January: What to do in Catalonia this month

Enjoy concerts, markets, and an orchestral performance accompanying one of the greatest cinematic works ever made, in this quieter period following the Christmas season

Shot from the movie '2001: A Space Odyssey'
Shot from the movie '2001: A Space Odyssey' / Cillian Shields

Cillian Shields | Barcelona

January 12, 2020 09:36 AM

  1. Guitar BCN 2020 | Rock festival | January 25 & 31

Guitar BCN is a celebration of the best rock music the country has to offer, in some of the most iconic venues in Barcelona. Among the highlights performing this month are Los Secretos, one of the biggest names during the Movida Madrileña countercultural movement in the 1980s which exploded shortly after the death of dictator Franco. Also taking to the stage for the festival is Coque Malla, singer songwriter who recently achieved fame for his Goya award winning Este es el momento, written for the film ‘Campeones.’ The festival then continues into February and March with more concerts. 

  1. Tiana Negra | Noir Fiction festival | January 17 & 18

Crime fiction that blurs the lines between right and wrong, flawed anti-heros as protagonists, and detectives on the cases of mysteries; the noir fiction genre offers much intrigue in the world of literature. The Tiana Negra noir fiction festival has been a fixture in the calendar since 2013 and celebrates the genre in the Catalan language. Meet authors and fans alike at the two-day gathering in the town of Tiana, just north of Barcelona. 

  1. Els Tres Tombs 2020 | Sant Antoni festival | From January 17

Els Tres Tombs is a celebration of Saint Anthony the Great, known as the protector of animals. In the Barcelona neighbourhood of Sant Antoni, named for the saint, a celebration of his memory is held every year, with parades of donkeys as he is also renowned for being the patron saint of porters and mule renters. Enjoy the festivities kicking off from January 17th that will include dancing, delicacy tastings, bonfires, parades and more. See the full programme here.

And for some trivia, did you know that saint Anthony the Great is said to have died at the grand old age of 105 in the year 356?

  1. Sant Antoni 10km | Race | January 19

Running is a hugely popular activity in Catalonia, and the locals live for the races that come about usually when there’s a traditional neighbourhood festival, or even the official marathon and 10Ks ran in cities across the country. One of the biggest races in Barcelona is the Sant Antoni 10K, which forms part of the neighborhood's Festa Major. The run takes place on Sunday, January 19 at 9.30 in the morning, and will be the 42nd edition of the Sant Antoni 10K. 

  1. 2001: A Space Odyssey | Concert performance | January 10, 11, 12

One of the greatest works of cinema ever made was created with the intention to be experienced accompanied by a live orchestra, adding emphasis to the grandiosity of outer space. In L’Auditori, Barcelona’s magnificent concert hall, enjoy Stanley Kubrick’s 1968 classic ‘2001: A Space Odyssey’ along with a live orchestral performance. The unmissable show will be performed three times with prices starting from €12. 

  1. The Nutcracker in Terrassa | January 11 & 12 

One of the best known ballets across the globe, Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker comes to Terrassa thanks to the work of the Barcelona ballet. The two-act work has become a staple during the Christmas season in the last half-century, don’t miss your chance to see the fabulous arrangement in the city just outside Barcelona. Two performances will take place on January 11 and 12. 

  1. El Flea Market | January 12

Christmas is a time with plenty of parties and presents to buy, so it’s understandable that January is a month when everyone’s budgets are a little tighter. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t go out and find yourself a bargain in one of the biggest markets Barcelona has to offer. El Flea Market is held every second Sunday of the month in Plaça Blanquerna in Drassanes, just behind the Maritime Museum, and there you’ll be able to find amazing vintage shirts, jumpers, tops, jeans, anything your heart desires! 

  1. Mozart & Beethoven by Candlelight | January 16

In the square in front of Basílica de Santa Maria del Pi, come for a special night of Mozart and Beethoven like you’ve never experienced before. The Dalia quartet are putting on a fabulous arrangement of works from the two mythical composers, to be enjoyed by candlelight on January 16. Among the pieces that will be played are Mozart’s Quartet K.80 (Adagio y Allegro) and Beethoven’s Quartet Op.18 #3 (Allegro y Presto).

  1. Beethoven 250 festival | January 24, 25, 26, 31

2020 sees the 250th anniversary of the birth of the German composer and pianist Ludwig van Beethoven, and as such, Barcelona is celebrating his life, work, and legacy with the Beethoven 250 festival. The programme is divided into five different sessions, with different musicians taking charge of each. The first is led by the Barcelona Symphony Orchestra, and sees them put on three performances in L’Auditori on January 24, 25, and 26. Kazushi Ono then takes up the mantle for the second session, kicking off on January 31. 

  1. Girona 10 hotels and restaurant offers | January 25, 26, 27

Every year, the city council of Girona offers incredible deals on hotel accommodation and meals in some of the world’s best restaurants for a mere €10. Those who want to avail of this fantastic opportunity must enter into a draw, as demand is too high to let everyone enjoy these delights. Apply at girona10.net from January 13 and be in with a chance to enjoy world-class experiences at unbelievably low prices.