The winter is speeding towards us and before you know it, the Christmas countdown will begin. But why not make it a holiday countdown and book a trip away for you and the family or some friends?
Barcelona is just a hop, skip and a jump away, and with our conveniently located Barcelona hotel in the Poblenou district, it’s the perfect place to head for a quick, Christmassy break, especially if you’re on a budget. Here are 5 reasons why the capital of Catalonia is the place to be this Christmas:
1) The Christmas Markets
Mention Christmas markets and most people will think of Germany and gingerbread, but actually, Spain has some of the best markets in the world and the traditional Barcelona Christmas market is worth the trip by itself. If you’re wondering what to do in Barcelona, Santa Llucia Fair should be at the very top of your list. With over 300 stalls selling handmade Catalan decorations and gifts, and over 30 miles of Christmas lights, the market is quite a sight to behold. Then, the captivating shows and performances of traditional music and dance begin.
2) The Food
Spain takes Christmas food seriously and the season is all about sweetness. The best-known delicacy is probably turrón, the nougat made in all different flavours, often with nuts added. Marzipan, known as mazapan, is everywhere, and you shouldn’t leave without trying polvorones, a crumbly sort of short cake.
3) The Ice-Skating
The Plaza Catalayuna is considered the centre of Barcelona, where the old and new towns meet. Come Christmas, the square is covered with a giant outdoor ice-rink which is filled with tourists and locals alike. What could feel more like Christmas than strapping skates to your feet and seeing some of Barcelona’s sights from the ice?
4) The Shopping
Ask anyone what to do in Barcelona and the answer will probably include the word “shopping”. One of the fashion capitals of Europe is the ideal place to be just before Christmas, to buy all your presents, or just after, to take advantage of all those sales. Follow the route known as The Shopping Line, which lasts for 5km and stretches from Port Vell, along La Rambla, through the old town and the art-nouveau Eixample district, to the uptown section of Avinguda Diagonal.
5) The Christmas Atmosphere
It’s not just the events and traditions that make Barcelona at Christmas special. It’s also the unique feel of the city in winter. With stunning light displays strung up along La Rambla and Portal de l’Angel and all over the city’s smaller streets too, it’s a magic atmosphere. Combine that with the fact that even the winter days are bright and sunny, and you’ve got the perfect winter getaway. What more could you want than somewhere to wear a Santa hat at the same time as sunglasses?