'Les Festes de Santa Eulàlia' is Barcelona’s biggest annual festival for children and takes place in February. The festival of Santa Eulàlia is also known as 'La Laia' festival.
This year's festivities will not have 'correfocs', parades or other traditional events with a large influx of people. Only five popular culture exhibitions will be held at the Born Center de Cultura i Memòria, the Pati Maning and the Town Hall. The pandemic has forced everything to be canceled, including the Llum BCN festival, which will be held in autumn.
What does remain, is the Open Days for Santa Eulalia, in which museums, art centers, gardens and other institutional buildings open their doors for free.
Museums will have limited capacity and most require reserving your entry ticket in advance. Please visit their websites for the museums to check their open day timetables and entry requirements.
Open days at Museums for Santa Eulalia
From February 9th to 14th, the MNAC offers free admission for all Laies and one companion. You just have to present your identification document at the museum ticket office. In addition, on Friday, February 12, the day of Santa Eulàlia, there will be an open day throughout the museum, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
The National Palace, emblematic building of the 1929 International Exhibition, is the headquarters of the National Art Museum of Catalonia, which contains all kinds of art: sculpture, painting, drawings, engravings, posters, photography and more. Their mission is to showcase the magnitude of Catalan art from the Romanesque to the mid-20th century. Also on display is part of the Thyssen-Bornemisza collection, which was in the Convent de Pedralbes, and the legacy of Francesc Cambó.
At CaixaForum they celebrate with open doors to the exhibitions 'So lazy' and 'Art and myth' on February 13 from 10 am to 8 pm. In addition, on the 12th at 7:00 p.m. (6 euros), in Room C they have programmed the documentary 'Jaar, the lament of images', where you will see the creative process of the artist Alfredo Jaar and his work on display by half the world. The renowned electronic musician and son of the artist, Nicolas Jaar, signs the soundtrack of the film. For the children, on the 13th there is a session of Little Cinephiles with the pass of 'La malvada guineu ferotge' (11.30 am, 5 euros).
CaixaForum is an old textile factory designed by Puig i Cadafalch and is one of the masterpieces of Modernism. Much of the last century it was used as police barracks and was subsequently abandoned. The Fundació La Caixa bought it and rebuilt it keeping the original brick structure and the lower part was excavated to create a very modern entrance, the work of Arata Isozaki, a mural by Sol Lewitt, an auditorium, a bookstore and a library. In addition to the permanent collections of contemporary art, there are three spaces for temporary exhibitions.
The CCCB also celebrates Santa Eulàlia with two days of open doors, on February 12 and 13, during the usual hours of the culture center. Get your ticket in advance!
The CCCB cultural center opened in 1994 in the Casa de la Caritat, a former hospice built in 1802 in what was once a medieval monastery. The façade and part of the patio of the original building are preserved, the rest was rebuilt with glass and steel by the architects Piñon and Viaplana, known for also designing the Maremagnum shopping center. The CCCB organizes and produces exhibitions, debates, festivals, concerts, program film cycles, courses and conferences, and encourages creation based on new technologies and language.
The old Born market is one of the spaces that will host the few activities of the Santa Eulàlia festivities that remain. This is the case of the exhibitions that include the children's bestiary of Barcelona, that of the historical festive bestiary that will also commemorate the 700th anniversary of Corpus Christi in the city, and the photographic exhibition that will revolve around flower carpets. In addition, on the 12th there will be an open house.
The old Born market reopend as a cultural center. Inside the iron and glass structure built by Josep Fontserè in 1876 - it was the first market in the city created according to the fashion of Paris architecture - the archaeological remains of the Vilanova de Mar neighborhood from 1700 are preserved. visitor will be able to circulate freely on the balcony; In addition, with the ticket you can visit the exhibition 'De les pedres a les persones' and the archaeological sites (only with prior reservation). These are the main attractions of this center that wants to make known the life of the city before and after 1714.
The Design Museum will open its doors for free on February 12 and 13 and prior reservation is required. Take the opportunity to see the permanent exhibitions dedicated to decorative arts, product design, fashion and a reinterpretation of Modernism.
Installed in the DHUB building, popularly known as 'the Stapler', the Design Museum houses around 70,000 objects - such as tableware, ceramics, corsets, chairs, mailboxes and advertising posters - that explain the evolution of decorative arts in design and contemporary arts.
The Museu d'Art Contemporani de Barcelona will have an open day on the 12th from 11 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.
MACBA occupies the impressive building of the American architect Richard Meier in the Plaza dels Àngels, in the Raval. It wants to transmit contemporary art, offer a multiplicity of visions and generate critical debates about art and culture.
The Frederic Marès museum opens its doors on February 12 and 13 from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. for free.
The sculptor Frederic Marès collected everything that fell into his hands, from brushes to glasses and gargoyles. In 1944 he donated his collections to the city and two years later this museum was inaugurated located in a part of the old Royal Palace of the Counts of Barcelona, of which the patio is preserved. The collection is made up of tens of thousands of objects - some very curious, such as fans, pipes, watches, jewelery and photographs - that document ways of life and customs from the past, especially from the 19th century.
In Santa Eulàlia, the Arús Library will hold an open house on February 12, from 10 am to 2.30 pm. You can visit the rooms of the Library and the exhibition 'Moriarty vs Sherlock Holmes'. Prior reservation is recommended by sending an email to email@example.com. The exhibition shows the books of stories where the character of Moriarty appears and highlights how Holmes describes the doctor in his own words. The possible biography of him and the recurring sources of inspiration that Conan Doyle is believed to have tested to build the character are revealed. On Saturday, February 13, there will be guided tours of the Sherlock Holmes Library and Joan Proubasta Collection at 11 a.m., 12 p.m. and 1 p.m. You can buy tickets at half price on the Cases Singulars website.
The Catalan Liberty, the work of Manuel Fuxà, proclaims in an inscription the freedom of the soul ('Anima libertas'). The collection of this library, specialized in labor movements and freemasonry, agrees with the motto. The secular icon illuminates this temple dedicated to knowledge as a form of collective progress.
On Saturday the 13th, admission to ComoCaixa and the exhibitions will be free.
CosmoCaixa is the result of the remodeling of the old Museu de la Ciència de Barcelona. It was inaugurated in 2004 and occupies the place of a former asylum for the blind, the work of Josep Domènech i Estapà. The museum is divided into different spaces that bring science closer to all audiences, in a close, educational and playful way. Stroll through the Mur Geò Mur Geològic, the Bosc Inundat, the Planetari, the Plaça de la Ciència, Clik, the Creactivity, the Planetari Bombolla and the Univers Room, the new permanent exhibition of the center, with 3,500 square meters to tell about the Big Bang and the origin of life at the last frontiers of knowledge.
The Fundació Joan Miró will offer open days for Santa Eulàlia on Friday, February 12, from 11am to 6pm. For reasons of capacity, it is advisable to make a prior reservation for the ticket on the museum's website.
The Fundació has the most complete public collection of Joan Miró's work, made up of paintings, sculptures, ceramics, textiles, prints and drawings by the artist from all periods. Josep Lluís Sert, architect co-founder of the GATCPAC (Grup d'Arquitectes i Tècnics Catalans per al Progrés de l'Arquitectura Contemporània) and a great friend of Joan Miró, designed this great museum in the Montjuïc park. Accessible, bright and airy, the white walls and arches house a collection of more than 104,000 pieces, including paintings, sculptures and tapestries, as well as almost all of Miró's drawings, some 8,000 references.
In addition to the first Sunday of the month, in Santa Eulàlia you can also visit the Mies Van der Rohe Pavilion for free. On these special dates - such as La Mercè or the Night of the Museums - they open the upper access and invite you to walk through the Pavilion in the way it was intended in 1929 and not only be there, but cross it. You have free entry on the 12th during the usual hours - from 10 to 18 hours - and no prior reservation is required.
Mies van der Rohe built the German Pavilion for the 1929 Exhibition, not as a gallery, but as a reception space with his personal brand, the ‘Barcelona Chair’, all in close collaboration with designer Lilly Reich. The pavilion became a flagship of modern rationalist architecture, especially for the revolutionary use of materials. Despite the original pavilion being demolished after the exhibition, an identical copy was built on the same site in 1986. The simplicity of its design highlights the marble and expressiveness of George Kolbe's sculpture.
The Barcelona headquarters of the Museum of Archeology, on the Paseo de Santa Madrona, will celebrate Santa Eulàlia with an open day on the 12th. They will extend the exhibition 'Art primer. Artistes de la Prehistòria ', so visit it before it leaves the museum!
The Barcelona headquarters is on the Paseo de Santa Madrona, in the old Palace of Graphic Arts, and permanently displays archaeological remains that illustrate the evolution of Catalonia and its environment during prehistory and ancient history. It exhibits Greek, Phoenician, Roman and Visigothic relics, up to the Middle Ages. It also offers a vision of various cultures from the rest of the Iberian peninsula and the Mediterranean.
This year at the Fundació Suñol they will hold open doors both on Friday, February 12 (from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and from 4 to 7 p.m.) and on Saturday 12 (from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.). The capacity control will be carried out without prior registration, at the Fundació itself. You will be able to see the exhibition 'Tot el que es sòlid s'esvaneix' and the intervention in the library, 'Una poètica de l'ús: fer serve la library', by Antònia del Río.
The Fundació Suñol, a private entity, has a collection of 1,300 works of contemporary art collected by Josep Suñol, as well as an important bibliographic collection that gains prominence in the 'new' premises that for years functioned as a warehouse and artistic residence for the foundation. A public program of activities takes place in parallel to the exhibitions.
On Friday 12, Saturday 13 and Sunday 14 of February, from 10 am to 7 pm, you can visit the exhibitions '7 vaixells, 7 històries'; 'Drassanes i Galeres'; 'Sorres X'; 'Catalunya mar enllà'; 'Mestres d'aixa de butxaca' and 'Vendée Globe, Sailing Regatta in solitari al voltant del món'. At the Moll de la Fusta, well decorated for the occasion, the Santa Eulàlia boat awaits you, the museum's historic ship, which you can visit from 10 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. and from 2:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. No prior reservation is necessary for either activity.
With more than 75 years of history, The Maritime Museum's task is to preserve, study and disseminate one of the most important collections of maritime heritage in the Mediterranean. The arches and vaults of the old drassanes (shipyards) represent one of the best-preserved examples of civil Gothic architecture in Spain. They were declared a Historic-Artistic Monument in 1976.
February 9 to 14, the Museu de la Música offers free admission to all Laias, Eulalias, Lalis, Olayas or Eulàries, and a companion. You will only have to present an identification document at the museum ticket office. Likewise, there will be an open house on the 12th, from 10 am to 6 pm, and on Saturday the 13th, from 10 am to 7 pm. You can also visit the temporary exhibition '100 Anys de l'Orquestra Pau Casals for free. Excel·lència musical i compromís social '.
In 2007 the Museum of Music reopened to the public at L’Auditori. The new permanent exhibition has about 500 instruments from different eras and cultures and is considered one of the most important in Spain. The main tour, Orpheus, begins in the ancient civilizations and covers the birth and spread of polyphony, baroque, classicism and Romanticism, new colors and the sound industry to the 19th century as well as new styles and new technologies of the twentieth century. Noteworthy are the keyboard instruments and the guitar collection as well as the Sala de los Musicos Catalanes.
The Museu Picasso de Barcelona is the reference center for the knowledge of the formative years of Pablo Ruiz Picasso. In Santa Eulàlia there will be open days on February 12 and 13 from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tickets will be available on the museum's website four days before each day.
Opened to the public in 1963, the Picasso Museum houses a collection of more than 3,800 works that make up the permanent collection and offers an extensive program of temporary exhibitions. The museum was created by the artist and his friend and secretary Jaume Sabartés, who donated his collection. There is a room dedicated to Picasso's portraits of him - the best known is that of the Blue Period - and Sabartés's scribbles. The best part is the complete series of 58 canvases based on Velázquez's Las Meninas, donated by Picasso himself after Sabartés' death. The exhibition ends with linoleographs, engravings, and a wonderful collection of ceramics donated by Picasso's widow. It is located in five Gothic palaces that represent one of the best examples of civil architecture from medieval times.
The MUHBA headquarters in Plaça del Rei will open doors for free on February 12 and 13, from 10 am to 2 pm and from 3 pm to 7 pm; and Sunday 14, from 10 am to 2 pm and from 3 pm to 8 pm.
From the Plaza del Rei to the cathedral there are about 4,000 m2 of underground Roman excavations: streets, villas and oil and wine warehouses, which were discovered by chance in the late 1920s, when part of the Barri Gòtic was built to build the Via Laietana. This underground labyrinth can be accessed through Casa Padellàs, a merchants' palace from 1498, which was moved stone by stone to the Plaza del Rei. It includes the centers of Plaza del Rei, Pedralbes Monastery, Vil·la Joana, Park Güell, Santa Caterina and El Call.
Vil·la Joana is the 19th century farmhouse located in the Collserola mountain range and recognized because that was where Jacint Verdaguer died in 1902. On the occasion of the Santa Eulàlia festivities you can visit it for free on February 12 (from 10 to 14 hours) and on February 13 and 14, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
To find out how the Jewish community lived in Barcelona, stop by the MUHBA El Call, which opens for free on Saturday the 13th and Sunday the 14th from 11am to 7pm.
The mission of the Interpretation Center of the Jewish Quarter is to trace the historical trajectory of an urban fabric from its formation in Roman times to the urban interventions of the 19th and 20th centuries, an urban fabric that during the Middle Ages was the aljama of Barcelona.
In the context of the Civil War, Barcelona once again suffered indiscriminate bombardments on the civilian population. The salvation were the hundreds of shelters built under the city, among which Refugi 307 stands out, converted into a memorial of the struggle for survival and the disaster of wars. You can enter for free on the 13th and 14th from 10.30 to 13.30. It is essential to pre-book your ticket through the museum's website.
Go to Turó de la Rovira to enjoy the views and learn about the history of this special place. It opens doors for Santa Eulàlia on Saturday the 13th and Sunday the 14th, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
The Casa del Agua de Trinitat Vella was the water lifting station of the municipal supply system of Barcelona and during your visit it hides very special corners. Go for free on Saturday February 13 from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
The newest MUHBA headquarters is also open to the public to celebrate Santa Eulàlia. It will do it on Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.