Not only is La Rambla one of the most well-known streets in the world, known for its eclectic street performers, wide array of shops, souvenir vendors and overall lively and unique atmosphere, it’s also one of the best places in Barcelona to enjoy the eccentric nightlife.
Since the walkway stretches from the Mediterranean Sea until Plaza Catalunya, La Rambla is lined with clubs, bars and a host of mainstream as well as authentic places to experience an incredible evening. On one side you have the notorious Gotico, known for its late night discos, never-ending excitement and plethora of live music venues, electronic clubs as well as Plaza Reial and Plaza ‘Trippy’ (George Orwell Plaza). And just a stone’s throw away, on the other side of the Ramblas is the Raval neighborhood. This up and coming area is ideal for those looking for something slightly lesser ‘known’. A great place for hipsters and people wanting to explore a rustic and cool area of town, the Raval is lined with bars, cocktail venues, small discos and out of the way clubs; many of which are hard to find if you’re not with a local or don’t know what to look for.
So no matter which end of La Rambla you find yourself on, it’s not hard to stumble across the perfect place to spend the evening.
This is a definite local hot spot or a place to frequent for those ‘in the know’. One of Barcelona’s best live music venues, El Paraigua is a swanky, cocktail and live music bar/lounge, located in the heart of the Gothic Quarter. Just around the corner from Plaza Sant Jaume, the top floor is a local restaurant, but if you head downstairs, you’ll be privy to a world of live jazz, blues and delicious drinks. Always buzzing, El Paraigua is usually busiest on weekends, however it’s open every day. Their restaurant also has a great outdoor patio which is excellent especially during the summer.
Recommended for La Rambla’s Best Nightlife because: Undiscovered Live Music Venu in the Gothic Quarter with tasty cocktails
Sam’s expert tip: Get there early on Fridays and Saturdays if you want a seat on the couch
A relaxed and stylie, primarily girl cocktail bar and pub, amBar is still equally welcoming to gays and straights. They have comfy couches, low-key music and a free pool table, providing for an inviting atmosphere and a nice way to kick off the evening in the heart of the Eixample neighborhood. Their happy hour deals vary daily, with a vast selection of innovative drinks including vodka mixes, martini specials as well as cheap beer. This is an excellent place to start the evening with a few affordable beverages before continuing the evening with dinner and dancing at one of the trendy bars/clubs right around the corner.
Recommended for La Rambla’s Best Nightlife because: Delicious cocktails in the Raval right off la Rambla, this is a fun venue for girls night
Sam’s expert tip: Be sure to try their signature cocktails (on the menu)
Live music in one of the Gothic Quarter’s most rustic bars, Harlem Jazz Club is one of the most well known and renowned Barcelona hang outs. Always ripe with a killer weekly line up of funk, blues, Brazilian music, Cuban pop/rock and jazz and all featuring incredible up and coming musicians, this is an excellent place to get a taste of the ‘real’ music scene in the city. Depending on the night, you’ll either be able to see a live show or witness stellar djs, but no matter which night you decide to go it’s always a lively and electric atmosphere.
Recommended for La Rambla’s Best Nightlife because: Harlem Jazz Club features excellent live Jazz in an unpretentious atmosphere
Sam’s expert tip: For more well known bands be sure to get tickets in advance via the website
Indie rock with the occasional live music gig, Sidecar is sheer late night fun. You can’t get more central than Plaza Reial and this hip, unpretentious two-storey space (restaurant and bar upstairs, club downstairs) is a great way to dance until the sun comes up. Located right off La Rambla, in Plaza Reial, Sidecar is surrounded by plenty of other clubs which makes the bar hopping experience that much more enjoyable. If you don’t like the line up at Sidecar, head to Jamboree or Marula Cafe and try your luck there. But it’s hard not to enjoy an amazing night at Sidecar.
Recommended for La Rambla’s Best Nightlife because: Sidecar is the best place for Indie Rock and is right off La Rambla
Sam’s expert tip: Show up before 2am if you want to avoid a line.
With its hanging disco ball, plush leather seats and wooden tables, many Ginger fans have coined this trendy wine and cocktail bar as an ‘airport lounge’. It is however, rather known for it’s innovative cocktails, wide selection of amazing wine and high quality tapas. This is a Barcelona gem, ideal for weekend adventures, intimate drinks and lively evenings on the town. Ginger is nestled behind Plaza Sant Jaume, in Plaza San Jus a little hard to find if you don’t know where to look, but once you stumble upon it you’ll be sure to mark the spot and keep on coming back for more.
Recommended for La Rambla’s Best Nightlife because: Ginger is an excellent Cocktail and wine bar and not a far stroll from La Rambla
Sam’s expert tip: Try their Gordito Red Wine.
Trendy New York style nightclub in the heart of Ciutat Vella (Old Vella), Factory Barcelona Club caters to those who don’t mind shelling out a bit of cash to jam with Barcelona’s finest. About three steps off La Rambla, you can’t miss this late night club as there’s always a line up until the wee hours of the night. Be sure to get there early and/or put your name on the guest list so you can enjoy your time in the club, as opposed to waiting on the street. Factory is a lively, club with an electric vibe, tasty drinks and good looking people.
Recommended for La Rambla’s Best Nightlife because: Factory is one of the Rambla’s ‘nicer’ clubs to spend an evening
Sam’s expert tip: Put your name on the VIP list via Facebook or their website to avoid the lines and paying higher prices at the door.
Relatively new to the Barcelona Club scene, Marula is a vibrant space, ideal for hosting concerts, live music and parties. It specializes in funk, but features rock, pop, jazz and other genres as well. Centrally located in the Gothic Quarter, right off of Plaza Tripi and La Rambla, this is a great late night party especially on weekends. Marula is also next to a host of late night cafes including some of the city’s best pizza places. And if you happen to party until the sun comes up, Milk restaurant is right around the corner and serves a delicious breakfast.
Recommended for La Rambla’s Best Nightlife because: Marula is the place to be if you’re into funk music as well as hip hop
Sam’s expert tip: There’s an excellent pasta place for late night food right next door to the club
A Barcelona staple, Macarena Club has been around for years and to locals and tourists alike it is a late night gem. But be sure to arrive early (by 1:30am) as the club is tiny and once it reaches capacity, the doors shut. If you’re looking for a mix of house and electronic beats this is the place to go. Centrally located in the Gothic Quarter, it’s easy to find and easier to stumble home from, especially if you’re staying downtown. Macarena features well known DJ’s, local as well as international, so be sure to check the line up get tickets in advance.
Recommended for La Rambla’s Best Nightlife because: Macarena is a Barcelona local’s watering hole and perfect for an authentic night out
Sam’s expert tip: Great place for a private party
This chic nightclub serves a varying choice of music, including hip-hop, jazz and Latin beats. The venue is split level with a dance club downstairs and live Spanish music upstairs. Most nights the place (downstairs) kicks off with live music and then later transforms into trendy and lively club. If you’re looking to dance until the sun comes up, then Jamboree is a great choice. Situated in Plaza Reial in the heart of the Gothic Quarter, right off La Rambla, it’s surrounded by plenty of other bars and clubs, all with a variety of music. Most places don’t charge admission and if they do it includes a drink.
Recommended for La Rambla’s Best Nightlife because: Jamboree has a great mix of live music as well as 80’s hits
Sam’s expert tip: Arrive before the dj and mixed drinks are half price (selected evenings check website)
Boulevard, or BLVD as it’s known to the locals, is one the most central La Rambla club. Located smack in the middle of the street, closer to the sea, this is a huge venue with the capacity to hold about 1000 people, spread out over three dance floors. With a mix of oldies, techno, dubstep, pop and 80’s classics, BLVD is the ideal place to party on La Rambla. Although it’s in the tourist heartland, you’ll still see a strong local representation at Boulevard including Catalans and expats. After the club closes (6-7am) you can head to the beach and watch the sun rise on the boardwalk.
Recommended for La Rambla’s Best Nightlife because: Boulevard is THE club on La Rambla that can’t be overlooked
Sam’s expert tip: Get a flyer handed out on the street, for drink and entrance discounts