There’s nothing more natural than deciding to spend part of August in Barcelona.
It’s the month the city’s already lively street culture finds another gear. Sure, the parties and sunburns tend to send tourists to bed early – but we won’t be having any of that.
Yes, August 2018 in Barcelona is shaping up to be the best one yet.
Here’s how to get the most of it.
Barcelona in August 2018
1 – Why Barcelona in August?
2 – Advice before you go
3 – Barcelona weather in August
4 – La Fiesta Major de Gracia
5 – 2018 Festivals
6 – Concerts and club nights in 2018
7 – Summer nights at classic attractions
8 – Football + Magic Fountain + outdoor cinema
Why Barcelona in August?
It’s the ideal month to hit Barcelona’s best beaches and show off that bangin’ new swimsuit.
Throw in some top notch music festivals and Barcelona’s classic barrio parties and we’re all set.
Remember though that August is also the most visited month on the Barcelona tourist calendar and so you’re bound to encounter long lines and potentially sold out venues.
Advice Before You Go
If you hate sweating your way through hour long lines buy your tickets in advance online.
Also make sure you get yourself a transport pass to save money and time.
If you’re visiting Barcelona in August be careful with pickpockets in top tourist areas.
Keep an eye out here because I’ll be adding more events as they’re announced.
Barcelona Weather in August
Barcelona weather in August promises hot and humid temperatures with a lot of sun.
August has an average temperature of 28 °C (82 °F) with lows dropping down to 19°C (67°F) at the end of the month.
Expect 9 hours of daily sunshine and about 5 days of rainfall – those who are sensitive to heat may want to exercise caution as heat waves are common. The city can become a sauna with temperatures approaching the mid 30’s.
Those visiting Barcelona in August should pack light: t-shirts, shorts, flip flops, and a light jacket in case of rain. Sunglasses and sunscreen are a must.
A filled water bottle can also be a life-saver!
LA FIESTA MAYOR DE GRÀCIA 2018
The undisputed main event of things to do in August in Barcelona: La Fiesta de Gracia.
We’ll have the official Fiesta de Gracia schedule updated soon but for now I can confirm that the 2017 version runs from August 15-21. Obviously the busiest days will be weekends, but I don’t think there’s any real quiet day.
The party finds itself in the Gracia district (metro Fontana, green line L3) and is known as Barcelona’s answer to Carnevale. This year is the 200th edition so you can imagine just how important this party is.
During the festival the streets of Gracia are decorated with coloured banners, giant flowers, and papier mâché giants. A lot of the streets put up their own stages with ear-splitting sound systems and every one has a different genre: electronic, salsa, punk, hip hop and more.
You can spend hours wandering through the streets and catching a bit of live music in every square… and it’s all free! You’ll also find great prices on beer, tapas, kebabs and more.
During the festival bars are open late and they set up stands with beer kegs, wine, and sangria. The lines can get a bit ridiculous so of course you’re free to indulge in Spain’s favourite past time: botellon! Grab a bottle of liquor and a mixer and pour it into plastic cups. You won’t be alone.
Careful: drinking in the street is technically illegal so make sure your bottles are hidden.
During the Festa de Gracia 2018 the metro is open all night on the 18th and 19th of August.
At the end of the festival the most well decorated of the streets (which decorate according to a theme like Japan, the underworld, space etc.) wins a prize. This year there are plans to decorate the main gate into the neighbourhood.
Barcelona Festivals in August 2018
In Barcelona in August you’ll find a different neighbourhood party practically every week. Keep in mind that all of them are free to attend so just get to the area, walk around, and enjoy the festivities.
La Festa Major de Sants
This neighbourhood festival honours Saint Bartomeu, the patron saint of Sants, who was martyred and even flayed (skinned) for his beliefs – morbidly becoming a major figure to all the leather-related professionals that inhabited the area.
Again, you’ll find no less than 22 streets in the neighbourhood decorated in particular themes. A recent winner of the competition was the King Kong/New York themed street – quite the sight!
The classic papier mâché giants, the fire-spitting dragons of the correfoc (‘fire run’), and human tower building are just some of the very Catalan highlights of this barrio party.
Also not to miss are the fireworks at the closing of the festival.
To get to the festival get off at Sants Estaciò metro (green line L3 or blue line L5).
The Festa Major de Sants 2018 version runs from August 19-26 and you can find more info here.
La Festa Major del Barrio Gotico
If you’re looking for something authentic and traditional then look no further than the city’s oldest barrio party.
Held in honour of Saint Roc, who according to legend caught the plague upon visit to the city but was nursed back to health by a local baker’s dog, and protected the city against a later outbreak.
It’s a bit like stepping into a time machine as the costumes, songs, and dances are pretty much the same as they were for the first edition in 1589. In the streets and squares of this magical central neighbourhood you’ll find performances of the sardana (a traditional Catalan dance) and parades of papier mâché giants.
The highlight here is the chaotic correfoc, a sort of parade with adults and children dressed up as devils and lighting off firecrackers while a series of fire-spitting dragons fire off sparklers and fireworks in all directions – you may get burned!
Make sure you try the official food of the festival: panellets (a traditional marzipan dessert with pine nuts). Accompany them with a sweet wine and you’re set! Grab them at Dolceria De La Colmena (Placa de l’Angel 12).
The Festa Major del Barri Gòtic 2018 goes on August 16th.
With the success of years past we knew the Spanish version of this Dutch techno festival would be back.
DGTL dazzles with its modern fire-spitting machines and interactive, eco-friendly visual art installations. The festival maintains its vintage warehouse feel and gritty sounds that contrast the crashing waves on the beach at Barcelona’s famous Parc del Fòrum.
Last year fans were treated to a mixed lineup of underground and popular DJs like Maceo Plex, John Talabot, Nina Kravitz, Agoria, and more.
Top names announced for 2017 include Solomun, Tale of Us, Jeff Mills, and Paco Osuna.
Dates: August 11 and 12 2017.
Prices: €35.00 (one-day) – €60.00 (two-day).
There’s also a €99.00 ticket with afterparty option + entrance to the techno party Brunch in the Park at the top of Montjuic hill.
Metro: El Maresme-Forum (yellow line L4).
For more information consult the official DGTL 2017 website.
Brunch in the Park
The legendary outdoor techno party at the top of Barcelona’s tallest hill.
Every Sunday afternoon you’ll find this daytime dance doozy with a lineup of spectacular international DJs. People looking for fun but an early start on Monday are well served here – the festival runs from 12 pm to 10 pm.
You’ll find a great beer garden and some nice cool-off spots spraying you with water. Then add some food trucks and even a playground for children (who says parents can’t party?) and you’re set.
Make sure you bring sunscreen and a hat!
Dates: Every Sunday in August 2018.
Prices: €11.00 (first release) – €20.00 (walk-up).
Metro: Paral·lel (purple line L2, green line L3) then change for Montjuic Funicular
For more information on Brunch in the Park 2018 consult the official website.
Festival Mas i Mas
Over 200 concerts spanning six classic Barcelona venues make up this concert festival.
Check out a ton of local and international artists performing jazz, flamenco, hip-hop, gospel, funk, rock, and more.
Prices and venues vary but check out the programme here.
Cap Roig Festival
A concert series in a spectacular natural setting overlooking the Mediterranean Sea.
Head up the coast an hour or so to the Costa Brava and see one of the Med’s best botanical gardens before checking out great international artists across many genres.
The 2017 version welcomes Wilco, the Pretenders, Norah Jones, Ben Harper, Andrea Bocelli, and more.
Tickets €30.00 – €375.00 depending on artist.
For more information on the Cap Roig festival click here.
August Concerts and Club Nights
I’ll add to this list of concerts and nights at Barcelona’s best clubs as the information becomes available – in the meantime as a base idea you can’t go wrong with a night at Sala Apolo or Razzmatazz.
- August 3: System of Survival + Pau Roca. Moog. Raw house and garage. €8.00 in advance.
- August 4: Pendulum. Razzmatazz. A DJ set of quality drum n’ bass. €17.00 in advance.
- August 5: Todd Terry. Razzmatazz. An American DJ mixing house and Latin. €13.00 in advance.
- August 9: Obituary. Razzmatazz. Death metal legends shred it up. €22.00 in advance.
- August 23: PJ Harvey. Poble Espanyol. The English alternative rocker returns. €56.00 in advance.
Summer Nights at Classic Attractions
There’s gotta be somebody who doesn’t want to wake up with a headache, right? 😉
For those looking for something calm and cultural at Barcelona’s top attractions will have their fill.
Casa Batllo Magic Nights
Not only can you get rare nighttime access to one of the most mind-blowing sights in Barcelona but a concert on the Dragon Roof Terrace as well.
Concerts include rock and roll, jazz, opera, soul, flamenco, and more.
Dates: Every day from 8 pm.
Tickets: €29.00 concert only, €39.00 with house visit (includes 2 drinks).
Children under 7 enter free.
The 2018 version will be launched soon and I’ll put the buying links here.
Summer Nights at La Pedrera
What could be more memorable than a jazz concert atop the legendary ‘garden of warriors’ rooftop at one of the world’s greatest architectural marvels?
Your Summer Nights tour at La Pedrera also includes a glass of cava and a visit to the Espai Gaudi, giving you a visual tour of the life and works of Barcelona’s most famous architect.
Either this or the Casa Batllo concert are a great option for couples in Barcelona.
Dates: Every Friday and Saturday in 2017 (20:30-22:30)
Tickets: €29.00 (children under 3 free).
More info here.
Other Things to Do in Barcelona in August 2018
The Joan Gamper Cup
Football/soccer lovers will be happy that the sport comes back with a vengeance in August in Barcelona.
The first important match of the season for Barça is in honour of its founder and former president Hans Gamper. The match involves an invited team from anywhere in the world and the 2017 Gamper Cup hosts Brazilian squad Chapecoense – the victims of the horrible plane crash last November.
You may also want to take a tour of Camp Nou stadium to see some of the best sports memorabilia around including Champions League trophies, Messi’s Golden Boots and more.
The Magic Fountain
It’s an emblem of the city and a staple in any summer month.
Especially in August though you’ll find Barcelona’s Magic Fountain the optimal place to cool off.
Right by Plaça Espanya you’ll find this magical fountain show set to music that’s an explosion of colours and sounds – and refreshing water!
Shows run from Wednesday to Sunday from 21:30 to 22:30.
Fans of the silver screen and classic movies wont go wrong here.
Projected onto the walls of Montjuic Castle is this outdoor cinema series complete with short films, concerts and more. Bring your own beer and snacks and cosy up!
Projections on August 2nd (Manhattan) and August 4 2017 (a surprise film) cost €6.00.
You can also combine the movie with a visit to Montjuic Castle for €11.00.
Shows begin at 20:30.
More info here.
Sweat Me in the Comments Below
If for whatever reason you still feel you haven’t got enough things to do in Barcelona in August then you know what to do: harass me mercilessly.
Any questions you have about your Barcelona holiday will be answer promptly and in earnest.
Also, any comments you have would be greatly appreciated.