking south from the gun emplacements you get great views of Montjuic and the Sagrada Familia

At an altitude of 257 metres in the Horta-Guinardó district, the Turó de la Rovira (aka Bunkers del Carmel) offers spectacular bird’s eye views of Barcelona. Unlike many of the city´s other viewpoints, from here you get a full 360º panoramic view. You can also see along the coast as far as Mataró to the north…

Human Towers at the Sagrada Familia

The base of a Castell tower

The Festa Mayor de la Sagrada Familia (festival of the Sagrada Familia district) started this weekend. The festival lasts from the 19th of April until the 6th of May and kicked off with a display of human towers called castells in front of the Sagrada Familia Basilica. Castells are built by teams called colles who perform…

Monestir de Pedralbes – One of Barcelona’s Best Kept Secrets!

The Monestir de Pedralbes, Barcelona

The Monestir de Pedralbes is a beautiful gothic monastery which was built in 1326 by Queen Elisenda in an effort to be forgiven for her sins. Some of the most famous architects of the time worked on the project including Ramon Despuig and Berenguer de Montagut who also designed the Bascilica de Santa Maria del…

Windsurfing on the Ebro Delta

A lone windsurfer enjoys small waves and spring sunshine at Riumar

The Ebro Delta National Park is located 160km south of Barcelona. It is an important wetland habitat and home to about 300 species of birds. It is also one of Spain’s main rice growing areas. The strong north easterly Mestral winds which blow regularly from autumn to spring make the area popular with windsurfers and…

What to Wear in Barcelona in March

Plaça de Catalunya, Barcelona

As March draws to a close we take a look back at the month’s weather and more importantly, at what we’ve been wearing. March sees the transition from winter to spring and the changeable weather normally reflects this. This year has been no exception. The first of March was sunny with maximum temperatures of around…

The Roman Temple of Augustus

The Roman Temple of Augustus

Tucked away inside a medieval building in the Gothic quarter of Barcelona, these 9m high Corinthian style columns are nearly as old as the city itself. The Temple of Augustus dates back to the first century BC and was part of the Forum, at the centre of the Roman city of Barcino. Unlike the majority…

The Roger de Llúria Monument

Statue of Roger de LLúria, Barcelona

This bronze statue of Roger de Llúria was constructed in 1885 by Catalan artist Josep Reynés. The statue is located on Passeig Lluis Companys, just opposite the main entrance to the Ciutadella Park and was originally part of a series of 8 statues of Catalan heroes. Who was Roger de Llúria? Roger de Llúria was…

Sitges in Winter

Statue of Santiago Rusiñol and Ramon Casas, located near the Beach, Sitges

Sitges is a Spanish beach resort located just 35km south of Barcelona. The town is famous for it’s nightlife, beaches, carnival and the Sitges Film Festival. Sitges in the wintertime is a popular day trip for Barcelona residents who typically visit on Sunday and take a stroll along the seafront followed by lunch in one…

Surprising Street Art in Poblenou

Bird, Street Art in Poble Nou

Barcelona has lots of street art and public art, ranging from graffiti to large and impressive statues and murals by famous artists. On my way to the beach this morning I noticed this interesting series of modified road signs at the bottom of the Rambla del Poblenou. There are about a dozen of these “modified”…

The Arc de Triomf

Arc de Triomf, Barcelona

The Arc de Triomf was built in 1888 as the main entrance to the Exposición Universal de Barcelona. It was designed by the Catalan architect Josep Vilaseca i Casanovas and features sculptures by Josep Reynés, Josep Llimona and Manel Fuxa. The 30 metre high mudejar style brick arch is the focal point at the end…

Cardboard Carnival Car Costume

I saw this rather badly “parked” cardboard car costume on my way to work yesterday morning. The owner had obviously had one too many drinks during their Carnaval celebrations and decided that it was safer to leave their costume in the car park and walk home!

Microcars in Barcelona

Cute green microcar

The MUHBA (Barcelona History Museum) has several centres dedicated to the history of the city from Roman times to the present day. From the 21st of December 2012 until the 15th of March 2013 they are staging a temporary exhibition dedicated to the history of microcars in Barcelona. The exhibition consists of about 15 cars and microcars from…

Gambrinus – Barcelona’s Giant Lobster Statue

The Gambrinus lobster statue and Barcelona's Head

This funky giant prawn/lobster statue was originally part of the decor at the Gambrinus seafood restaurant. The 10m long fibreglass sculpture was designed and built by Spanish artist Javier Mariscal. When the Gambrinus restaurant closed the statue was bought by Barcelona city council, restored and now takes pride of place on Passeig Colom near the Port…

Live Music in Barcelona

Barcelona band "The Vacilons Project" playing in Sala Monasterio

If you enjoy live music then Barcelona has a lot to offer. Pretty much any band which tours Europe stops off in Barcelona. In addition to International acts, there is a thriving local music scene with bands from Barcelona and right across Spain. Venues range in size from small bars and clubs to the emblematic…