If you’re trying to work out the best time to visit Barcelona, bear in mind that every 24 September the city celebrates one of its patron saints, La Mercè, by organising all kinds of activities. Whoever you’re travelling with, you’re bound to have a great time!
Where to sleep in Barcelona during La Mercè
Before setting off to Barcelona, make sure you’ve got your accommodation sorted. At Friendly Rentals we’ve got the answer for you! Choose one of our central, fully equipped apartments at unbeatable prices and experience the city in full swing. Check out our apartments in the city centre, near the Parc de la Ciutadella, Plaça de Sant Jaume, Barceloneta or Plaça d’Espanya, five key locations during the La Mercè festivities.
La Mercè programme: key events
Once you’ve booked your accommodation in Barcelona and planned your trip, it’s time to study the programme in detail. Every year sees a new guest city invited and new activities to entertain the whole family, although most events are repeated year on year. Here are some of the must-see events:
1. La Mercè musical fireworks display.
If you want a spectacular firework display where water and music are the stars, this is the one for you. Every year there is a different theme, and every year it attracts more and more locals and tourists alike.
2. La Mercè run.
This 10 km run takes in some of the city’s main tourist sights, such as Arc de Triomf and Gran Via de les Corts Catalanes. A unique opportunity for runners to discover Barcelona in an original way.
3. Barceloneta firework display.
At night the city’s beaches throng with people eager to watch the start of the International Pyrotechnics Festival. A spectacular light and colour show by the sea.
4. Circus during La Mercè.
Montjuïc Castle becomes a giant circus tent during La Mercè. The top local and international circus companies present acrobatics, humour and performances to thrill young and old alike.
5. Traditional celebrations.
La Mercè includes lots of traditional celebrations you’ll love if you’re new to the city. Don’t miss the Correfoc de la Mercè, where fire-breathing beasts dance alongside devils through the main streets. During the day, you’ll see giant papier-mâché heads and figures doing the same during the Cercavila de la Mercè, only without any fire. In Plaça de Sant Jaume, there are mappings onto City Hall and teams from all over Catalonia building breathtaking human towers.
6. Family activities and dance.
If you’re coming to Barcelona with kids, there are lots of activities for children during La Mercè at Montjuïc Castle and the Parc de la Ciutadella, which also puts on lots of dance shows during La Mercè.
7. Concerts during La Mercè.
There are always concerts in Barcelona, but nothing matches those during La Mercè. Families and groups of friends get together to have a great time watching top Spanish and international performers. Avinguda Maria Cristina and Plaça de Catalunya are the main sites.
8. Theatre in Barcelona.
If you love theatre, make the most of the discounts on offer during La Mercè to see the best shows in town.
9. Open days
Finally, many buildings in Barcelona open their doors to locals and tourists alike for free during La Mercè, so make the most of it! The Palauet Albéniz is amazing inside and out and is rarely open to the public. Visit all its rooms and enjoy the activities in the gardens. The perfect place to spend a different kind of day in Barcelona!