Barcelona City is known for its rich culture and stunning architecture that transforms into a winter wonderland during the Christmas season. The streets are adorned with twinkling lights, and the air is filled with the aroma of festive treats. One of the highlights of the holiday season is the captivating emergence of Christmas markets in Barcelona in 2023. Take a closer look at the history and significance of the Christmas markets in Barcelona, explore the top spots in the city, and discover the must-try festive treats.
1. Christmas Markets in Barcelona 2023
Barcelona’s vibrant streets come alive with sparkling lights from November 24, 2023, to January 6, 2024, a period that stretches from the beginning of Christmas celebrations up to the Three King’s Day. Christmas markets in Barcelona in 2023 display the diverse cultural heritage of Catalonia and invites tourists and locals alike to fully engage in joyous celebrations.
The tradition of Christmas markets dates back to the Late Middle Ages in Europe. Christmas markets started as a practice of preparing for the Christmas season by purchasing food, decorations, and gifts. Over the years, these markets have transformed into venues that depict vibrant celebrations of the holiday spirit. Christmas markets in Barcelona in 2023 are no exception. This year, Barcelona City expects a significant influx of tourists seeking the city’s unique charm and top attractions. If you’re one of those planning a trip here during the Christmas season, make sure to enjoy the 2023 Christmas markets in Barcelona.
2. Santa Lucia Christmas Markets in Barcelona in 2023
La Fira de Santa Llúcia is the most ancient Christmas marketplace in Barcelona. This treasured Spanish Christmas market originated in 1786 and continued developing in the 19th century. You can find this historic christmas markets in Barcelona in the iconic Plaza de la Catedral and explore more than 300 stalls. It is open from late November to December 23rd from 10:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m., and admission is free.
This Christmas markets in Barcelona boasts an extensive selection of traditional Catalan crafts, Christmas decorations, and unique gifts that are mostly handmade, making it an ideal destination for festive shopping.
La Fira de Santa Llúcia is an Xmas market in Barcelona all families will appreciate because of its child-friendly activities. Tio de Nadal (Christmas log) is one of the most prominent activities for children on the side of Placa Nova. This activity involves children singing a traditional song while hitting a log until it releases a present for them. When traveling with pets, make sure to follow Barcelona’s regulations, as they allow pets to go as well.
To better appreciate La Fira de Sant Llucia, we advise you to use the map of Barcelona and avail of the Barcelona pass or Barcelona card for your tickets and transportation. You can reach this Christmas marketplace by foot from anywhere within the Gothic Quarter. If you opt to ride a metro, you may take Jaume 1 (Line 4) or Liceo 2 (Line 3). There are also numerous bus lines available. Additionally, you may ride the hop-on-hope-off bus tour to Barcelona.
3. Poble Espanol Christmas Market
Poble Espanol Christmas Fair, also known as Spanish Village, is located on Montjuïc Hill. In preparation for the International Exposition that took place in 1929, organizers originally set up this Christmas marketplace in Barcelona. The area is a huge 50,000 square meter open space that is a full-scale replica of Spanish towns and buildings. There are 117 architectural elements here, including buildings, monuments, streets, bridges, churches, and squares.
Pop-up stores that cater to tourists and locals fill the outdoor museum during the Christmas season. Craft shops and restaurants showcase their local products that give you a taste of authentic Spanish culture. You can also buy Flamenco costumes or mementos from El Quijote as a takeaway this Christmas markets in Barcelona in 2023.
The New Year’s Eve party is organized yearly every 31st of December and takes place in Plaza Mayor and the nightclub in the exhibition area. Operating hours are from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. The general admission fee is €14 and is subject to a discount for eligible individuals. As with other seasonal events, we advise you to book tickets online ahead of time to avoid the rush.
You can travel to Poble Español on your Barcelona trip if you’re starting at the Montjuic Mountain Area. Take Espanya (Lines 1 and 3) if you’re riding the metro. For those who prefer bus rides, take Lines 13, 50, and 61.
4. Port Vell Christmas Markets in Barcelona in 2023
Barcelona Port Vell Christmas Marketplace is located in Rambla De Mar, at the foot of the statue of Christopher Columbus. It is one of the newest Christmas marketps in Barcelona port. The highlight here is a 31-meter Christmas tree which is considered to be the tallest installed in Catalunya. What is distinct about this marketplace is its extended operation that runs from December 5, 2023, to January 7, 2024. The entrance fee to this Christmas Markets in Barcelona in 2023 costs €8. D
With its grand Ferris wheel and floating nativity at the Barcelona port, tourists and locals are sure to put it on their to-do list. More than 500 people are estimated to visit the place. Other things to look forward to in this Christmas marketplace in Barcelona are the crafts and products from restaurants, as well as vegan and vegetarian food options. Families will surely appreciate the musical show performed in the air and water.
At Moll de la Fusta, there’s an artificial ice rink that measures 400 square meters. The entry fee here is €8, and it is mandatory to wear gloves, which you can rent for €1 at the box office. Visitors are allowed to bring pets. Aside from that, there’s a charity dance event that aims to raise funds for La Marato de TV3 and Catalunya Radio, with this year’s focus being on reproductive and sexual health.
The best transportation to visit this Christmas markets in Barcelona in 2023 includes the metro through L3 and L4 stops, as well as bus rides. If you are at the World Trade Centre, you can reach La Rambla in just 15 minutes. There are also cruise bus shuttle services along the port.
5. Christmas Market at Barcelona Sagrada Familia Church
Sagrada Familia Church Christmas markets in Barcelona is near the Plaza de la Sagrada Familia fronting the monument created by Antoni Gaudi. It first opened in 1962 and is now one of the three most important markets in Spain as well as one of the top things to see in Barcelona.
This iconic marketplace is open during the holiday season from November 24 up to December 23, 2023, from 10:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. on weekdays. Its operating hours extend until 10:00 p.m. on weekends and holidays. People can enjoy shopping with free admission to this Barcelona attraction.
There are over 100 stalls here that feature products such as Christmas trees and plants, ornamental Christmas decorations, nativity scenes, and, handcrafted items. Traditional winter foods and sweets like baked sweet potatoes, roast peanuts, churros, and hot chocolate are also available to satisfy your palate.
You may take the L2 and L5 metro routes to visit this Christmas markets in Barcelona in 2023. There are also numerous auto buses, including the hop-on-hop-off bus. Make sure not to miss the three main events during Christmas at Sagrada Familia. These include the traditional Christmas concert, the Christmas workshop, and the illumination of the facade of the birth.
This is one of the most family-friendly places to visit while in Barcelona. There are activities and attractions specially designed for children. Tourists should review specific pet-friendly policies during their travel, as pets are allowed in the vicinity of the marketplace.
6. Fira de Reis Christmas Markets in Barcelona 2023
Fira de Reis (St. Thomas and Three King’s Fair) is one of the most popular Christmas markets in Barcelona in 2023. It is located at the Gran Via de les Corts Catalanes. You can find the venue between Carrer Calabria and Carrer Muntaner streets. This Christmas markets in Barcelona is known for its diverse range of products, including handicrafts, toys, clothing, and gastronomic delights.
It initially opened in 1877 with 18 stalls and was known for only selling toys and sweets. Some kinds of toys can only be found in this marketplace. In 2023, this Christmas marketplace will open with over 200 stalls and is set to operate from December 16, 2023, to January 6, 2024. There is no admission fee. Weekday hours are from 10:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m., with an extension to 10:00 p.m. on weekends. On January 5, 2024, the operating hours will further extend until 1:00 a.m.
During your Barcelona visit, make sure to try different Spanish delicacies, especially churros, which you can find in abundance along the Gran Via street. The wonderful aroma of this treat starts spreading across the vicinity once the marketplace opens. This sweet, fried, doughnut-like pastry is popular among youngsters and adults alike. Churros are best enjoyed with a side of hot chocolate and are particularly delightful in the chilly weather.
You can reach Feria de Reis Christmas marketplace on foot from Plaça Catalunya or the surrounding vicinity. Simply follow the path leading to the end of the Feria, and you will reach the marketplace. If you prefer using the metro, you can head to Urgell or Rocafort on Line 1.
7. Plaça de Catalunya Christmas festival
Plaça de Catalunya, the heart of Barcelona, comes alive during the Christmas season with a festive market. Visitors can browse through the stalls that sell Christmas decorations, toys, and souvenirs. This Christmas markets in Barcelona also offers fun activities for children in 2023, including a merry-go-round and a Santa’s grotto.
This market opens from December 16 to 29, 2023 from 11:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m., with various activities that visitors of all ages will surely enjoy. The entrance fee is free for all. In the morning at Nadal SuperVeloz, children can learn how a printing press works and make their own Christmas cards. They also have the opportunity to explore Paisatges (Landscapes), an interactive play that facilitates learning about the body and space.
For adults, the Festival Sons de Nadal (Sounds of Christmas) and street performances are scheduled in the afternoon through the evening. This show runs from December 9, 2023, to January 4, 2024. One of the top things to see in Barcelona is the diverse array of performing artists, spanning genres like pop, jazz, reggae, and folk music. These performers will showcase their musical talents as the audience enjoys shopping and dining.
To reach Plaça de Catalunya Christmas marketplace , you can take the metro using Lines 1 and 3 or ride a bus for more convenient transport. If you prefer a leisurely walk, you can do so as the renowned square is easily identifiable by its distinctive fountain.
8. Sants Barcelona Christmas Market of 2023
Also called Fira de Nadal de Sants, the Sants Christmas Marketplace is another one of the top Christmas markets in Barcelona in 2023. This neighborhood known for its artistic atmosphere, hosts a cozy Christmas market that features local artisans selling handmade crafts, jewelry, and clothing. Find all these at Placa de Sants (Joan Guell sidewalk).
Visitors can also enjoy live music performances and indulge in traditional Catalan cuisine. Admission is free for everyone. Operating hours will run from 9:00 a.m. to 9;00 p.m. and will commence from November 28 to December 23, 2023.
9. 2023 Christmas Markets in Barcelona at Pedralbes
The Christmas Marketplace at Pedralbes or Mercat de Nadal de Pedralbes is a market one should not miss going to. The gardens of Palau Reial de Pedralbes transform into a magical Christmas marketplace during the holiday season. This place offers a wide range of products, including art, fashion, and gourmet food. Visitors can also enjoy festive workshops and live entertainment. The highlight of this area is the nativity scene, which is on display from mid-December 2023 until February 2024. It will also host family activities on December 23, 2023.
This Christmas markets in Barcelona in 2023 will only be open on December 2, 2023, from 10:00 a.m. to 6;00 p.m. with an admission fee of €5. Discounted prices apply for the entrance fee for senior citizens and the disabled. Children below 16 years old can enter free of charge. Pets are not permitted within the premises.
To reach the Monastery of Pedralbes, you can either take Line 3 of the metro, ride the tourist bus on the Blue route, or opt for any of the various bus lines that go to this destination. The best transport options are buses, trains, and a car, as the trip from Barcelona City to the Monastery of Pedralbes typically takes around 30 minutes.
10. Kid-Friendly Christmas Activities in Barcelona
In addition to magical Christmas markets in Barcelona in 2023, there are a lot of kid-friendly activities during the holidays, making Barcelona a perfect destination for families. From visiting Santa’s grotto to ice skating in the city center, there is something for children of all ages to enjoy. Here are some of the top kid-friendly Barcelona tourist attractions during Christmas.
10.1 Ice Skating at Moll de la Fusta
Moll de la Fusta transforms into a winter wonderland during the Christmas season, complete with an ice skating rink. Children can glide across the ice while surrounded by festive decorations and twinkling lights. The entrance fee is €8 and glove rental costs €1. The ice skating rink is open from December 5, 2023, to January 7, 2024, from 10:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.
10.2 El Corte Inglés
El Corte Inglés, a famous mall in Barcelona, hosts Santa’s Grotto during the holiday season. The store is open from 9:00 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Children get the chance to meet Santa Claus, share their Christmas wishes, and even receive a small gift from him.
10.3 Poble Espanol
Poble Espanyol has arranged a Jingle Bubble at Carpa Poble show suitable for both children and adults, featuring the acclaimed artist Pep Bou. The entrance fee is €13. The performance combines lights, soap, water, and music to craft a dreamlike and poetic journey for the audience. This show will run from December 7, 2023, to January 7, 2024, with scheduled performances at 12:30 p.m. and 6:00 p.m.
10.4 Festival de la Infància
The Festival de la Infancia on Avinguda Reina is specifically tailored for the youth and children during the Christmas season. This event runs from December 27 to 31, 2023, between 10:00 a.m. and 9:00 p.m. Admission is free for all ages. This fest encompasses a diverse range of activities, including workshops, musical performances, cooking classes, sports, and makeup workshops. There are also magic shows, music games, and interactive musical performances for teens, as well as puppet theater and storytelling sessions for children.
11. What to Eat in Barcelona During Christmas
One of the highlights of visiting the Christmas markets in Barcelona in 2023 is indulging in the delicious festive treats available. Whether you are on a day trip from Barcelona City or having a long stay, from traditional Catalan delicacies to international delights, there is always something to satisfy your every craving. There are also specialties made only for vegans and vegetarians.
Churros con Chocolate is a beloved Spanish treat that consists of deep-fried dough served with a thick hot chocolate dipping sauce. Enjoy the crispy churros as you indulge in the rich, velvety chocolate dip.
Another delicacy to try are Polvorones, which are crumbly shortbread cookies made with almonds and dusted with powdered sugar. These melt-in-your-mouth treats are a Christmas staple in Spain and make for a delightful snack while exploring the Christmas markets.
You can also warm up with a cup of hot mulled wine, known as “vino caliente” in Spanish. This festive drink is made by infusing red wine with spices such as cinnamon, cloves, and orange peel. Sip on the aromatic beverage as you soak in the Christmas atmosphere around you.
Lastly, Canelons, or cannelloni, is a popular Catalan dish served during the Christmas season. These pasta tubes are typically filled with leftover meats from the Christmas feast, such as roasted lamb or turkey, and covered in a rich béchamel sauce. Try this hearty dish for a taste of Catalan holiday tradition. Read our article if you want to learn more about Spanish Christmas sweets.
12. Weather in Barcelona During Christmas
Barcelona enjoys a mild Mediterranean climate, making it conducive for visiting different places during the Christmas season. The average temperature in December ranges from 9°C to 15°C (48°F to 59°F). While it can be slightly chilly, it is generally comfortable for exploring the Christmas markets in Barcelona as well as Barcelona’s tourist attractions. We recommend dressing in layers, including a warm coat, scarf, and hat, to ensure you stay cozy while wandering through Barcelona.
13. Other Things to Do in Barcelona at Christmas
While the Christmas markets are major Barcelona tourist attractions during the holiday season, the city offers plenty of other activities and Barcelona tourist places to explore. Here are some additional things you can do in Barcelona to make the most of your Christmas trip:
A day trip from Barcelona City is not complete without seeing the marveling architectural masterpiece at Sagrada Familia. The stunning basilica, designed by Antoni Gaudí, is a symbol of the city and is one of the top ten things to see in Barcelona. Note that if you plan to attend a mass, wear the proper dress code and arrive early to secure a seat, as seating is limited.
Gaudí created another masterpiece in the form of Park Güell, a whimsical park brimming with stunning mosaic artworks, vibrant colors, and unique architectural elements. Take a stroll and explore the scenery through the park and enjoy the breathtaking views the area offers.
You can also wander through the Gothic Quarter, a charming neighborhood filled with narrow streets, historical buildings, and hidden squares on a day trip from Barcelona. Explore medieval architecture, visit the Barcelona Cathedral, and soak in the vibrant atmosphere of this iconic area. Also, don’t miss out on Blanes, which is famous for its botanical gardens and the annual Blanes Fireworks Competition.
If you want to explore other places beyond this city, check out our guide to the best Day Trips From Barcelona. For those who prefer a more active vacation, read about the top Hiking Destinations From Barcelona.