Ciutat Vella Nightlife, Barcelona (Self Guided)

It is safe to say that Barcelona is one of those cities that never sleeps. Whatever kind of nightlife entertainment you may think of – a classy music joint or a swanky club to have a drink in and more – you will find it all in Barcelona. This walking tour takes you to some of the best discos and bars in the Ciutat Vella district.
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Ciutat Vella Nightlife Map

Guide Name: Ciutat Vella Nightlife
Guide Location: Spain » Barcelona (See other walking tours in Barcelona)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 6
Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.5 km
Author: Xena
1
Jamboree

1) Jamboree

Jamboree, meaning “tribal reunion” in Zulu, is a Barcelona landmark on the jazz scene. Throughout its long history, this basement club has attracted some of the biggest names to perform on its stage, including the likes of Ornette Coleman, Chet Baker, Lou Bennet, Dexter Gordon, and more. A cultural highlight of the city, Jamboree practically defines the nightlife scene in the Placa Reial area. Nightly live entertainment includes jazz, Latin, and blues bands by mainly Spanish performers. On Monday nights guests are treated to the enormously popular WTF Jazz Jam that attracts a mainly younger local crowd. The upstairs sister venue, Los Tarantos, hosts Flamenco performances early in the evening, then joins with Jamboree late nights playing a mix of funk, R and B, and hip hop, while the performing stage is turned into a makeshift dance floor.

Operation hours: Monday – Sunday: 9 pm – 5 am
2
Sidecar Factory Club

2) Sidecar Factory Club

A modest sized club with a dark and intimate setting, the Sidecar Factory Club is located in the center of the city. Open nightly to a diverse crowd consisting of both tourists and locals, the Sidecar features a variety of musical genres to entice its guests throughout the week. Reaching a capacity of 300 persons, this small club can get pretty packed on certain nights, the weekends in particular. Comprising a single open space, modest dance floor and, and a small stage, on a few nights throughout the week guests can catch a live musical act, usually indie rock, while late nights are ruled by DJs spinning anything from dance to rock music starting at midnight.

Operation hours: Monday – Thursday: 7 pm – 5 am; Saturday: 7 pm – 6 am
3
Cafe Marula

3) Cafe Marula

Located in the center of the historic Gotic district in Barcelona, despite the implication of its name, Cafe Marula is a chic nightclub decorated inside with a minimalist theme, blending wood, steel, and glass elements in to an elegant design. Holding a capacity of up to 400 guests, Cafe Marula treats its guests to a wonderful and diverse blend of music from R and B, funk and soul, to jazz, hip hop, or Afrobeat, keeping a particular focus on danceable tunes. Cafe Marula hosts both local favorites and international DJs such as Nickodemus and Roger C, and includes a stage for live band performances as well. This hot club attracts a more mature crowd made up of both tourists and locals, and gets packed on the weekends in particular.

Operation hours: Sunday – Wednesday: 11 pm – 5 am; Friday-Saturday: 11 pm – 6 am
4
Moog

4) Moog

A very small club with an excellent reputation both locally and worldwide, Moog is one of the best venues in Barcelona for house and techno music from a number of schools. Consisting of two floors, each with its own dance floor and full bar, the downstairs bar includes an elegant wood and iron design while the smaller upstairs space is decorated in mirrors. The downstairs entertainment is geared towards the deeper house and techno sounds, while upstairs guests can enjoy a mix of indie pop, 80s music, and other sounds from around the world. Reminiscent of underground clubs in Berlin, Moog provides an electrifying experience to its hip crowd each night.

Operation hours: Monday – Sunday: midnight – 5 am
5
Bar Pastis

5) Bar Pastis

Bar Pastís is one of the most famous and most visited bars of Barcelona. The French music and the bohemian vibe will make you feel as you are in a Parisian cafe in the '50. Here you can taste the delicious Pastis liquor, an authentic French drink. The bar also organizes live music performances or tango and flamenco dances. Hours of operation: Monday-Thursday, Sunday 7:30pm-2:30am, Friday and Saturday 7:30pm-3:30am.
6
Sala Apolo

6) Sala Apolo

Sala Apolo consists of two distinct venues: Apolo 1 is the larger space an old cinema theme to its design, including high ceilings, a big stage, and plenty of red velvet curtains. The smaller Apolo 2 has a more contemporary theme to its decor, with less lighting and a moodier vibe to it. Each room features distinct musical styles each night, to offer some variety to its guests. Genres are often meant to blend well together to encourage guests to explore both aspects of the nightclub’s nightly offerings. Entertainment includes a variety from rock to dub step, hip hop, techno, and more. Notable guest appearances at Sala Apolo include A-Trak, Skream, and Drums of Death.

Operation hours: Saturday – Sunday: midnight – 6 am

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Travel Distance: 4.4 km
Montjuic Walking Tour

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Tips for Exploring City on Foot at Your Own Pace

Whether you are in Barcelona for a quick stopover or have a few days to see the city in more detail, exploring it on foot, at your own pace, is definitely the way to go. Here are some tips for you to save money, see the best Barcelona has to offer, take good care of your feet while walking, and keep your mobile device – your ultimate "work horse" on this trip - well fed and safe.

Saving Money with City Passes


To save yourself time and money getting around Barcelona and visiting the city's multiple sights, you may want to resort to the so-called city passes, such as iVenture Card, Hola Barcelona: Transport Pass, Barcelona Pass, and Barcelona Museum Pass.

These city passes combine all or multiple Barcelona's top highlights, tours and experiences in one prepaid attractions pass, using which you can save incredible amounts on general admission fees as compared to purchasing tickets separately. Often, a city pass also allows you to skip the lines at major attractions, thus saving you precious time.

Staying at Walk-Friendly Hotels


Since you're keen on exploring cities on foot (we assume that you are, and this is why you're here), it is important that you stay at a hotel close to the city's major attractions. It saves you time and energy. Here are a few of Barcelona hotels that are conveniently located: Iberostar Paseo de Gracia 4* Sup, Catalonia Plaza Cataluña Hotel, Olivia Plaza Hotel.

Taking Care of Your Feet


To ensure ultimate satisfaction from a day of walking around the city as big as Barcelona, it is imperative to take good care of your feet so as to avoid unpleasant things like blisters, cold or overheated soles, itchy, irritated or otherwise damaged (cracked) skin, etc. Luckily, these days there is no shortage of remedies to address (and, ideally, to prevent) these and other potential problems with feet. Among them: Compression Socks, Rechargeable Battery-Powered Thermo Socks for Cold Weather, Foot Repair Cream, Deodorant Powder, Shoes UV Sterilizer, and many more that you may wish to find a place in your travel kit for.

Travel Gadgets for Your Mobile Device


Your mobile phone or tablet will be your work horse on a self-guided walk. They offer tour map, guide you from one attraction to another, and provide informative background for the sights you wish to visit. Therefore it is absolutely essential to plan against unexpected power outages in the wrong place at the wrong time, much as to ensure the safety of your device.

For these and other contingencies, here's the list of useful appliances: Portable Charger/External Battery Pack, Worldwide Travel Charger Adapter, Power Converter for International Travel Adapter, and Mobile Device Leash.

Exploring City on Guided Tours


We have a strong bias towards exploring a city on foot, at your own pace, because this is how you get to see things up close with a maximum freedom. You decide how much time you wish to spend at each attraction and don't have to worry about following a crowd. That said, however, we also understand that some of you may want to go with a guided tour. If that is your case, here are some guided tours to consider. Be ready to fork out a bit of money, as a guided tour of Barcelona typically costs between around US$15 and over US$80 per person:

- Hop on a “hop-on hop-off” double-decker and enjoy sightseeing of Barcelona from the open top of the bus, listening in the headsets to the commentary provided in a variety of languages, and be able get off at any of the stops along the two interconnecting routes (your ticket is valid for both).

- Embark on a self-balancing Segway tour – this usually lasts around 2 hours and allows you to get a real sense of the city. Most people (even those aged 70+) find it quite fun and convenient, enabling to cover much more ground than you otherwise would have done by walking.

- Pedal your way around Barcelona on a 3-hour bike tour visiting the city's most spectacular sights, stopping at each (for 5-20 minutes) to get rest, watch the surroundings, and learn much about the city from an informative group leader.

- If you're an arts and architecture buff, with a keen interest in Catalan modernism of the late 19th century, then you may definitely enjoy a 2-hour guided stroll around the Quadrat d'Or (Golden Square) in Barcelona's Eixample borough to explore in-depth the works (buildings) of the celebrated pioneers of modernism: Domenech i Montaner, Puig i Cadafalch and, of course, Barcelona's most acclaimed architect Antoni Gaudí. As an extra bonus on this tour, you will get a 20% discount on a guided tour of the Palau de la Música Catalana (Music Palace), discounted entrance at Casa Batlló, free admission to the Museu del Modernisme Català (Catalan Modernism Museum), plus savings on admission to Casa Batlló. Great value and tons of information for the money spent!

- If you don't find tales of the supernatural terrifying, and if the gruesome details of witchcraft, exorcisms and paranormal activity, told after sunset, make your hair stand but only with curiosity, then why not treat yourself to a 2-hour “ghost” walk to discover sinister secrets of Barcelona, visiting some of the city's haunted places, entertained along the way by an informative commentary from an expert guide.

- Have the taste of Catalonia’s gourmet culture on this 3- to 4-hour tour of Barcelona's tapas crawling some of the city’s most prominent bars and cafes in La Rambla, La Boqueria food market, and the Gothic Quarter led by an expert food guide. Apart from savoring a variety of traditional Catalonian cured meats, cheeses and breads, as well as drinks, you will also learn how to order these iconic bar snacks in style, like a true local!

Day Trips


If you have a day to spare whilst in Barcelona, why not use it to explore some of the out-of-town destinations, like Costa Brava, Pyrenees mountain range, or Tarragona and Sitges. For as little as US$90+ to US$190+ you will get a chance to observe the picturesque villages and dramatic cliffs of the nearby Mediterranean coast, get high up in the Pyrenees Mountains visiting the historic town of Vic in the north of the country with optional hiking, horseback riding or boating excursions, or discover historical highlights of the Roman city of Tarragona complete with a seaside leisure at Sitges. All these trips start and end at your hotel and you'll be carried by a comfortable air-conditioned coach or minivan, accompanied by an English-speaking tour guide.