As if Barcelona wasn’t exciting enough, every year since 1817 the neighborhood of Gràcia throws a giant “block party” – Festa Major de Gràcia. This year it’s on from August 15 to 21.
Gràcia is a nice, centrally located neighborhood, the smallest of Barcelona’s “barrios, not far from the oldest part of town.The party is thrown by locals, who have to contend with around 1.5 million visitors every year. This would be enough for any neighborhood to call off partying, but the residents of Gràcia seem to live by the motto “The more, the merrier“.
Catalonians (and Spanish in general) love street and block parties and do them well. They put them on for themselves – if other people show up, great. There is no entrance fee, beer is dirt cheap, and all other food or drink items are sold at normal market prices, no mark-ups. Incredible, if you think of the general kaffafel and the strain on the infrastructure. All kind of harmless crazy behavior is encouraged and streets are decorated to create really magical environments to get lost in. Chinese lanterns, pyrotechnics, and giant papier mâché figurines abound. Here are some Instagram moments from this year’s party:
Somebody found time to shop for espadrilles, and gorgeous ones, too!
Party it up, Barcelona!
Some of the info courtesy of this article on the Lonely Planet website.