Barcelona definitely knows how to have some fun. The biggest city in northern Spain, it is home to some of the best and biggest Spanish and Catalan events. The most important festivals from a tourist’s perspective are the following:
Dia de Sant Jordi: The Catalans celebrate Saint George’s day every 23rd of April by offering a book and/or rose. The city’s major shopping streets are full of book and flower stands.
Festival de Sonar: The city hosts the yearly Sonar festival of multimedia art and advanced music. There are interesting technology fairs during the day and great music events by night. Held in mid-June, this festival is hugely popular, so it is a good idea to book early.
Festival de Sant Joan: Every 23rd of June, everyone heads down to the beach to celebrate the summer solstice with big bonfires and amazing firecrackers and fireworks. People engage in all night revelry and eat the traditional party, the coca de Sant Joan.
Grec Arts Festival: This is Barcelona’s largest music, theatre, and dance festival. It is held at venues all over from June to August
Festa Major de Gracia: This is week-long festival held in the streets of the Gracia neighborhood. It is celebrated with lots of heavy drinking, live music, and fireworks. It is celebrated around 15th August.
La Diada: Celebrated every 11th September, this fairly subdued affair observes the fall during the 1714 War of Spanish Succession that resulted in Catalonia losing much autonomy.
Festes de la Merce: This festival for the patron saint of Barcelona is held in the week of the day of La Mercè (24 September). All kinds of activities for all ages and all tastes are organized. One major attraction is the “correfoc” or fire-breathing dragons from all over Catalonia. Another attraction is the pyrotechnical music show.