For those visitors of Barcelona who love to shop, then the city will prove to be an absolute paradise! With an incredible mix from luxury high-end retailers to fantastic deals at markets and everything in between, there is truly some sort of shopping for any and all types of travelers.
Barcelona has a total of nearly 35,000 shops scattered throughout with new ones popping up all the time; that is a lot of stores to explore! Practically anywhere you find yourself wandering about while in Barcelona, you are likely to never be more than a few steps from a great shop that may just have exactly what you are on the look out for.
Home to the world famous 5-kilometer shopping line stretching from the top of Las Ramblas through Placa de Catalunya along Passeig de Gracia and then eventually up to Avenue Diagonal, Barcelona knows exactly what they are doing when it comes to providing excellent shopping for both locals and visitors.
Some of the biggest and most popular stores include H&M, Calvin Klein, Burberry, Armani, Bally, Cartier along with so many others all waiting to be explored. Although those are all great, visitors typically want to enjoy some of the shops they would not be able to find anywhere else and luckily enough, Barcelona also has plenty of those as well! With a vast array of Spanish designer shops that all specialize in various styles and supply things like custom jewelry, clothes, shoes, accessories and apparel, you are sure to find any and everything you are hoping for while in beautiful Barcelona.
The best way to explore all of the shopping that the city has to offer is to head out on foot and be sure to keep your eyes wide open for any shops that spark your interest. You never know what you might find!
When it comes to spending certain holidays in Barcelona, you truly cannot go wrong. Especially holidays such as Christmas and New Year’s, the city seems to light up and be filled with a sort of magical holiday atmosphere that everyone has come to love and appreciate being a part of.
Like many visitors of Barcelona, there are often concerns when it comes to shopping during the holidays. Although the overall feel of the city can be quite enchanting during times like Christmas and New Year’s, it often also means that the hours of the shops can change quite drastically. In order to avoid disappointment, here are some tips and facts you should know when it comes to shopping in Barcelona during the holidays…
• The 4 Sundays before Christmas, all shops will be open – all other Sundays of the year, shops are typically closed.
• Shops that are smaller than 150 square meters are not subject to opening hours and you will most likely find a lot of them open on both Sundays and holidays.
• The 2 places that do not follow these limitations for Sundays and holidays are Marremagnum and La Rocka Village.
• ALL shops will be closed on Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve and most on New Year’s Day.
The following is a list of additional the holidays you may encounter during your stay in Barcelona and possible closures of shops during these times…
• 06 January: Three Kings Day
• 03 April: Good Friday
• 05 April: Easter Sunday
• 01 May: Labor Day
• 01 June: Local Holiday
• 24 June: St. John’s Day Festival
• 15 August: Assumption Day
• 11 September: National Day of Catalonia
• 24 September: La Merce Festival (biggest)
• 06 December: Constitution Day
• 08 December: Day of the Immaculate Conception
• 26 December: Saint Stephen’s Day/Boxing Day
Although there are shops scattered and placed throughout all parts of Barcelona, there are certain popular shopping streets and areas that are well known for having all you would ever need when it comes to your shopping needs. Here they are…
Here are some of the most famous and well know shopping areas of Barcelona which you have to explore while in Barcelona!
Passeig de Gracia: By far the most elegant and refined fashion shopping street in all of Barcelona, Passeig de Gracia is packed full of modern architecture that include not only shops but also restaurants, bars and top hotels. Make your way down the glorious tree-lined streets and get ready to experience Barcelona shopping at its best. While here, you will find the ZARA flagship store on the corner of Passeig de Gracia and Gran Via while on another corner you will see the Apple Store. Whether you are shopping with no budget or shopping with the intention of simply to experience what its like to shop in this particular area, it proves to be fantastic spot for everyone.
Plaza Catalunya: Though not necessarily as impressive as Passeig de Garcia, Plaza Catalunya is able to boast the excellent El Corte Ingles department store on one side and then opposite, the El Triangle Mall. Inside the latter, you will find Barcelona’s biggest perfume shop, Sephora Triangle.
Portal de L’Angel: This is the place you will want to head if you are into stores such as H&M, where the flagship is located or a wider variety of smaller boutiques and cafes. It is a great pedestrian street to not only shop but wander about and explore.
Although it is always fun walking down the streets of both Portal de l’Angel and Passeig de Gracia, there is definitely something to be said about visiting the many fantastic shopping malls of Barcelona. If you would rather be inside in an air conditioned, large and welcoming mall, then the following are great ones to be sure and check out when you find yourself on a shopping spree in beautiful Barcelona…
It has to be said that some of the most famous places to do shopping in Barcelona are specific streets and areas, not shopping malls, however the city still offers wide selection of great shopping malls.
Las Arenas: Recently opened in the year 2011, this former bull ring turned into a massive and spectacular shopping mall is a great place to start out. Located near Montjuic hill and near several popular attractions like the MNAC Museum and the Magic Fountain, it is easy to find and definitely accessible by public transport or walking. Filled with brand name shops, restaurants and plenty of cafes, you are sure to find anything you need here!
L’illa Diagonal: This extremely modern and hip shopping mall located in the University Zone provides both locals and visitors a chance to indulge in some great name brands and department stores throughout. There is a wide variety of shops as well as restaurants and cafes that are perfect for taking a break from all the walking and wandering about.
Maremagnum: One of the best things about this popular shopping center that sets it apart from many others is the fact that it is open 7 days a week, unlike others that are typically closed on Sundays. Located at the bottom end of La Rambla walking street, you will find over 20 gourmet restaurants all found on a lovely open-air terrace on the top floor as well as live performances at the Maremagnum Terrace.
Glòries: This shopping mall will surprise you with the diversity of it as it is combining great shopping experience, restaurants and recreation area which is popular for a Sunday stroll even though the shops are closed then.
If shopping malls and big department stores are not necessarily suiting your needs and preferences while in Barcelona, you may want to consider exploring the many fabulous markets in town. The following are a few of the best ones available while in Barcelona…
La Boqueria: Also known as Mercat de Sant Josep, it is fairly safe to say that this definitely the most well-known markets in Barcelona. Located on La Rambla, this market is always packed full of people on the search for various types of food and treasures. It is not to be missed while in Barcelona!
As you make your way through the grand iron entrance, you will soon find yourself completely surrounded by every fruit imaginable, treats galore and a variety of different foods from all nationalities. At first you may be slightly overwhelmed with the noises, a mixture of heavenly smells and the slippery icy floors but once you have had just one taste of the many foods here you will be thankful you chose to explore this wonder.
However, if walking around and making your way through the crowds does become too much, then take a seat at one of the many bars scattered throughout the market where you will find both food and drink for purchase. Though the most famous one, El Pinotxo is located right near the entrance and is often extremely crowded, chances are the further inside the market you head, the more bar stools will be available for you to grab and enjoy.
Being able to experience such a grand tradition that exudes the city’s love for coming together and enjoying great food is something that you will be able to find at Boqueria Food Market. One walk through this place with a delicious serving of either fresh fruit, cheese or seafood place is guaranteed to have you wanting to come back again the next day for even more.
Mercadillo de la placa de Sant Josep: Although a rather small market located on Placa de Sant Josep Oriol, this is one that art lovers will surely not want to miss out on. Displays of works of art by about 15 Catalan artists makes this a cozy and personal experience that both locals and tourists can enjoy.
Mercat Del Encants: This Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday market is one of the most popular and most loved flea markets in all of Barcelona. Though it can come off as quite bizarre and odd to many tourists, there is a plethora of random treasures, gems and unique accessories to rummage through and possibly take home with you.
Fira de Santa Llucia: If you are lucky enough to be in Barcelona during the holiday season, you will get to experience this lovely Christmas fair, filled to the brim with festive holiday treasures. It goes from December 1st-December 24th and is something you will most definitely not want to miss!
If you are the type of person that wants to shop for something that most likely no other person will have, then you are in great luck! Barcelona has a ton of fantastic design shops and art galleries that offer shoppers unique and usually handcrafted clothes, jewelry, accessories, paintings and much more! The following are some of the best options to search for while in Barcelona…
Barcelona is filled with small design shops and galleries, get lost in some of the coolest neighborhoods like El Born, Gracia or Raval and experience nice entounters!
Camiseria Pons: The fact that this place has been operating since the year 1900 will give you a brief idea of how true quality items are appreciated and adorned in Barcelona. Full of beautiful clothes with labels like Julie Sohn, Dos Besos, Fresh from the Labb and much more, this is a must-see for all Barcelona shoppers.
Twiggy: If it is shoes you are in search of, then head to Twiggy! Located right next to MACBA, it is easy to find and wonderful to visit as it offers plenty of elegant, classy and stylish shoes for any sort of shopper!
Ambit, Galeria d’Art: For those art lovers who are most interested in modern and contemporary art, this is the place to head to. Filled with pieces from young and established artists from both Spain and abroad, this is a must-see.
Oslo: This place is one of the most unique places to find art as it is run by 4 girls who have created an open studio for creative adventures. They also feature and sell handmade products from various local artists, which makes it even more intriguing!
Holala Plaza: This second-hand shop provides some great finds of both trendy clothes and accessories as well as chic furniture and design pieces you most likely will not find anywhere else.
Taller Creativo Bencini: A very small yet very inviting studio near Merkat Santa Caterina that is filled with bright colors along with oodles of creative flare and inspiration for all art lovers to appreciate. You can also strike up a conversation with the friendly artists of each piece.
If you are planning a trip to Barcelona or are already in Barcelona and preparing for a major shopping trip in your upcoming days, here are some helpful tips before you set out on your adventure…
• The biggest sales for shops and stores typically take place during the months of July/August as well as January/February. During this time, look for the words “REBAJAS” or “REBAIXES”.
• Remember that if you are in Barcelona during the holidays, the shops are typically open on the 4 Sundays before Christmas and closed Christmas Day and New Year’s.
• If you are there during the holidays, your best chance of finding an open shop is at the smaller ones because they do not abide by the same laws as the bigger shopping malls and department stores.
• Whatever shopping area (Passeig de Gracia or Portal de ‘l Angel) you are shopping at, be sure to pay close attention to your things and avoid wearing a backpack so that you avoid any pickpocketing problems
.• If you want to avoid looking like a tourist, then simply dress like the Catalans do!
• Some of the best spots to find unique treasures and gems to take back home with you are at the smaller local shops or the smaller markets that are not so crowded.
• Never be too worried about finding places to eat within the major shopping areas as there are ALWAYS plenty of fun and lively cafes, restaurants and tapas bars to head into while taking a break from shopping.
• HAVE FUN & BE SAFE!