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Barcelona over Christmas 23

Would love some tips on these topics! Family of 4 traveling to Barcelona over Christmas break or into the new year (just after Christmas). We would like to catch an FC Barcelona game while there, if possible.

We might also consider the month of May, but would have to push off to 2024 if we do that.

Pros and cons of our date choices?

Are lots of things closed over Christmas and into the New Year? Museums and such? Do museums offer nice cafes with a reasonably priced meal like in Ireland or England?

Are FC Barcelona game day tickets cheaper if you buy at the ticket kiosk a few days before? Or maybe they are cheaper if you buy on the website super early? For example the game for December right now is listed for 12/30 or 12/31 with date and time TBD. Maybe it's best to buy a month or two early this way?

Hoping to find very short path over from Portland or Seattle. Best routes or airlines? (I have been watching Google Flights to get a sense of things.) Good timing on ticketing? I tend to buy very early, but maybe that is not best.

I would like to book accommodations in the L'Eixample neighborhood but one student is voting for the Montjuic area. Pros and cons of each? We would like to be close to neighborhood restaurants and shops, but not into the nightlife.

Also, how hard is renting a car there, or rather, driving there? Considering a day trip to Montblanc area. Best to just sign up with a guide once there? If so, favorite travel guides/companies or ones to avoid?

Favorite pocket size guide book (besides Rick's which we have)?


Posted by
9643 posts

It would not be convenient to stay in Montjuic and have to travel up and down the mountain each time you wanted to travel to other areas of the city. Better to stay somewhere central like L’Eixample.
Montblanc would be a very long day trip, 185 miles one way. The Pyrenees are much closer.

Posted by
3376 posts

In Spain our holiday season extends into January, with the main celebration being Dia de los Reyes Magos (three kings day) on January 6th. Know that on the night of Jan 5th most cities in Spain have a big parade of the Three Kings (Cabalgata De Los Reyes Magos), it will be a great festive experience in our local culture. There is a big Three Kings parades in Barcelona

FYI most restaurants and even shops will be closed on Christmas Eve (24). Christmas Eve is a very familiar time for us, spent in one's house with the family. Even in big cities, it is almost impossible to find Spanish restaurants open on Christmas Eve. Try different cuisines, for example a Chinese restaurant or a Turkish restaurant. You will have a higher probability of finding those kinds of restaurants open on the 24th. Definitely reserve a table in advance for Christmas Eve and Day (25) as well.

Also, be sure not to miss our Christmas markets in Spain! Our Christmas market tradition is a little know part of our culture (It's not just the Germans lol). Since we mainly celebrate the Three Kings Day (Jan 6), you will find most of our Christmas Markets are still up into early Jan. For example, in Barcelona I'd recommend the Saint Lucia Christmas Market.

Considering a day trip to Montblanc area.

You mean Montserrat?