Shopping in Barcelona
Barcelona is the dream city for the most shopping-loving. The selection of shops is huge, all the well-known brands are represented, and you will also find local designs that can be absolutely phenomenal. Prices are generally somewhat lower than we are used to in Norway, but not necessarily when it comes to the most luxurious brands.
Here you will find the best shopping:
- Passeig de Gracia– This is one of the two most important shopping streets. Passeig de Gracia starts at Placa de Catalunya and goes uphill towards the mountains. Here you will find the most exclusive stores such as Gucci, Dolce & Gabbana, Prada and Jimmy Choo, as well as stores for watches, jewelry and accessories such as Swarovski, Bvlgari, Rolex, and others.
- Portal del Angel– This shopping street also starts on Placa de Catalunya, and goes in the direction of the port and beaches of Barcelona. Here they go especially in the big chains such as Zara, H&M, Mango and Massimo Dutti, in addition to smaller shoe stores, as well as the occasional store with local design.
- El Corte Ingles– This is the largest department store in Europe. Located on Placa de Catalunya, El Corte Ingles is set over 9 floors. Each of the floors is divided according to to make shopping easier, such as a separate floor for men’s clothing, one for children’s clothing, one for accessories, and so on. The department store contains not only fashion, although this dominates, but also electronics, furniture, and much more, in addition to one of the city’s largest supermarkets.
Five shopping centers:
- Maremagnum– shopping center down at the harbor which is open on Sundays. The address is Moll d’Espanya 5.
- Las Arenas– shopping center in a former bullring. The address is Gran Via de les Corts Catalanes 373.
- El Triangle– small but good shopping center on Placa de Catalunya 1-4.
- Diagonal Mar– Shopping center near Mar Bella Beach, and right next to the Hilton hotel. The address is Avinguda Diagonal 3.
- Centro Comercial Glories– good shopping center if you need fashion clothes. The address is Avinguda Diagonal 208.
Looking for something special?
- Calle Verdi (in the Gracia district) is the street to shop in if you are looking for local design.
- Calle Tallers (in the El Raval district) is the street to shop in if you are looking for used and vintage.
- El Bornis the district you want to go to if you want to go in fancy boutiques.
- Calle Seneca 28 is the address you want to go to if you are looking for design from Lydia Delgado, Spain’s fashion queen.
- La Roca Village north of Barcelona (half an hour by taxi, some more by train) is the place for outlet shopping (about 100 shops and brands). Great opportunities to save a lot of money!
Shopped a lot? Get some of your money back
Since we are not full members of the EU, we have the right to get the VAT back when we shop in Spain, among other places. This does not apply to drinks, food, accommodation, tickets and such, but merchandise such as clothing and electronics.
IVA (VAT in Spanish) is currently 21%, and you get it again when you shop in stores with the sticker in the window that says “Tax Free Shopping Service”. You must shop for more than 90 Euros, and the refund form must be completed correctly.
Allow yourself plenty of time at the airport, because that’s where you get your money back. You must first visit a separate counter for customs, and you may be asked to present the goods for which you require a refund. There you will then receive a check that you cash in at the exchange office next door. Remember that it can be long queues.
Five exciting festivals in Barcelona
In this city, it is almost always an exciting festival to join in. Thus, it does not matter when in the year you visit Barcelona. Nevertheless, we have selected five of the most exciting and fun festivals, all in very different genres. Maybe one of them is for you? Remember that both flights, hotels and festival tickets can be picked up quickly, especially if there are several events in the city at the same time. Start planning early!
- La Mercè– This festival is held in honor of the Mare de Déu de la Mercè, Barcelona’s patron saint. La Mercè is held every year and lasts one week until 24 September. Here you can experience fantastic dancing, costumes and an insane fireworks show.
- Barcelona Carnival– The Barcelona Carnival is a month-long event that takes place every year from the beginning of February to the beginning of March. The most important parades and parties, however, are the first week. The carnival in the city is a tradition that started as early as 1333.
- Voll-Damm Festival Internacional de Jazz de Barcelona– The Jazz Festival lasts for a full two months, and is considered one of Europe’s finest of its kind. Here you can hear and see top bands and artists from all over the world, at concerts that take place all over the city. The concerts are often paired with other events, such as food or wine festivals.
- Sala Montjuic– The film festival, where all the films are shown outdoors, usually lasts from the beginning of July to the beginning of August. The canvases are set up on Montjuic Hill, and everything from classics to indie films are shown. Sit outside in beautiful surroundings, have a drink, and enjoy a good movie after the sun goes down in Barcelona.
- Festa de Sant Medir– The festival for those who have a sugar tooth! Tons of sweets are given away in the parade that takes place in the Gracia district every year on March 3. When all the candy is consumed, it all ends with fireworks and fun.