March in Barcelona; what to do?
March is the month that many have been waiting for; the official start of spring. Whilst it might not be the time yet for dipping your toes in the sea, there are definitely a lot of other fun things to enjoy this month. As the high season begins to pick up in March, this is your last chance to go sightseeing without tackling big crowds of people.
March in Barcelona; activities and events
The first festivity that takes place in March is ‘Festa di Sant Medir’. It is one of the most well-known festivities in Gràcia’s old town. The parade is well renowned for the tons of candies thrown from horses, floats and wagons into the crowd. The festivity consists of a pilgrimage from Gràcia and Sant Gervasi de Cassoles to the hermitage of Sant Medir in the Collserola Mountains. This festivity all began with baker Josep Vidal i Granés, who made the promise in 1828 that he would go on a pilgrimage to the Ermita de Sant Medir if he would be able to heal from his illness. He was then joined by friends, family and others. It is said that when he came back from the pilgrimage, he distributed beans to the crowd of people that were awaiting him. Legend says that these beans were sowed by a saint. As time went on, these beans were replaced with sweets. This festivity is one that has been around for a very long and is definitely worth attending for those who want to dive deeper into the culture of Gràcia.
Saint Patrick’s day
Another festivity that takes place in March is Saint Patrick’s day. Even though this is a celebration of Irish origin, it is widely celebrated all across the world, also in Spain. Every year on the 17th of March the death of Saint Patrick, Ireland’s most famous patron saint, is commemorated. All around Barcelona, there will be people dressed in green, the colour that symbolizes rebellion according to the Irish. So get that green shirt out and join the Irish for a beer in one of the many Irish pubs around the city. This goes to show that Barcelona is not just the perfect place to get to know Catalan culture, but also the culture of many other countries!
Marathon of Barcelona - Zurich Marató de Barcelona
The yearly marathon, also known as ‘Zurich Marató de Barcelona’ has been taking place ever since 1978. It is an incredibly popular marathon, with thousands of participants. The marathon starts at 8.30 at Avinguda Reina Maria Cristina. If you’re a fan of running, this is an incredible marathon to participate in, seeing as the participants run past all of Barcelona’s highlights. Whether you are interested in running or not, it is a fun moment to head into the city, with food stands, live music and a diverse range of activities taking place.
Festes de Sant Josep Oriol
Every March, the ‘Festes de Sant Josep Oriol’ takes place in the streets and plazas of ‘Barri Gòtic’. It is a cultural festivity for people of all ages. The acts that are carried out by the ‘Gegants del Pi’, also known as ‘the giants’, are from centuries ago. Attending this festivity gives you the chance to immerse yourself more in the Catalan culture and its long history full of tales and traditions. ‘Sant Josep Oriol’ is commemorated for this devotion to the sick and underprivileged. One of the activities that you shouldn’t miss is the night parade of the Giants. It is something very astounding to see these very tall figures move through the small streets of ‘Barri Gòtic’. The days of celebration are concluded by a final dance, performed by the giants.
If you’re looking for a place where fashion, food, culture and music all come together, then ‘Palo Fest’ is the perfect market to attend. The market takes place every month in Poblenou, a neighbourhood known for its creative character. March is one of the more relaxed months of the year, with the shift from winter to spring, so what better time to attend this lovely market than in March. It is the perfect way to kick off springtime. Everyone is welcome at Palo Fest, from children to seniors. Children under the age of 12 can access the market for free. So what better place to meet up for some coffee or cocktails than this market.
International Vintage Car Rally Barcelona - Sitges
Attend this longstanding event in Sitges, a small town renowned for its beaches and historical sites. It is the ideal place to escape city life for a bit. Every year an international vintage car rally is held, where cars built before 1928 and motorbikes built before 1938 drive along the main road between Barcelona and Sitges. The event is organised with the help of the city councils of Barcelona and Sitges. These magnificent cars bring together people from the whole region of Catalonia. The winning vehicle is not only determined by how fast it arrives in Sitges. It is also determined by its uniqueness and that the owners also dress the part. Not only those with a fascination for vintage cars will enjoy this rally, but it is also for those who like racing, history or for those who simply enjoy the sight of the beautiful parade of 70 vintage cars driving down the dreamy road alongside the shore of the Mediterranean sea.
Black Music Festival
What better way to start the springtime than with a music festival? At the Black Music Festival, you will find an array of different artists and music genres. The name of the festival emphasizes its social importance. This festival is a tribute to the music created by people of colour; something that is often overlooked often and discredited. This is quite astounding, seeing as the majority of the current popular music styles are based on the music created by people of colour in the past. This festival has something for everyone. The music styles range from blues to rap, reggae, dancehall and more. The festival brings together not only a lot of different music styles but also different people. Its international aspect in combination with the local touch creates the perfect atmosphere for expats.
Cruïlla Primavera Festival
Another music festival that marks the start of spring is the Cruïlla Primavera Festival. This festival starts in February and continues until late April. There are concerts taking place all around the city. It is an incredibly diverse music festival, so make sure to check out all the different artists on the festival’s website to see which one you can’t miss out on!
Dansa Metropolitana is also returning this year, with a whole range of art performances ranging from theatre, dance and cinema. This cultural event is organized by ten different cities including Barcelona. It is the perfect opportunity to not only explore activities in the city centre but also visit some of the surrounding cities. It is guaranteed to be an enriching and inspiring experience. There are over 190 activities that you can attend, such as workshops, dance performances, cinema and conferences. You have all of March to explore the festival and see what inspires you the most!