Sunbathers who want to relax on Barcelona’s beaches and top up their tan can find out below where the best spots in the city are.
Barcelona offers a vast stretch of coastline that comes as a surprise to some first-time visitors. From Barceloneta to Nova Icària and Bogatell, the beaches here run virtually uninterrupted.
For restaurants and bars, head to the Port Vell Marina in Barceloneta or to Port Olimpic where you can take the steps down by the bronze fish statue for beach front dining or further along past the towers to the Marina area for a range of seafood and other restaurants.
An additional perk of the city beaches is the lending service provided by the Centre de la Platja at the beachfront opposite Hospital del Mar (3 April – 30 September). The center offers kite-flying courses and boat trips, lends out buckets and spades, games and other beach equipment that you may have left at home.
You can typically enjoy the Barcelona beaches from March to October and you may even see sunbathers there as late as November.
Sant Sebastià Beach
This is one of the city’s oldest beaches and traditionally a place where the more mature sun worshipper flocks to. The long sandy beach also has an area for people with reduced mobility as well as an unofficial nudist beach.
Buses: 14, 16, 17, 39, 40, 45, 51, 57, 59, 64 and 157.
Metro: Barceloneta, line 4.
As well as Sant Sebastià, La Barceloneta Beach is also one of the original beaches in Barcelona. It can get very busy during the summer months, however. You can enjoy a cocktail at sunset at one of the many beach bars and restaurants here.
Buses: 10, 14, 16, 17, 36, 39, 40, 45, 51, 57, 59 & 64
Metro: Barceloneta & Ciutadella, Line 4
Nova Icària Beach
Located a little further east, this relatively short beach offers a quieter alternative and is set in the middle of the Barcelona coastline. Popular among families and groups, there are also plenty of restaurants situated around the Port Olímpic marina.
Buses: 6, 10, 36, 41, 92 & 141
Metro: Ciutadella & Bogatell, L4
Whilst this beach was specifically created for the 1992 Barcelona Olympic Games, it remains a popular local hang-out. It offers a variety of beach sports and games whilst ensuring the food and drink options are plentiful close by Poblenou.
Buses: 39, 63, 67, 118
Metro: Bogatell, L4
Mar Bella Beach
The 500m long beach takes you even further to the east of the city’s coastline. A younger more beautiful crowd of bathers tend to congregate here. A nudist beach is partially hidden from view.
Buses: 26, H16, V27
Metro: Poblenou or Selva de Mar, L4
Nova Mar Bella Beach
This beach is one of the most northerly on the Barcelona coastline. It’s close to the city’s Diagonal Mar shopping center and the Barcelona Forum. It is possibly the quietest beach as it is located near the residential district of Diagonal Mar.
Buses: V27, H16
Metro: Selva de Mar or El Maresme, L4
This is the newest of the city’s beaches. Meaning east in Catalan, this is a relative newcomer with regards to facilities, but is still popular amongst locals and tourists alike.
Buses: 7, 36, 41 or 141
Metro: Selva de Mar, L4
Parc Forum Bathing Area
Parc Forum has a natural seawater swimming pool with the sea having been sectioned off to create a shallow bathing area. There is no sand here, so you can escape the mess but also enjoy the sunshine and water sports on offer.
Buses: 7, 143, H16
Metro: El Maresme Fòrum, L4