A Guide to Visiting Barcelona in December | Attractions, Events & More


Is December a good time to visit Barcelona?

Barcelona, the capital of Catalonia is famed for its eccentric architecture, delicious tapas and wine. This dazzling city offers architecture, museums, nightlife, beaches and endless entertainment to all its tourists. Barcelona in December is a unique experience with lovely weather and the air is filled with Christmas festivities. Read on to find out how you can make the best of your trip to Barcelona in December. 

Overview of weather in Barcelona in December

Barcelona in december

Top 12 things to do in Barcelona in December

barcelona in december - la sagrada familia
barcelona in december - park guell
barcelona in december - casa vicens
barcelona in december

4. Visit Christmas Markets

Cultural Experience

A highlight of Barcelona in December is all the holiday markets you will find in the city. These markets sell holiday nick-nacks, like traditional cagatió (logs) and you’ll find them installed next to the Cathedral of Barcelona in Plaça Nova and the Sagrada Familia. There is also a free local market in Plaça de Catalunya.

barcelona in december
barcelona in december - thermal bath

6. Experience a Thermal Bath


What could be better than lounging in a thermal bath during a cool winter? Visit an ancient Roman bath that has been restored in the Gothic Quarters in Barcelona. At Aire de Barcelona you can enjoy hot baths at varied temperatures. You can choose between options like a normal bath, a red wine bath, and a scented room.

December Timings: Mon-Fri: 9AM-11PM. Sat-Sun: 9AM-12AM.

barcelona in december - gaudi house museum
barcelona in december - casa mila
barcelona in december - casa batllo
barcelona in december - flamenco show

10. Watch a Flamenco Show

Cultural Experience

You cannot leave Barcelona without experiencing a traditional Flamenco show. Flamenco is known for its intricate dance moves, the use of the classic flamenco guitar and elaborate costumes. You can sip on a glass of wine as you enjoy watching Spain’s folkloric traditions. This traditional Spanish dance form is unmissable!

barcelona in december - la rambla
barcelona in december - placa de espanya

12. Stroll through Plaça d’Espanya

City Square

Plaça d’Espanya is one of the biggest squares in Barcelona and offers the best views of the city in December. It was designed by Josep Amargos and features a gorgeous fountain at the center that was designed by  Josep Maria Jujol, a collaborator of Antoni Gaudí. It is especially beautiful during Christmas.

Top experiences & things to do in Barcelona in December


Festivals in Barcelona in December

Christmas in Barcelona

  • Witness the unique Catalan Christmas tradition of Caga Tió: Unlike the typical Christmas logs found in other countries, the Catalan Caga Tió is a friendly-looking log with a smiling face and a "behind" that can be used to "poop" out small gifts and sweets for children on Christmas Day. This whimsical tradition adds a touch of fun and quirkiness to the festive season in Barcelona.
  • Experience the vibrant Fira de Santa Llúcia Christmas market: Immerse yourself in the festive atmosphere of the Fira de Santa Llúcia, Barcelona's oldest Christmas market, located in the Gothic Quarter. Browse through stalls adorned with twinkling lights, handcrafted ornaments, traditional Catalan Christmas decorations, and delicious treats like Turrón and Polvorones.
  • Celebrate Three Kings Day (Día de los Reyes Magos) on January 6th: Experience the magic of Three Kings Day, a beloved Spanish tradition, where children eagerly await the arrival of the Three Kings on horseback, who parade through the streets of Barcelona, showering sweets and gifts upon the city.
barcelona in december

New Year's Eve in Barcelona

  • Experience the iconic Las Ramblas New Year's Eve celebration: Ring in the New Year amidst a vibrant crowd on Las Ramblas, Barcelona's most famous boulevard. As the clock strikes midnight, join in the synchronized chimes of the city's bells and enjoy a spectacular fireworks display over the Mediterranean Sea.
  • Indulge in a traditional Catalan New Year's Eve dinner: Savor a memorable New Year's Eve dinner at a local restaurant, where you'll experience the traditional Catalan custom of eating 12 grapes to the chimes of the midnight bells. Each grape represents a wish for the coming year, adding a touch of magic to the start of the new year.
  • Dance the night away at one of Barcelona's lively New Year's Eve parties: Barcelona is renowned for its vibrant nightlife, and on New Year's Eve, the city comes alive with countless parties to choose from. Whether you prefer electronic music, salsa, or traditional Catalan folk music, you'll find a party that suits your taste.

Events in Barcelona in December

barcelona in december - ice skating

Ice Skating in Plaza Catalunya

Venue: Plaza Catalunya

Dates: End of November

Plaza Catalunya has the biggest ice rink in all of Europe that opens to the public in the third week of November. December is the perfect time to take part in ice-skating and enjoy its thrills! This ice skating rink has enough room for many visitors with a skating area of 1200 square meters.

barcelona in december - Fira de Nadal Sagrada Familia

Fira de Nadal Sagrada Familia

Venue: La Sagrada Familia

Dates: End of November

The Christmas Fair at the Sagrada Família has been running since 1962. It is a traditional Christmas market with over 100 stalls selling a variety of gifts and decorations along with craft products, costume jewellery and clothes.

barcelona in december- barcelona cathedral

Fira de Santa Llúcia

Venue: Pla de la Seu & Avda de la Catedral

Dates: End of November

Dating back to 1786, this traditional Christmas fair has more than 300 stalls selling all kinds of handcrafted Christmas decorations and gifts, along with mistletoe, poinsettias and Christmas trees. You’ll find a Nativity scene contest, musical parades and exhibitions.

Know before you visit Barcelona in December

Travel Essentials
What to Wear
What to Pack
barcelona in december - essentials

Time Zone: GMT +2

Currency: Euro - EUR - €

Country code: +34

Emergency numbers: 112

barcelona in december
  • Remember to carry jackets, coats, light sweaters and scarves that can serve as layers you wear/take off during the course of the day.
  • Despite being winter, it is still sunny in Barcelona, so carry a pair of sunglasses and ample sunscreen.
  • During the day, you will be comfortable in shorts, skirts, trousers and a light jacket or sweater.
  • In the evening, it can get colder, so carry scarves and heavier jackets. 
barcelona in december
  • Power Adapter: A type F plug (grounded) or a type C plug (non-grounded).
  • Clothes: Shorts, trousers, skirts, blouses, light jackets, coats, cardigans and scarves. Layering is important in Barcelona in December.
  • Comfortable shoes.
  • An umbrella in case it rains.
  • A backpack to carry around during the day with enough compartments for all your belongings.
barcelona in december - metro

By Metro: Barcelona metro is an extensive electric railway network. It runs mostly underground and has eight lines and 161 stations. Metro map.

By Bus: With 200 lines that run till late in the night extensively covering the city, exploring Barcelona by bus is convenient and cost-efficient. City bus map.

By Cable Car (Funicular): There are three cable car lines in Barcelona that you can hop onto and take in majestic views of the city. Two lines reach Tibidabo while others offer access to Montjuïc.

On Foot:Exploring Barcelona by foot, especially in December, is a great idea given the temperature. Many attractions are at a short distance from each other making for the perfect walk.

barcelona in december - hotel

With Christmas cheer and joy all around you, Barcelona in December is a treat! Choose from a variety of gorgeous hotels to spend the perfect December in Barcelona.

Budget Hotels – Hostal Boqueria, Vincci Bit, Hotel Oasis, Casa Kessler, Violeta Boutique

Mid Range - Murmuri Residence Mercader, Hotel Cuatro Naciones, Mayerling Schumann Barcelona

Luxury Hotels – Mercer Hotel, Mandarin Oriental, Grand Hotel Central, Majestic Hotel & Spa, Soho House

Barcelona in december roast pig

Try these traditional Christmas dishes in Barcelona for a memorable holiday!

Escudella: This is a stew made from chicken, beef, pork backbone and ham bone’s bouillon.

Cannelloni: This traditional dish is eaten on December 26 and is made from chicken stuffed with meat and bechamel sauce.

Cochinillo Asado: This traditional Spanish dish is essentially a roast pig served with potatoes and a brown sauce. It is very popular during Christmas. 

Mantecados and Polvorones: These are tiny, baked Christmas cookies often served with wine. 

Hacks & tips to visit Barcelona in December

  • December is a great time to visit. Expect low accommodation prices and fewer crowds around major attractions.
  • If you’re interested in watching the sunrise in Barcelona at popular attractions, it’s a lot easier since the sun rises two hours later than usual. 
  • December 6 is Constitution Day in Spain so a lot of locals get the day off and head to Barcelona making it unusually crowded for December. 
  • Don’t forget to pick up souvenirs from the Christmas markets since they’re only available once a year.
  • Wear layers of clothing and carry warm clothes since the weather is cooler in December. 

Frequently asked questions about visiting Barcelona in December

Is December a good time to visit Barcelona?

Yes, Barcelona in December has a cool, pleasant weather and fewer tourist crowds.

What are the best things to do in Barcelona in December?

The best things to do in Barcelona in December include visiting top attractions such as Sagrada Familia, Camp Nou and Casa Batllo among many others. You can also explore Barcelona's theme parks, watch a flamenco show or go on a day trip while visiting Barcelona in December.

Is Barcelona cold in December?

The average temperature of Barcelona in December ranges between a high of 13ºC and a low of 5º.

How hot is Barcelona in December?

Barcelona in December is cold as it is a winter month. Expect temperatures averaging between 13ºC and 5º.

Can you swim in Barcelona in December?

The sea is cool in December and might be difficult to swim in because of the temperature.

Is it sunny in Barcelona in December?

Though it is winter in December, the days are sunny and pleasant.

What clothes to wear in Barcelona in December?

Bring jackets, light coats, sweaters, scarves and other things to layer yourself with.

Is it rainy in Barcelona in December?

It rains for not more than 5 days in Barcelona in December.

Is Barcelona expensive to visit?

Barcelona in December is budget friendly because it is off season. Hotel and air fare prices are lower than the rest of the year. You can plan an inexpensive vacation by booking your tickets in advance online.

How safe is Barcelona?

Barcelona is generally safe for tourists. Watch out for pickpockets and petty thieves.

What can I see in Barcelona in December?

La Sagrada Familia, Park Guell, Casa Vicens, Casa Mila, Christmas Markets are some of the many attractions you can visit with much fewer crowds in Barcelona in November.

What are the major events in Barcelona in December?

Fira de Santa Llúcia, El Dia dels Sants Innocents are some major events in Barcelona in December.

What is the average temperature in Barcelona in December?

The average high is 13.8°C and the average low is 5.2°C in Barcelona in December.

What are the best things to do with Kids in Barcelona in December?

Take your kids to a traditional Christmas market and museum hopping are exciting things to do with your kids in Barcelona in December.