What we have on in Barcelona this week


If you go down to the park today… Mammoth! Run! | Photo: Tom Walton

With Tuesday being a national holiday for the Primero de Mayo, this week we have — unusually — an event today, Monday, on our social programme.

  • Monday 30th | The barrio of Barceloneta was built on reclaimed land and dates back only to the 18th century but once housed Barcelona's fishermen and then, later, factories. Both are now long gone and have been replaced by a lot of noisy tourists, but the district still retains a peculiar, original flavour (16.00).
  • Tuesday 1st| National holiday in Spain
  • Wednesday 2nd | Our walk this afternoon takes us to vit the lovely Parque de la Ciudadela (photo, above) built on the site of the fortress built to dominate the city after the siege of 1714, which was demolished in 1868 and then became the site — in 1888 — of Barcelona's first Universal Exposition. If you're interested in architecture, and the history of Barcelona, there are some fascinating things to see on today's trip (16.00).
  • Thursday 3rd | The Feria de Abril here in Barcelona isn't quite the spectacular event that it is in Sevilla and Jerez, but come down to the Forum with us this afternoon and we think you'll find the Feria de Abril de Catalunya interesting (16.00).
  • Friday 4th | Join us this evening at our Friday Club language exchange. It's a great place to kick off the weekend — and to practise your Spanish !! In the bar/on the terrace, 19.00-21.00.

Join us in Spanish Reception (C floor), unless otherwise stated, at the times given above.

Also this week | In the Spanish League, with Barça newly crowned champions, it's the big one — Barça vs Real Madrid (Sunday, kick-off 20.45). Get yourself a seat in a bar with a large screen (we're assuming that a VIP ticket for the game, from €2,270, is probably a bit steep for you).

Sant Jordi on our social programme

A rose for Sant Jordi

A rose for Sant Jordi | Photo: Tom Walton

It's a very special week in Barcelona. Come with us on our social programme (especially Monday) and see why.

  • Monday 23rd | It's Sant Jordi (St. George), the patron saint of Catalonia, and a very special day in the Barcelona year. We give books and roses to our loved ones. Come with us this afternoon and see what's happening around the (completely packed!) city centre.
  • Wednesday 25th | Come with us this afternoon to visit Montjuic.
  • Thursday 26th | Feria de abril
  • Friday 27 | We have a different theme each week for our Friday Club language exchange. Come along and celebrate in the bar/on the terrace (19.00-21.00)

The Raval, Andy Warhol and Modernist architecture on this week's social programme

Street art, Raval

Street art in the Raval, by Guaté Mao | Photo: Tom Walton

It's just got noticeably colder in Barcelona (ok, yes, it is mid-November!) so bring a jacket with you if you come with us on our social programme this week, though you can still expect it to be sunny! Cold but sunny — the time Barcelona looks its finest.

  • Tuesday 7th | Come for a stroll around the Raval, the district on the right of the Ramblas as you head down towards the port. One of the best places in Barcelona to go to find street art (see photo, above), it was a rather seedy red light district but is now home to the CCCB and the MACBA and Fernando Botero's fat cat, and (in keeping with its past) to the protagonists of many of Barcelona's novelas negras (16.00).
  • Wednesday 8th | Take a walk with us this afternoon along the Moll de la Fusta [see photos], which takes us from the wonderful Catalan History museum, across the old port past the Maremagnum shopping and leisure centre to the statue of Columbus and the bottom of the Ramblas (16.00).
  • Thursday 9th | Until Decemmber 31st, the CaixaForum has an Andy Warhol exhibition on. Formerly a textile factory, later used as police horse stables, it's now one of Barcelona's best art museums and, designed by Josep Puig i Cadafalch, an excellent example of how Modernist architecture wasn't just used to build houses for the rich! Entrance fee €4 (16.00).
  • Friday 10th | You've got to start your Barcelona weekend somewhere. Why not start it with us at our Friday Club language exchange, where you can practise all the languages you know? In the bar/on the terrace, 19.00-21.00.

Join us in Spanish Reception (C floor), unless otherwise stated, at the times given above.

Also this week | If film is your thing, you might like Barcelona's Asian Film Festival, on until November 12.

Barcelona's wonderful architecture on this week's social programme

The prize-winning video of one of Gaudí's most famous Barcelona houses, the Casa Batlló

Here in Barcelona we have another of those crazy weeks with a holiday in the middle of it. But that won't stop social programme ! It's perhaps especially interesting this week if you have an interest in architecture….

  • Tuesday 31st | Our walk this afternoon takes us to the Manzana de la Discordia, the block on Passeig de Gracia with three of Barcelona's best examples of Modernista architecture — the Casa Batlló (Gaudí); the Casa Amatller (Puig i Cadafalch); and the Casa Lleó i Morera (Domènech i Montaner); as well as to the Casa Milà (also by Gaudí), which is further up the street on the other side (16.00).
  • Wednesday 1st | National holiday in Spain (Día de Todos los Santos), no classes, school closed
  • Thursday 2nd | Apart from Sagrada Familia, the city has a number of other lovely churches. Come with us today to see the Joyas del Gótico, the "Gothic jewels" of Barcelona — the Cathedral and the wonderful churches of Santa María del Pí and Santa María del Mar, the latter the subject of a book we always recommend, La Catedral del Mar (16.00).
  • Friday 3rd | It's hard to believe, but Via Laietana (just along the road from IH Barcelona) is little more than 100 years old. Driven through the heart of the old city between 1908 and 1913 (in the video, above), it's now one of Barcelona's busiest streets. Come with us and discover more of its history this afternoon (16.00).
  • Friday 3rd | Come back to school after our walk and get yourself some extra Spanish practice at our Friday Club language exchange (in the bar/on the terrace, 19.00-21.00).

Join us in Spanish Reception (C floor), unless otherwise stated, at the times given above.

Also this week | Spanish League, Barça vs Seville (Saturday, kick-off 20.45).

If Game of Thrones, rather than football is your thing, the Game of Thrones Exhibition is now open at the Maritime Museum.

Come and explore Barcelona on our social programme

Plaza España

Plaza España and Las Arenas | Photo: Tom Walton

So we didn't in the end become an independent nation last week (though we might be by the time you read this!) Meanwhile, on our social programme

  • Tuesday 17th | Although in Roman times Barcelona was far less important than Tarragona, 100km down the coast, the Romans left behind the remains of the city of Barcino that they founded in 15 BC: the Roman Temple and the traces of the Roman walls on top of which the city's medieval walls were largely built are among the things you'll see on our walk this afternoon (16.00).
  • Wednesday 18th | Transformed for the 1929 Universal Exhibition, the Plaza España is within walking distance of so much: the Las Arenas shopping mall in the former bullring (great view from the top!); Miró's Dona i Ocell (no sniggering!); the outstanding art collection at the MNAC (housed in the Palacio Nacional, built for the Exhibition); the former factory, now art museum of the CaixaForum and lots more besides. We won't actually be going into the latter, but you might want to, afterwards (16.00).
  • Thursday 19th | Our "Barcelona y el mar" walk today takes us down to the port and the seafront, and to the barrio of Barceloneta (where they aren't too happy with noisy tourists!) for a different perspective on the city (16.00)!
  • Friday 20th | It's Selfie Night at this week's Friday Club language exchange. Join us for the fun and games in the bar/on the terrace (19.00-21.00).

Join us in Spanish Reception (C floor), unless otherwise stated, at the times given above.

Also this week | Champions, Barça vs Olympiakos (Wednesday, kick-off 20.45); Spanish League, Barça vs Malaga (Saturday, kick-off 20.45).