Essential Things to Know about Barcelona for a Successful Trip
Whether you're traveling to Barcelona for business or pleasure, there is important information you might want to know about the Catalan capital before you get there. Read on to find out essential facts that will come in handy.
The languages spoken: Spanish and Catalan
Weather: Barcelona has a hot-summer Mediterranean climate, with August being the hottest month (average high: 74 degrees F / 24 degrees C). January is the coldest, with an average low of 47.8 F (8.8 C).
What Documents Do You Need to Get to Barcelona? EU citizens only need a valid ID card or password to enter Spain. While some non-EU countries don't require visas for short stays, most do and may also need documents that justify the purpose and conditions of the stay.
Bank Holidays: There are many bank holidays and celebrations in Barcelona, during which most shops, banks and offices are closed:
- New Year's day
- January 6 – Epiphany
- February 12 - Saint Eulalia Day
- Good Friday (two days before Easter Sunday)
- Easter Monday
- Pentecost (50 days after Easter Day)
- June 24 – St. John's Day
- August 15 – The Assumption of Mary
- September 11 – The National Day of Catalonia
- September 24 – La Mercé Festival
- October 12 – Columbus Day
- Christmas Day
- December 26 – Saint Stephen's Day
Mealtimes in Barcelona can be a bit confusing. Restaurants are usually open between 1:30 / 2 pm and 4 pm for lunch, while for dinner, between 9 pm to 11:30 pm / 12 am.
Banks are open from Monday to Friday between 8:30 am and 2 pm, while offices operate between 9 am and 6-7 pm.
You can do your shopping in most stores from Monday to Saturday, between 9:30 / 10 am and 8 pm, but keep in mind that smaller shops and businesses close for siesta at 2 pm and open again around 4:30 or 5 m.
Vaccines: You do not need any vaccinations to enter Spain and, implicitly, Barcelona. However, if you will be venturing out to the countryside or spending your time in nature, it is recommended to have your anti-tetanus vaccine up to date. In exceptional cases, the authorities may request you to undergo medical examinations to ensure you are not afflicted by any worrisome diseases listed in the IHR that require quarantine.
Sales for Shopping There are two major shopping sales in the city. The summer sales come with 20%-70% discounts and lasts from mid-July till the end of August, while the winter one starts around the beginning of January and lasts till the end of February.