I had a ten-year love affair with Barcelona. The city gave me so much over the decade I spent living there: a language, a husband, a dog, friendships, and a deep appreciation for the Mediterranean diet and lifestyle.
I don’t live in Big City Barcelona anymore. I’m back in the Pacific Northwest, where I grew up. But I spend several months each year in Spain and lead tours to Barcelona and the beautiful countryside surrounding the metropolis.
Here’s the thing about iconic destinations such as Barcelona, Rome, Paris, Lisbon…anytime is good.
There is so much to see in these hot spots that it does not matter if it’s February (hey, lower hotel prices and flights), or March, or November. August is humid, but then the beaches or great, so there’s an upside. You can always hang out in the AC in a museum or embrace the famous Spanish nightlife when the sun goes down.
Why autumn is the best time to be in Barcelona:
- Seaside. The Mediterranean Sea is perfecto. It’s had the entire summer to warm up and is ideal swimming temperature by September. I often swim until mid-October in Barcelona.
- Fewer crowds. Kids are back in school. The Euro summer season is over. People are working again. This is all good for you, traveler.
- Festivals. The best celebration in Barcelona is called La Merce (honoring its patron saint) and takes place in the last part of September each year.
- Fall foods. As we move into autumn, mushrooms start making their way to the markets and onto plates, sautéed in garlic and olive oil. Served simply with a cold glass of white wine. Yum.
- Hiking. We do some walking along the Costa Brava in the fall when the weather is cooler. No one really wants to hike in July and August (that’s pool time). But in October, the sun is still out but the temps are good for trekking.
- Lower airfare. You will pay more if you go to Barcelona in the summer when everyone else is. You will also have to deal with more airport nonsense since there are larger crowds. Things thin out in the fall and rates drop. Of course, you’ll get better rates in the winter (February and March) but no swimming in the Med. Check Google Flights to compare airfare.
Let’s face it. It does not matter all that much when you go. Just go. See this incredible city. Take a day trip to the Costa Brava. Dive into the foodie scene. Shop the unique boutiques for local designs. Hit the beach. Tour the Picasso Museum. Drool over Antoni Gaudí architecture. Party down with other revelers.
Barcelona stole my heart a long time ago. We have a long-distance relationship now, but I still love her, and I think you will too.