What to do in February in Catalonia

February brings with it impressive public light shows, parades and fancy-dress for carnival, and the season of eating one of the most traditional Catalan green onions - calçots! 

Canarian rap group Locoplaya, who play in Fabra i Coats for the Cara·B festival (photo courtesy of Cara·B)
Canarian rap group Locoplaya, who play in Fabra i Coats for the Cara·B festival (photo courtesy of Cara·B) / ACN

ACN | Barcelona

February 1, 2020 10:40 AM

  1. An American in Paris with live Orchestra | Coliseum Theatre | February 4

With a soundtrack from legendary composer George Gershwin, An American in Paris is one of cinema’s all time gems. The 1951 classic was actually a Broadway musical before being adapted for the silver screen, and you get the chance to see the production accompanied by 60 orchestral musicians performing live in tandem with the movie. Catch An American in Paris in Coliseum Theatre on February 4. 

  1. Festival Cara·B | Urban music and culture festival | February 14-15

Cara•B is an independent and urban music culture festival taking place in Barcelona’s Fabra i Coats arts factory, a space for artists to work in and where exhibitions are put on display. The Cara•B festival gives a platform to some of the best up-and-coming artists around, with a focus on the freshest alternative sounds. Over two nights, enjoy live performances, screenings, and exhibitions from a range of independent artists such as Locoplaya, and Los Punsetes. 

  1. Guitar BCN 2020 | Jethro Tull | February 28

Guitar BCN is a celebration of the best rock music the country has to offer, taking place with concerts in some of the most iconic venues in Barcelona. Jethro Tull are considered in the realm with other pioneers of rock music, with their influence stretching as far back as their hard rock and blues days in the late 1960s. The legendary British rockers take to the stage at Barts on February 28. 

  1. Calçots | Throughout Catalonia | All month

When February comes, it’s finally calçot season! One of Catalonia’s favourite traditions is to eat these long scallions accompanied by another authentic Catalan favourite - the Romesco sauce! With the vegetables ripe in the early springtime, a common activity for locals is to put on what is called a “calçotada” - a feast of the long onions, enjoyed with friends!

  1. Festes de Santa Eulàlia | Throughout Barcelona | February 7-12

Most cities and towns have their own ‘festa major’ celebration, but Barcelona actually two. Santa Eulalia is the city’s patron saint, and her festivities take place in the middle of February, while La Mercè is celebrated in September. Expect live music, dance shows, parades, and much more. Consult the full programme of events here

  1. Llum BCN | Poblenou, Barcelona | February 14-16

One of the most experimental festivals in the Catalan cultural calendar lights up the Barcelona neighbourhood of Poblenou for a February weekend every year. Llum BCN turns the whole area into a gigantic light show for locals, with beautiful and intriguing projections and installations. A showcase of the city’s ever-emerging talent, it is art students from Barcelona’s universities who create the impressive displays.

  1. Carnival | Throughout Catalonia | February 18-25

While in most of the western world, Halloween is the time of year to go out and party in costume, but things are done a little different in Catalonia, and Carnival, in February, is the time for fancy dress. Hugely popular in the beautiful seaside town of Sitges, Carnival, kicks off with the traditional Mantillas parade on Tuesday, February 18th, with even bigger parades taking place the following Sunday and Tuesday. 

  1. Razzmatazz and Apolo concerts | February 18 & 27

As always, Barcelona is a hub of global culture, and the biggest names in music always make sure to stop by the Catalan shores on their tours. This February, Apolo and Razzmatazz play host to some of the most exciting names in indie. English rock group Editors play at the iconic Razzmatazz venue on February 18th, while on February 27, Catalan-Irish singer-songwriter Nuria Graham, whose new album titled Marjorie is out this month, takes to the stage at Apolo.  

  1. Barcelona half marathon | February 16

Now open for registrations, put your stamina to the test at the Barcelona half marathon! Run through some of the most important streets in the Catalan capital, such as Gran Vía, Parallel, and Diagonal alongside thousands of other racers. Last year, a record amount of participants ran the Barcelona half marathon, with over 19,000 competing in the 21km course. This year, the race begins and ends at the top of Parc de la Ciutadella, at the Passeig Lluís Companys side. 

  1. Vivaldi's Four Seasons | Palau de la Musica | Feb 20

Antonio Vivaldi’s best known work brought breathed life into the four seasons of the year, from the flower-strewn meadows and eternal hope that comes with spring at the beginning of the year, through to the harsh breath of a horrid wind in the winter. The musical work was accompanied by sonnets, meaning it was one of the earliest examples of program music - music set to a narrative. Enjoy this splendid masterpiece in the incredible Palau de la Musica Catalana on February 20.