5 unusual things to do in Barcelona

Carmel Bunkers in Barcelona

Tired of walking down the Ramblas, the beaches and the Gaudí tours?

If you want to try something different during your trip to Barcelona and chill with the locals, or just want something to do because you have some free time during the week, here are five great activities to try.

La Rambla in Barcelona
La Rambla in Barcelona

Climbing at the Foixarda tunnel

La Foixarda is the largest free urban climbing wall in Europe, maybe in the world. It is not really a “center”, but a tunnel complemented with rock walls on both exits of it.

No matter what your level is, you will have routes for you. It is a great place for beginners, but also includes a handful of mad overhung routes that require extreme expertise and technique.

There are about 120 routes in total. Along the 65 meters of the tunnel walls, several bouldering routes at different levels can be found; with some crazy numbered routes for the toughest climbers.

But La Foixarda is not just about climbing. There is a whole community that exists there, which includes people who live there (in a parked van).

As usual among climbing communities, you might also find people slack-lining, rope-dancing, playing their guitars and having a beer or reading a book between climbs. This community is extremely helpful; there’s always someone ready to give you free advice if you are doing something wrong in your climbings.

Not having your climbing equipment or being a total newbie are no excuse. With the large crowds of climbers that gather there, chances are you will find someone willing to let you try a route using their material if you are nice enough.

Additionally, the bouldering routes can be practiced without climbing shoes (or barefoot). In any case, please be careful and do not climb vertical routes alone. Although the place starts to get crowded at 6pm, climbers can be found at any time of the day; with early birds that show up at 7am and all-nighters that go home at sunrise.

Access: Camí de la Foixarda, 08038, Barcelona (41.369450, 2.165042). By foot or bus from Placa Espanya (lines 13, 50 and 60 that stop at Poble Espanyol, or lines 50 and 61 that stop at Avinguda de l’Estadi, Jocs 92).

Opening hours: 24h every day (open-air)

Fuixarda free climbing area in Barcelona
Fuixarda free climbing area

Playing board games at Queimada / Nivell Q

Open every day till past midnight, Nivell Q offers hundreds of board games of all kinds.

The place offers delicious -albeit slightly overpriced- sandwiches. You can either choose your favorite board game, or ask for recommendations.

The place is owned by a lovely couple who will not only explain the rules to you (in Catalan/Spanish), but might also join your group if you are not enough to play the game. The place is that of a typical Spanish bar decorated with fantasy medieval imagery.

In crowded evenings, the atmosphere is really nice and cozy.

Access: 323 Independència, 08026 Barcelona (41.409442, 2.180952). Metro: Encants (L2) or Sant Pau Dos de Maig (L5).

Check their website for more details.

Bungee jumping at Sant Sadurní d’Anoia

Google this and you will find plenty of videos to see what the jump is like. It is a 25m fall from 40 meters.

Not too high, but quite affordable: 50€ includes two jumps, which is very cheap in this business. The booking website changes from time to time, but will show up first in the search results. The team in charge has been running this service for many years now.

Access: Bridge on BV-2244, 08770, Sant Sadurní d’Anoia, Barcelona (41.422184, 1.798573). Train: Renfe R4 train line, Sant Sadurní d’Anoia stop.

Chess club Tres Peons

Located in the district of Gràcia, Tres Peons is arguably the most authentic (and coolest) chess club in Barcelona, its foundation dating back to 1971 and has a very traditional feeling to it.

They hold weekly tournaments for members, yearly international tournaments, and several teaching programs for all ages or levels. Check their website and drop by to learn from the Masters!

Access: 9 Ros de Olano (2nd floor), 08012 Barcelona (41.401125, 2.154766). Metro: Fontana (L3).

Encants flea market

This one is probably the best-known item of the list. Recently relocated to a new three-story structure with mirror ceilings next to Agbar Tower, Encants flea market -meaning the “Charms”- is the biggest in the city.

Books, furniture, clothes and all sorts of other second-hand gadgets are for sale. With over 500 vendors, the place is abuzz from 8am to 8pm, and public auctions take place early in the morning on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

Neighbouring exhibition halls and squares typically hold temporary (hipster) art exhibitions, fashion festivals and handcrafts and food fairs.

Access: 158 Carrer de Castillejos, 08013 Barcelona (41.401155, 2.186062). Metro: Glòries (L1).

Check the official website for the opening hours.

Or… just walk around the Raval district?

The Raval (meaning “town outside of the wall”) is a diamond-shaped maze of cozy streets that come in all sizes and colors.

It is located south from La Rambla, opposite the Gótico neighborhood, and east from Gran Via; extending west towards the sea and south towards Montjuïc. It has a bustling nightlife, so some of your best stories are probably going to take place around there!!

Raval district in Barcelona

Raval district in Barcelona
Raval district

Do you know any other activities everyone should try in Barcelona?

Share the tips in the comments section below!

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