Best Beaches In & Near Barcelona

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Beaches might not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of Barcelona, but the Catalan capital has a lot more to it than cloud-brushing cathedrals and bustling street markets.

There are plenty of seafront spots to lounge out on, and one thing they all have in common is sand - you'll have to head a long way out of the city to find a pebble beach.

Top of the list - for location at least - is the golden sands of Barceloneta. It's the city's most popular beach, which can be found just a couple of minutes' walk from the hustle and bustle of Las Ramblas. Given its location, this one gets particularly busy over the summer months, so it's one to avoid if you don't like the crowds.

For a slightly quieter vibe you can head just a little further along the coast to Nova Icaria Beach. This 400-metre stretch of sand is just past the bars and nightlife of Port Olimpic, but the beach itself is very family-friendly. A children's play area, beach volleyball courts and ping-pong tables can all be found here and it's got a Blue Flag tick to its name too.

And perhaps the best all-round beach in Barcelona is Bogatell Beach. This 600-metre stretch of powdery white sand comes with Blue Flag status and a prime position on the coast, just five minutes' walk from Port Olimpic's bars and restaurants. There's plenty of space for lounging around and it's popular with sporty types too, due to its designated areas for beach volleyball, football and basketball.

  • 1. Barceloneta Beach

    Barceloneta Beach
    Nicholas Gemini

    Travel time from Barcelona: approx 0.5 hrs

    The closest beach to the centre of Barcelona, Barceloneta Beach stands on the city's eastern coast in a former fishing district mentioned by Cervantes in the Spanish classic Don Quixote. Now, perhaps ironically, home of one of Europe's largest aquariums, Barceloneta is very well provided for when it comes to amenities and facilities.

    In addition to showers, toilets, and changing rooms, some areas of the beach offer Wi-Fi connectivity. There are… read more »

  • 2. Bogatell Beach

    Bogatell Beach
    Markus Tacker

    Travel time from Barcelona: approx 0.5 hrs

    Stretching for 700 metres along Barcelona's coastline close to the Olympic Port, the sands of Bogatell Beach are generally considered to be less crowded on the busiest days than nearby beaches such as Barceloneta and San Sebastià, from which it is separated by a stone breakwater.

    All the same, Bogatell Beach provides pretty much everything that anyone could want for a relaxed day on the beach, with a lifeguard… read more »

  • 3. Sant Sebastià Beach

    Sant Sebastià Beach

    Travel time from Barcelona: approx 0.5 hrs

    Noted for its modern tower and integrated cable car station (for trips up to Mount Monjuic), Sant Sebastià Beach lies in the Cuitat Vella district of Barcelona immediately along the coast from Sant Miquel Beach. One of the city's oldest and best loved beaches, Sant Sebastià comprises biscuit-coloured sands that continue for around a kilometre in length and average widths of 80 metres.

    Sant Sebastia is well equipped with… read more »

  • 4. Nova Icària Beach

    Nova Icària Beach
    Ronnie Macdonald

    Travel time from Barcelona: approx 0.5 hrs

    Located north of the Olympic Port and next to Bogatell Beach in the La Vila Olimpica del Poblenou area of Barcelona, Playa de la Nova Icària lies at the heart of the city's coastline.

    Created for the 1992 Barcelona Olympics, Nova Icària Beach has a reputation for being one of Barcelona's more tranquil urban beaches. That said, amongst its 400 metres of golden sand you'll still find plenty of… read more »

  • 5. Mar Bella Beach

    Mar Bella Beach
    Markus Tacker

    Travel time from Barcelona: approx 0.5 hrs

    This semi-urban beach on the coastal reaches of Barcelona is located between Bogatell and Nova Mar Bella beaches. Like its neighbouring areas of golden sand, Mar Bella Beach has a good number of public facilities, including toilets, showers, a children's play area and beach volleyball courts.

    On Passeig Marítim, the promenade that runs behind Mar Bella, visitors will also find table tennis tables, a range of bars and… read more »

  • 6. Nova Mar Bella

    Nova Mar Bella
    Sergei Gussev

    Travel time from Barcelona: approx 0.5 hrs

    Backed by modern high-rise apartment buildings, Nova Mar Bella beach was part of a larger regeneration scheme that coincided with the 1992 Barcelona Olympics and aimed (successfully) to reunite city and coastline.

    Though a man made construction, Nova Mar Bella still has a lot going for it. For one thing, it is a slightly more tranquil experience than other nearby beaches, and has managed to maintain its local vibe, appealing to… read more »

  • 7. Platja de Llevant

    Platja de Llevant

    Travel time from Barcelona: approx 0.5 hrs

    Barcelona's newest beach is also its most easterly, as its name suggests. Opened to the public for the first time in 2006, Platja de Llevant has already managed to garner a Blue Flag award for its cleanliness and the quality of its facilities.

    Comprising light coloured sands that stretch for 400 metres along the coast and another 75 metres or so inland, Platja de Llevant is the next beach along from… read more »

  • 8. Banys del Fòrum

    Banys del Fòrum

    Travel time from Barcelona: approx 0.5 hrs

    When is a beach not a beach? When it's Barcelona's Banys del Fòrum, a sand-free modernist pool of constantly refreshed seawater protected from the open waves of the Mediterranean by a series of screening posts made – elegantly – from concrete.

    Constructed in 2004, Banys del Fòrum Beach is a great place to head for anyone most interested in the swimming side of being beside the coast, with the enclosed pool… read more »

  • 9. Castelldefels Beach

    Castelldefels Beach
    © Eva11975

    Travel time from Barcelona: approx 0.5 hrs

    This five-kilometre stretch of golden sand is one of Catalonia's most beautiful beaches.

    Families flock here in the summer months, thanks to the family-friendly activities on offer, with everything from a toy library to kids' play areas. The clean and shallow waters also make it a safe space for the little ones.

    It's a big hit on the facilities front too - as well as plenty of parasols and sunbeds, you'll find… read more »

  • 10. Platja de Garraf

    Platja de Garraf

    Travel time from Barcelona: approx 0.5 hrs

    Just along the coast from the ever-popular Castelldefels, you'll find this peaceful and pretty spot, which is ideal for avoiding the crowds.

    This 350-metre long stretch of biscuit-coloured sand is a popular place with families, thanks to the clear, calm waters and chilled-out vibe.

    Lots of the beachgoers here are day trippers from Barcelona, who are looking to escape the hustle and bustle of the city for a few hours,… read more »

  • 11. Platja de la Bassa Rodona

    Platja de la Bassa Rodona
    Jorge Franganillo

    Travel time from Barcelona: approx 1 hr

    Located in Sitges, roughly 20 minutes from Barcelona, Platja de la Bassa Rodona is best well known as the region's premier gay-friendly beach. As one of the most central, it's here that many gay couples choose to sunbathe, although increasingly relaxed attitudes towards the gay community mean many happily bathe on beaches closer to the Catalonian capital.

    As a result of its history, visitors can expect some male nudity, but… read more »

More beaches near Barcelona