Nightlife in Barcelona

After General Franco’s death in 1975, Spain started to enjoy a new lease of life and the Fiesta (party) became an integral part of the Spanish way of life. The capital, Madrid, started the new wave of serious partying in the early 80´s and then from 1985, the Catalans really exploited the idea of organizing parties in the famous white Island Ibiza.

Other cities, generally in the south like Marbella and Benidorm followed suit, building huge apartment blocks and hotels to cater for the hoards of foreigners looking for 2 weeks of sun, sea, sangria and fiesta.

It seems Barcelona never really wanted to offer the cheap 2 week holiday and instead opted for the more reputable tourist. However this all changed after the Barcelona Olympics in 1992, and it is safe to say Barcelona is now one of the most visited European cities visited by tourists looking for some serious fiesta.

Barcelona’s streets system is very similar to New York’s street grid system, that is to say, every thing is constructed around a block system and the borders of each area within Barcelona are very well defined.

The same can be said for its nightlife. Different areas offer different styles of music and concepts. Poble Nou has bars and nightclubs which cater for rockers and heavy metal music is the popular vibe in this area. Having said that Razzmatazz, probably the biggest club in Barcelona and most forward thinking, is situated right in the middle of all the head banging.

The Port Olímpic area has 2 sections, divided by the famous Arts Hotel. To the left of the hotel (facing the sea) is a strip of bars and discos offering free shots hip hop, commercial dance and reggaeton to all the passers by. Its does resemble the more tacky cheap side of night clubbing and the odd bit of trouble is always a possibility.

However, to the right of the hotel one can find a more sophisticated clubbing experience with bars and clubs like Shoko, CDLC and Opium Mar offering designer clubbing at its best.

Las Ramblas is 100% geared up for the tourist with lots of Irish/English pubs dotted around plus a few nightclubs in Plaça Reial, Las Ramblas and Nou de la Rambla.

Apollo, on Nou de la Rambla, is the exception with various clubs nights playing reggae to techno on any given night.

The gay scene is alive and kicking in an area called Eixample (better known as Gayxample), with most of the bars and clubs located on Concejo de Ciento street.

As we move north of Diagonal, the clubbing experience radically changes. The streets north of Diagonal, such as Aribau, Tuset, Maria Cubi and Lincoln, theoretically have clubs for the middle/upper class Catalans. Clubs such as Sutton and Luz de Gas purposefully make entrance difficult and will use any excuse in the book to not let you in if they do not know you or do not like your style of dressing. Finally on Tibidabo Hill there are a few bars which have great views of the city and are generally frequented by couples or lovers.

When I arrived in Barcelona I was shocked to hear nightclubs don’t get going until 3.30 A.M. and close at 6 A.M. In general people eat dinner around 10 P.M. and hit the bars around mid-night. It’s not uncommon to meet up with friends at 1 A.M. to start the night. It does take a while to get use to especially if you are used to going out at 8 P.M. which is the case in many countries.

But it does make sense and is dictated by the weather. It’s simply too hot to eat a big meal at 7 P.M. and too hot to start drinking at 8 P.M. Prices do vary from bar to bar and club to club. In fact due to the tourist boom in Barcelona the prices have risen drastically over the last 10 years. In the more fashionable areas it’s hard to buy a beer under 6 euros or a long drink under 10 euros. In the more down to earth bars a beer can cost as little as 2.50 euros and a long drink 6 euros. It’s definitely worth while finding some cheap bars to start the night off.

Previously I mentioned in some areas the clubs are quite difficult to get into. The security staff in Barcelona in general does not have such a bad reputation. There might happen some isolated incidents but I rarely see trouble and if it does occur it is dealt with swiftly and fairly.

Also the government wisely introduced a new law in 2008 obliging all security staff to register with the town hall. All bouncers also have to take an exam and are not allowed continue working in the security game if they fail the exam.

I have to admit 10 years ago Barcelona’s clubbing scene was more innocent, less synthetic and freer. Numerous bars beside the famous statue of Christopher Columbus have closed down and 2 clubbing institutions La Paloma and Danzatoria have been forced to say last orders due to pressure from local residents.

Having said this new clubs have emerged and coupled with the international festivals such as Sonar and naturally Barcelona still remains one of the greatest European clubbing cities.

Barcelona Travel

One of the known trading spots in Europe is Bilbao. This is the place that businessmen love to visit. Aside from the official trading agenda, they also get to enjoy the city’s modernized facilities and infrastructure. The weather in Bilbao is extreme during the summer and winter seasons. You have to be prepared for extreme heat and the extreme cold during these two seasons. Although this may sound discouraging, when you get to Bilbao, you will enjoy what the city offers. It will be more than just trading and business. You also have a place to relax and express your interest, adventure and fun.

Things to Do

Shopping

If you are a shopping maniac, Bilbao is the place for you. There are good shopping destinations that will make you fill your shopping bags. You can visit the Mercado de la Ribera for its fresh produce. You will enjoy the freshness of its vegetables and fruits. Also, visit the Sofiartx and be amazed at the many unique items that you can bring home as souvenirs. You can also go the Centro Comercial Max and enjoy a big mall with 150 shops where you can buy almost anything. In Bilbao, you will experience the ‘shop till you drop’ feeling because of the many choices.

Tour
Appreciate the beauty of the arts in a tour to Bilbao’s monuments and museums. Visit the Guggenheim Museum and see the many different contemporary artworks of local and international artists.
You can also appreciate the grandeur of church architecture in Saint Vincent church, Basilica of Begona, Basque Museum and Santiago Cathedral.

Dining
Basque cuisine is what you will also enjoy in Bilbao. The many delicious Spanish dishes are available for your delight in the restaurants and bars in the city. It is a lively and active city for diners and for those who love to have night fun and enjoyment.

As Bilbao is known for trading and business, it is also a favorite by locals and tourists from all parts of the world. You will see the rich Spanish heritage, enjoy the best Spanish cuisine, explore the natural sceneries, and enjoy some fun and adventure as you take your vacation. This will be a trip that you will always remember as there are many opportunities for creating and capturing memories with friends and your family. The next time you will have to plan your next vacation, consider Bilbao in your list. It will be worth it.

Wondrous Barcelona

Barcelona is one of the most beautiful cities in Spain that deserve to be visited anytime by anyone. The city has wonderful monuments, art galleries, museums and restaurants that will water your mouth before you even order anything. There are wonderful natural sites here as well as historic grounds that will leave you yearning for more.

L’Eixample suburb

Overpopulation in Barcelona’s Old Town saw the city’s expansion towards the Place Catalunya on the North. This suburb was given the name L’Eixample which means “The Extension” and it was adorned with very beautiful architectural designed buildings. The work was done by Art Nouveau architects and has got something to offer the desiring eyes.

The suburb hosts the church Sagrada Familia which is full of controversies and is still unfinished because its architect died suddenly. This serves as a monument for the architect Antoni Gaudi who died in 1962. The monument has attracted a lot of visitors over the years and remains the city’s best in terms of visitations made here.

There are also districts that came about with the Barcelona’s expansion on the further Northern area. The districts include Les Corts, Sarris, Horta-Guinardo and Gracia.

Barcelona’s seaside

For those who have a passion for sailing and windsurfing, you can do this on the Mediterranean mild climate and cools seas of Barcelona. Olympic Port has small boats which leave the harbor to take visitors sightseeing. You will be able to see the city’s coastline and waterfront which is quite a magnificent view. There are seafood restaurants at Barceloneta which is the city’s fishing district. Olympic Port also has outdoor terraces offering relaxation, bars, shops, cinemas and discos.

It is also wonderful to visit Costa Brava for a peaceful experience away from the crowd since it has deserted coves just for that peaceful moment.

Cultural center

There is a very beautiful cultural center called Sant Adria de Besos – El Forum which was constructed for the purpose of hosing Forum de Les Cultures. It was remodeled in 2004 for this reason and it hosts numerous events. Thousands of foreigners are attracted by the events which showcase cultural values of Spain. This is definitely worth the check.

Barcelona will indeed leave you feeling great and wonderful after visiting beautiful places, taking part in sports as well as learning a little bit of Spanish culture. The list of places to visit while in the city is simply endless.