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One of Catalonia's most famous traditions is that of the "castells" (castles), which are human towers that are lifted by building different levels of people until reaching insane heights that can go up to ten stories. There is no mechanical help, and tens and even hundreds of people can take part in it. The "castellers" are the people who carry out this activity, which is over 200 years old.
Acknowledged as Immaterial Cultural Heritage by Unesco, his origin is believed to be around the area of Tarragona, Catalonia's second most important province after Barcelona. During the 20th Century this practice spread all over Catalonia. The "castellers" are grouped in "colles" that normally take the name of its place of origin.
The Santa Eulàlia Festival, the winter festival of Barcelona, is for all the family. During these magical days, tribute is paid to the brave Laia, the girl who rebelled to defend her aims. For the city of Barcelona, this girl was a symbol of solidarity, in defence of justice and commitment to young people. Santa Eulàlia and la Mare de Déu de la Mercè are co-patron saints of Barcelona. To celebrate this festival, different activities are organized for all the family. You can’t miss the giants, the processions or the firework street run, human towers, sardanas dancing and musical bands throughout different routes of the city, apart from other activities for both young and old.
On 12th February, the Santa Eulàlia feast day, several events are held, such as raising the Penó de Santa Eulàlia (reproduction of an old banner of the city) on the balcony of City Hall, sardanas dancing, giants...
It dates back to over half a century and can boast that it offers live music 356 days a year. The Sala Jamboree is the Barcelona temple of jazz par excellence, where great legends and young promises of jazz have played. Figures like Bill Coleman, Kenny Drew, Chet Baker, Ponny Poindexter, Art Farmer, Lou Bennet, Stéphan Grappelli, Kenny Clarke, Cecil Taylor, Elvin Jones, Steve Grossman and Al FosGordon have all been on stage.
All styles are represented, from vanguard to Dixieland passing through bop, fusion, vocal jazz, mainstream, nu-jazz, tango-jazz, flamenco jazz and Latin jazz, without forgetting other Afroamerican styles such as blues and gospel.
This venue is a cultural benchmark of Barcelona, which won the Gold Medal of the city.
Family Activities at Poble Espanyol
A large area, totally free of traffic, with different places to explore, most of them in the open air. That's the Poble Espanyol de Barcelona, an iconic visitor attraction in the heart of Montjuïc. Every weekend, there's a different activity: theatre, dance, music, magic, treasure hunts, etc. Throughout the year there are loads of activities to ensure you have a great day out with the family: Carnival, a Giants' Parade, a Puppet Festival, the Click and Go Fair, the Main Festival, the Medieval Fair, Christmas at the Poble, Halloween... and many more surprises!. In short, a wide range of activities for all the family.
Salón del Manga de Barcelona Manga Fair
The time has come to get the cosplay costumes out of the wardrobe once again for this new edition of the manga fair in Barcelona. The fact that there has been an event dedicated to this Japanese art form for almost a quarter of a century demonstrates the commitment of fans of all ages, in and around the city, to the popular Japanese comic and its pop culture in general.
For a whole week there will be appearances by scriptwriters and cartoonists from all over the world, new publications, film marathons and workshops that explore different aspects of manga and anime or offer the opportunity to dress up as our favorite characters. In addition, of course, to a large number of CD, DVD, comics, books, illustrations and merchandising stands.
Model Barcelona Architecture Festival
The Model festival, which is being held from 20 to 30 April, will be the first major event for when Barcelona becomes the World Capital of Architecture in 2026. Model is a plural and multidisciplinary space for reflection addressing the main challenges of the 21st century, such as climate change, from an architectural and urban planning perspective. For two weeks, the streets of Barcelona will become a laboratory for architectural experimentation, where people can visit ephemeral installations, attend conferences, see shows, participate in workshops and much more. This joint initiative of Barcelona City Council and the Architects' Association of Catalonia will transform the city's urban space into a party for its residents for a few days.
International Musem Day The Night of Museums
May sees two excellent events for those who love visiting museums. On May 18, International Museum Day is celebrated, a European initiative that sees numerous institutions open their doors for free and put on a special programme of activities. The aim is to raise awareness in visitors about the key role museums and other cultural centres can play in the development of society.
At the same time, on May 13, Barcelona holds its Night of Museums, when participating venues stay open until night, offering a different way to experience the permanent and temporary exhibitions currently on show, as well as the chance to enjoy different activities, such as family workshops, live performances and guided tours. This is also a global event, one that started in Berlin in 1997 and is now celebrated in around 120 European cities each year. Signed up to the two events in Barcelona are a wide variety of centres whose specialisations include art, archeology, history, author, ethnology, paleontology, ceramics, zoology, movies, design and much more.
Night of the Museums: 13th May.
International Museum Day: 18th May.
Dates 2023 not yet confirmedBarcelona is once again celebrating its grand festival, in honor of its patron saint. A program full of different activities is planned for all the public, with music, dance, circus and street arts. And not forgetting the giants, dragons, fire beasts, human towers and sardana groups.
La Mercè is also a festival of street arts with the MAC festival, Mercè Arts de Carrer. This is a festival which has become a showcase of new creations, and the meeting place for many artists, both from the city and overseas. The BAM Festival, Barcelona Acció Musical, will fill the streets with today's popular rhythms and concerts.
La Mercè will end, as always, with the traditional fireworks and music display. an explosion of light and sound, which has become one of the most expected and acclaimed events for the people of Barcelona and its visitors.
The Swab contemporary art fair has now been running for fifteen years, and remains faithful to its mission of acting as an experimental platform for emerging artistic ideas. Founded by the architect and collector Joaquín Diez-Cascón, Swab is an event that brings together some 80 galleries from the international art scene. The fair strives for close contact with the public, selecting and presenting the freshest proposals on the international scene, reflecting the latest trends and innovations in the art world.
For the 9th consecutive year, Art Barcelona is promoting the Barcelona Gallery Weekend. This consists of four days dedicated to discovering the most modern and radically up-to-date art through a general programme of exhibitions in contemporary and modern art galleries, as well as a parallel programme of special activities in the galleries and collaborating spaces. The programme includes guided tours led by the exhibiting artists and other activities such as screenings, debates and dance. Visit the various galleries and immerse yourself in the latest trends and artistic languages.
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