Ah, Barcelona! I live in Spain, so I’ve been lucky enough to have spent countless sun-drenched days in this vibrant city – and let me tell you, its beaches are some of the best.
But with so many to choose from, how do you find your perfect patch of sand? Well, that’s where I come in.
Consider this your guide to the best beaches of Barcelona, full of insider tips and personal insights from my time here. I’ll help you navigate everything from what to wear to the best beachside accommodation.
Together, we’ll uncover the must-visit spots where locals go to soak up the sun. So, grab your sunglasses and let’s hit the beach, Barcelona style!
Best beaches in Barcelona
If you haven’t yet dipped your toes into the warm, Mediterranean waters of Barceloneta Beach, what are you waiting for? It’s the classic Barcelona beach, often seen on postcards and in the background of your favorite travel bloggers’ Instagram selfies.
Situated smack dab in the city center, it’s the most popular beach in Barcelona and one of the city’s proudest jewels. The atmosphere here? A bustling delight of sun-soakers, volleyball players, live music, and the tantalizing scent of local food wafting from the seaside bars and restaurants.
The beachside bars – called chiringuitos – can get pretty touristy but, well, some things are touristy because they’re worth going to! I’d still suggest grabbing a slightly overpriced mojito and enjoying the vibe.
There are also some of the best beach clubs in Barcelona along this stretch, if you want to be at one of the places to be seen in the city. They’re a great place to spend a day, with a range of price points depending on your budget.
Getting here is as easy as a sea breeze. Just catch the yellow line L4 metro to Barceloneta station. From there, it’s just a short walk to the beach.
(You can also choose to enjoy the views of the beach from the water with one of these incredible sailing tours from Barcelona!)
When you’re ready to turn in, consider these cozy accommodations:
- W Barcelona: Known for its iconic sail-like structure, this hotel offers luxurious stays and incredible sea views.
- Hotel 54 Barceloneta: Chic, modern, and right in the heart of the district, this place is a favorite for its fantastic rooftop view.
- H10 Port Vell: Perched right on the marina, this hotel offers modern comfort with a great view of both the harbor and the beach.
Nova Icaria Beach
Next stop, Nova Icaria Beach! This beach is the place for families and groups of friends looking for a chill day under the Spanish sun.
It’s less crowded than Barceloneta, giving you more room to sprawl out and build the sandcastle of your dreams or even finish that book you’ve been carrying around.
Right by the Olympic Marina, the beach is well equipped with amenities, including restaurants, bars, showers, and volleyball courts. You could easily spend a whole day here without worrying about a thing.
To get to Nova Icaria Beach, take the yellow line L4 metro to Ciutadella Vila Olímpica station, then walk about 10 minutes to the beach.
When the day is done, you might like these nearby hotels:
- Pullman Barcelona Skipper: Located right by the beach, this hotel offers modern rooms with views of the sea or the city.
- Hotel Arts Barcelona: A luxurious, skyscraper hotel with stunning views, superb restaurants, and a fabulous spa.
- ibis Styles Barcelona City Bogatell: A budget-friendly option with comfortable rooms and only a short stroll from the beach.
Bogatell Beach is for those who love the beach but could do without the heavy crowds. It’s a serene spot, perfect for soaking up the sun or taking a peaceful walk along the water’s edge.
In fact, this beach is so laid back, it’s a favorite among locals, so you know it’s got to be good!
You’ll find Bogatell Beach between the beaches of Mar Bella and Nova Icaria. Getting here is easy. Just hop on the yellow line L4 metro to Poblenou or Llacuna station, and walk for about 15 minutes.
When it’s time to snooze, consider these hotels:
- Holiday Inn Express Barcelona City-22: A cost-effective option with cozy rooms, located just a few blocks away from the beach.
- Ilunion Barcelona: This hotel offers a great rooftop pool and modern rooms, just a short walk from Bogatell Beach.
- Travelodge Barcelona Poblenou: An affordable, straightforward option with a great location in the heart of Poblenou, just a short stroll from the beach.
Mar Bella Beach
Ready for something a bit different? Let’s head over to Mar Bella Beach!
This spot has a young, vibrant vibe, and it’s known for its watersports. Windsurfing, anyone? Plus, it’s got a designated naturist area if you’re keen on working on that all-over tan (but please wear sunscreen, the sun in Spain is strong)!
This beach is also easily accessible by the metro. Catch the yellow line L4 to Selva de Mar station and walk for about 15 minutes.
Here are some hotels to consider for your stay:
- Occidental Atenea Mar: Overlooking the sea, this adults only hotel is just a few steps away from Mar Bella Beach.
- Vincci Bit: A stylish, modern hotel with comfortable rooms and a rooftop pool. It’s located just a short walk from the beach.
- Hotel SB Diagonal Zero Barcelona: This hotel offers a relaxing spa and a rooftop bar, just a short stroll from the beach.
Sant Sebastià Beach
Ready to dive into another adventure? Sant Sebastià Beach, one of Barcelona’s oldest and most traditional beaches, is calling!
It’s just as lively as Barceloneta but with a more relaxed atmosphere, making it popular with both locals and tourists.
The beach is right next to the city’s most famous landmarks, the W Hotel and San Sebastian Tower, so you can’t miss it! To get here, take the green line L3 metro to Drassanes station, and then take Bus 59 straight to the beach.
Ready to snooze? Check out these hotels:
- Hotel Duquesa de Cardona: Overlooking the port, this hotel offers a perfect mix of classic and modern style.
- Mercer Hotel Barcelona: In the heart of the Gothic Quarter, this hotel is a stone’s throw from the beach.
- K+K Hotel Picasso El Born: Located in the trendy El Born district, this hotel offers easy beach access and a rooftop pool.
Just a short train ride from Barcelona, the town of Sitges is a beach lover’s paradise. With over 17 beaches, it’s hard to choose just one.
But don’t worry, you can’t go wrong. Each beach offers golden sand, clear water, and a welcoming atmosphere. Plus, Sitges is known for its lively nightlife and fantastic restaurants.
To get to Sitges from Barcelona, take the R2 train from Barcelona Sants, Passeig de Gràcia or Estació de França. It’s a beautiful journey that takes about 40 minutes.
Here are some lovely hotels in Sitges:
- Hotel Casa Vilella: This boutique hotel offers exquisite rooms and a great beachfront location.
- Hotel Calipolis: Situated right on the seafront promenade, this hotel offers stunning sea views.
- Dolce by Wyndham Sitges Barcelona: Located a bit outside the city center, this hotel offers luxury accommodations and beautiful views.
If you’re looking to escape the tourist hustle and bustle, Caldetes Beach is your haven. This charming beach town is about 36 kilometers north of Barcelona and is perfect for a tranquil day trip. The beach is clean, the water is clear, and the ambiance is peaceful.
Take the R1 train from Barcelona Sants, Passeig de Gràcia or Clot station towards Blanes or Maçanet-Massanes, and get off at Caldes d’Estrac.
Here are a few places to consider for your stay:
- Hotel Colón Thalasso: Just steps away from the beach, this hotel offers a delightful sea-view terrace.
- Hotel Jet: A straightforward option with clean rooms and a great location.
- Dynamic Hotels Caldetes Barcelona: Offering modern and comfortable accommodations, this hotel is just a short walk from the beach.
Have you heard of Castelldefels Beach? It’s the place to go if you’re a water sports enthusiast.
This beach is located to the south of Barcelona and offers a whopping 5 kilometers of golden sandy beach, providing ample space for sunbathing, kite surfing, and volleyball. The promenade along the beach is perfect for a seaside stroll or bike ride.
To get here, take the R2 train from Barcelona Sants, Passeig de Gràcia, or Estació de França to Castelldefels.
Rest easy at these nearby accommodations:
- Hotel Playafels: Right on the beachfront, this hotel offers spacious rooms and a sparkling pool.
- Hotel SB BCN Events: A stylish option with modern rooms, a pool, and easy beach access.
- Hotel Bel Air: A modern hotel offering sea-view rooms and an excellent location.
Next, let’s venture to Gava Beach, a tranquil, less crowded beach that’s perfect for families and those looking for a peaceful day of sun and sea. Its beautiful, wide, and clean sandy beach stretches for over 3.5 kilometers.
What’s more, the beach is lined with a gorgeous pine forest, offering an opportunity for a shady picnic.
Getting to Gava Beach is straightforward. Take the L95 bus from Plaça Catalunya, and it will drop you off right at the beach.
Check out these hotels for your stay:
- AC Hotel Gavà Mar: This hotel offers modern and luxurious accommodations with a great beachfront location.
- Camping 3 Estrellas: Ideal for a family vacation, this campsite also offers bungalows for rent, right next to the beach.
- Hotel 139: A budget-friendly option that’s a short bus ride away from the beach.
Montgat Beach is the first beach you’ll encounter north of Barcelona, and it’s worth a visit. Its wide, golden sands and crystal-clear waters make it an attractive option for those looking to escape the busier city beaches. It’s less crowded, offering a more relaxed atmosphere.
To get here, take the R1 train from Barcelona Sants, Passeig de Gràcia or Clot station towards Mataró or Maçanet-Massanes, and get off at Montgat.
Consider these hotels for your stay:
- Can Ballús: Set in a charming country house, this hotel offers an outdoor pool and a peaceful environment.
- Hotel Porta d’Alella: A delightful boutique hotel with modern rooms and a restaurant.
- Rafaelhoteles Badalona: A bit further away, but it offers comfortable rooms and easy access to the train station.
Let’s take a seaside detour to the gorgeous Garraf Beach! This small beach is nestled between lush green hills and traditional fishermen’s cottages.
It’s truly a picturesque scene straight from a postcard! Known for its tranquility and natural beauty, Garraf Beach is an ideal escape from the bustling city life.
To get to Garraf from Barcelona, take the R2S train from Barcelona Sants, Passeig de Gràcia or Estació de França. It’s about a 30-minute ride.
When it’s time to rest, consider these nearby accommodations:
- Hotel Garraf: Just steps away from the beach, this hotel is all about the location, location, location!
- Hotel Playa Sol: A modern seaside hotel offering comfortable rooms and an outdoor pool.
- Casa Mallarenga: Nestled in the Garraf National Park, this B&B offers stunning views, a swimming pool, and cozy rooms.
El Masnou Beach
Get ready to soak up the sun in El Masnou! Known for its wide beaches and deep blue waters, El Masnou is a fantastic choice for a day trip from Barcelona.
The marina is vibrant and full of delightful restaurants where you can enjoy fresh seafood while overlooking the sea.
To reach El Masnou Beach, take the R1 train from Barcelona Sants, Passeig de Gràcia or Clot station towards Mataró or Maçanet-Massanes, and get off at El Masnou.
Here are some great hotels in the area:
- Hotel Torino: A charming and comfortable beachfront hotel with a fantastic view.
- Can Mora B&B: A homely B&B offering comfortable rooms, a swimming pool, and a hearty breakfast.
- Grus Apartments: These modern and comfortable apartments offer the flexibility of self-catering.
The beautiful Ocata Beach is known for its wide expanse of golden sand and its tranquility, it’s a hidden gem that’s highly favored by locals.
The beach is immaculate, and the waters are shallow, making it perfect for families with young children or those looking for a quiet day by the sea.
To get to Ocata Beach from Barcelona, take the R1 train from Barcelona Sants, Passeig de Gràcia or Clot station towards Mataró or Maçanet-Massanes, and get off at Ocata.
When it’s time to rest, consider these nearby accommodations:
- Hotel Sorli Emocions: Located a bit further inland, this modern hotel offers comfortable rooms, a rooftop pool, and a wellness center.
- Masía Can Canal: A rustic country house turned B&B, offering peace and tranquility.
- Mariners Apartments: These beachfront apartments offer the convenience of self-catering accommodations.
Badalona, let’s go! Just a stone’s throw away from Barcelona, Badalona Beach offers an escape from the city’s hustle and bustle.
It’s a great alternative if you want a wide, clean, sandy beach with less of a crowd. Don’t forget to check out the iconic ‘Pònt del Petroli’ here, a decommissioned oil jetty that’s now a popular walkway and viewpoint.
To get to Badalona Beach, take the R1 train from Barcelona Sants, Passeig de Gràcia or Clot station towards Maçanet-Massanes, and get off at Badalona.
After soaking up the sun, consider these comfortable accommodations:
- Hotel Miramar Badalona: Located right on the beachfront, this hotel offers fantastic sea views.
- Hostal Solimar: A budget-friendly option with clean, basic rooms.
- Rafaelhoteles Badalona: A modern hotel offering comfortable rooms, just a short walk from the beach.
Another option for a great beach near Barcelona is the vibrant Mataró Beach! It’s the capital of the Maresme region and a great beach city that’s steeped in history.
Mataró Beach is spacious, well maintained, and less crowded, making it a perfect destination for sun-seekers who love some peace and quiet. Plus, there’s a fantastic promenade lined with cafes and restaurants.
To reach Mataró Beach, take the R1 train from Barcelona Sants, Passeig de Gràcia or Clot station towards Maçanet-Massanes, and get off at Mataró.
When it’s time to rest, check out these local hotels:
- New Hotel Colon: A comfortable, modern hotel located in the heart of Mataró.
- Ibis Barcelona Mataro: Offering modern and comfortable rooms, this hotel is a great value for money.
- URH Ciutat de Mataró: A hotel offering spacious rooms, a wellness spa, and is just a short stroll from the beach.
Vilanova i la Geltrú Beach
Somewhere else to set your sights is the beaches of Vilanova i la Geltrú! This town has a whopping seven beaches stretching over four kilometers, making it one of the largest beach areas in Catalonia.
The beaches here are wide, clean, and offer plenty of amenities. Plus, the town itself is charming, with plenty of shops, bars, and restaurants to explore.
To get here, take the R2 train from Barcelona Sants, Passeig de Gràcia or Estació de França to Vilanova i la Geltrú.
Here are some cozy hotels for your stay:
- Hotel Ceferino: Located on the seafront, this hotel offers great views and comfortable rooms.
- Atenea Park Suites & Apartments: Offering both rooms and apartments, this place is great for families or groups.
- Hotel Solvi: A comfortable beachfront hotel with a fantastic sea-view terrace.
The small seaside town of Cubelles boasts beautiful, quiet beaches that are perfect for a relaxing day in the sun. Lles Filipines beach, in particular, is a lovely wide beach with calm waters, making it a family favorite.
To reach Cubelles Beach, take the R2 train from Barcelona Sants, Passeig de Gràcia or Estació de França to Cubelles.
Ready to recharge? Consider these accommodations:
- Hotel Playa Gold: A modern hotel just a short walk from the beach with a swimming pool and garden.
- Hotel Masia Figueras: Offering cozy rooms and an outdoor pool, this hotel is perfect for those seeking tranquility.
- Camping La Rueda: This campsite offers bungalows and is just a stone’s throw away from the beach.
The charm of Cunit lies in its long, clean, and uncrowded beach. The shallow waters make it perfect for families with young children or those who enjoy a relaxed swim.
To get to Cunit Beach, take the R2 train from Barcelona Sants, Passeig de Gràcia or Estació de França to Cunit.
When it’s time to rest, check out these nearby hotels:
- Adia Cunit Playa Hotel: This seaside hotel offers comfortable rooms and a delightful outdoor pool.
- Camping Cunit Bella Terra: Offering the option of camping or renting a bungalow, this place is perfect for a family holiday.
- Pierre & Vacances Comarruga: These self-catering apartments are just a short walk from the beach.
Alright, beach explorers, let’s journey on to Tarragona! Not only is Tarragona home to beautiful beaches, but it’s also rich in Roman history.
After all, the main beach, Platja del Miracle, is situated right next to the Roman amphitheater! Imagine sunbathing with such an impressive backdrop.
Getting to Tarragona Beach is an easy day trip from Barcelona. Just take the R15 train from Barcelona Sants to Tarragona.
Here are some great places to stay:
- Astari Hotel: Offering modern rooms and an outdoor pool, this hotel is just a short walk from the beach.
- Hotel Tarraco Park: A bit further from the beach but offers comfortable rooms and a swimming pool.
- Hotel SB Ciutat de Tarragona: This hotel provides modern rooms, a rooftop pool, and easy access to the city’s attractions.
Platja de la Fragata
Last on our list, but certainly not least, we have Platja de la Fragata! Located in the town of Sitges, this beach is popular among both locals and tourists.
It’s situated at the foot of the beautiful Church of Sant Bartomeu and Santa Tecla and boasts fine golden sand and clear waters.
To get here, take the R2 train from Barcelona Sants, Passeig de Gràcia or Estació de França to Sitges.
And when it’s time to relax, consider these accommodations:
- Hotel MiM Sitges: A stylish hotel located just a short walk from the beach with a beautiful rooftop pool.
- Hotel Calipolis Sitges: Located right on the promenade, this hotel offers stunning sea views.
- Hotel Platjador: A charming hotel with comfortable rooms and a rooftop bar.
Does Barcelona have a good beach?
Absolutely! Barcelona doesn’t just have a good beach, but a spectacular array of them. In fact, Barcelona’s beaches are some of its most prized attractions. With their sparkling Mediterranean waters, golden sands, and an array of beachfront eateries and bars, Barcelona’s beaches offer the perfect mix of relaxation, sun-soaked fun, and Catalan culture.
From the bustling Barceloneta and Nova Icaria to the more tranquil Badalona and Montgat, Barcelona’s beaches have something for everyone. So, pack your sunnies and swimsuit and get ready to enjoy Barcelona’s beachy bliss!
What is the best beach in Barcelona?
If you want lively crowds, nearby amenities, and easy access from the city center, then Barceloneta Beach would be the top pick. But if you prefer a quieter spot with plenty of space for sunbathing, then Nova Icaria is a great choice.
But this really is the million-peseta question! The answer can be as varied as the grains of sand on the beach because the “best” beach will depend on what you’re looking for.
For the sporty folks, Bogatell Beach with its volleyball courts and ping pong tables might take the top spot, while Mar Bella Beach, with its nudist area and youthful vibe, might be the ‘best’ for the more adventurous among us.
All of Barcelona’s beaches have their unique charm, so the best one is waiting for you to discover it!
What’s the most popular beach in Barcelona?
When it comes to popularity, Barceloneta Beach steals the show! This beach is the go-to for many visitors thanks to its central location and lively atmosphere. Barceloneta Beach is packed with activities, from beach volleyball to windsurfing, and it’s lined with a variety of restaurants and bars.
Plus, the gorgeous views of the city’s skyline and the iconic W Barcelona Hotel are Instagram-worthy!
It can get crowded, especially in the summer months, but that’s part of its charm. It’s the perfect spot to soak up the sun, people-watch, and get a true taste of Barcelona’s vibrant beach culture.
But remember, there are many more beaches to explore in and around Barcelona, each with its own personality and charm!
Are Barcelona beaches swimmable?
Dive right in, the water’s fine! Indeed, Barcelona’s beaches are not just for sunbathing, but they’re great for swimming too. The Mediterranean Sea is typically calm, and the beaches in Barcelona gently slope into the water, making them safe for swimmers.
During the summer season, lifeguards are on duty at the most popular beaches, and swimming areas are clearly marked. Do keep in mind that the sea can get a bit choppy on windy days, so always pay attention to the flag system indicating swimming conditions.
What is the famous beach in Barcelona called?
While Barcelona boasts numerous lovely beaches, the most famous and recognizable is undoubtedly Barceloneta Beach. This bustling stretch of golden sand is synonymous with Barcelona’s beach scene and is often the first stop for visitors looking to enjoy the city’s seafront.
Its popularity stems from its convenient location (it’s the closest beach to the city center), its vibrant atmosphere, and its wealth of amenities including beach bars (chiringuitos), restaurants, and water sports centers.
Barceloneta Beach is also famous for its iconic sights, such as the whimsical sculpture ‘Peix’ (Fish) by Frank Gehry.
Is Barcelona beach water clear?
Like a shimmering Mediterranean gem, the water off Barcelona’s beaches is typically quite clear, especially considering that Barcelona is a major city. The clarity of the water can vary depending on the weather and sea conditions, but generally, it’s clean and inviting for a swim.
Remember, the city beaches can get quite busy, especially during the peak summer months, which may affect water clarity. If you’re in search of crystal clear waters, you might want to consider taking a short trip outside the city to more secluded beaches along the Costa Brava, where the water tends to be even clearer.
What are the best months to go to the beach in Barcelona?
Barcelona’s location on the northeastern coast of Spain means it enjoys a Mediterranean climate, which is perfect for beach-goers. The best months to hit the beach are typically from June to September when the weather is hot, and the sea is warm.
June and September are particularly good if you want to avoid the most intense heat and the biggest crowds. July and August, however, are the warmest months, with temperatures often climbing above 30°C (86°F).
So remember to pack your sunscreen!
How far is the beach from the city in Barcelona?
Barcelona’s main beaches are actually right in the city itself. The closest and most famous one, Barceloneta Beach, is just a 20-minute walk from the city center. However, Barcelona’s coastline stretches for several kilometers, and the city’s excellent public transportation system makes it easy to reach even the furthest city beaches quickly.
Plus, for a bit of an adventure, there are many fantastic beaches just a short train ride away in nearby towns like Sitges and Castelldefels.
Can you drink alcohol on Barcelona beaches?
In Barcelona, it’s actually illegal to drink alcohol in public places, including beaches, and you could be fined if you’re caught. This rule is part of the city’s efforts to promote a respectful and family-friendly atmosphere.
I know, I know – a cheeky beachside cerveza sounds tempting, right? But don’t worry! There are plenty of beachside bars and restaurants, known as ‘chiringuitos’, where you can legally enjoy a drink with your toes in the sand.
So, while you might have to pass on the beach picnic with a bottle of Catalan cava, you’re never far from a refreshing beverage in Barcelona’s beachside locales.
What do you wear to the beach in Barcelona?
When packing your beach bag for a day on the sands of Barcelona, remember that this city is both stylish and laid-back. Swimsuits are the norm for sunbathing and swimming, of course. When it comes to swimwear, anything from bikinis and trunks to one-pieces are perfectly fine – wear what you feel comfortable in.
However, it’s also important to cover up when you’re not actually on the beach. If you’re strolling along the promenade, popping into a beachside bar or restaurant, or using public transportation, be sure to slip on a cover-up, a shirt, or some shorts.
Flip-flops are common beach footwear, but don’t forget to pack some comfortable shoes if you plan to explore the city afterward.
What are the best beaches near Barcelona by train?
Barcelona is a great starting point for discovering some of the stunning beaches on the Catalan coast. And the best part? Many of them are easily accessible by train!
Here are a couple of my top picks:
- Sitges Beaches: A quick, 30-minute train ride from Barcelona will get you to the charming seaside town of Sitges, which boasts 17 gorgeous beaches.
- Caldetes Beach: This is a less crowded option, with a wide sandy beach and clear waters. It’s around an hour by train from Barcelona.
- Castelldefels Beach: Just a 25-minute train ride from the city, Castelldefels offers a large, sandy beach that’s a favorite with locals.
- Tarragona Beaches: About an hour from Barcelona by train, Tarragona is known for its beautiful, clean beaches and Roman ruins.