Easter In Barcelona 2019

Processions, Masses And Traditions

Although Easter in Barcelona is less spectacular than in other parts of Spain, there are still quite a few processions with La Rambla, Barcelona Cathedral and Carrer Ferran being the main locations.

The main processions take place on Palm Sunday - Diumenge de Rams in Catalan and Domingo de Ramos in Spanish, which is the Sunday before Easter week and Good Friday - Divendres Sant and Viernes Santo, in Catalan and Spanish respectively.

Good Friday and Easter Monday are both public holidays so remember that all the the shops will be closed and Easter Sunday tends to be a celebrated at home with the family.

As the schools are on holiday over the Easter period, there are often special activities organised for children in the local neighbourhoods and Tibidabo Amusement Park, Barcelona Zoo and Barcelona Aquarium often put on special programmes.


Easter in Barcelona 2019 Dates

Easter Processions In Barcelona

Religious Processions in Spain are organised by 'Hermandades and Cofradias', which are groups of lay people based at particular churches.

In Barcelona, the umbrella organisation for these lay brotherhoods is the Consell General de Germandats i Cofraries de la Arxidiòcesi de Barcelona.

The two main Hermandades de la Penitencia, which organise the Easter Processions in Barcelona, are 'La Hermandad de la Macarena y la de Jesús del Gran Poder', which organises the processions from the Església de Sant Agustí on Good Friday and Easter Sunday, and 'Nuestra Señora de las Angustias', which leads the procession from the Església de Sant Jaume on Easter Sunday.

These processions are very solemn affairs in which beautifully decorated floats with an effigy of Jesus on top are paraded through the streets.

Palm Sunday Fair In Barcelona

Palm Sunday Processions And Masses

Palm Sunday always falls on the Sunday before Easter and celebrates Jesus' entrance into Jerusalem on a donkey so donkeys and palm leaves figure highly in most celebrations.

All churches have Palm Sunday masses, which include a ceremony known as the 'Bendición de la Palma' or The Blessing of the Palm, in which priests go outside the church to bless the congregation, who are carrying 'rams de laurel' or laurel branches and palm stalks and leaves - called palmons and palmas. 

The boys carry the palmons which are the tall palm stalks - and the girls carry the palmes, which as you can see in the picture above are smaller with shorter stems and intricately woven crosses and adornments.

All of the childrens' palm leaves have small bags of sweets or toys on the palms tied to them, and are often decorated with Catalan senyera ribbons.

You'll see children dressed in their Sunday best carrying these palm leaves in all of Barcelona's local districts and neighbourhoods.

If you are in Barcelona City Centre, you should visit the Fira de Rams markets, outside Barcelona Cathedral, La Sagrada Familia or along Rambla de Catalunya, where you can buy palmes and palmons and other Easter paraphernalia.

Diumenge de Rams - Palm Sunday Procession

  • Led by La Hermandad de la Macarena y la de Jesús del Gran Poder
  • Paso: La Burreta - Little Donkey 
  • Celebrating Jesús' entry into Jerusalem on a donkey
  • Parroquia de Sant Agustí
  • Start: 10.00 Església de Sant Agustí, Plaça Sant Agustí, 2, Raval
  • Finish: 12:00 Església de Sant Agustí
  • Route: Plaça Sant Agustí, Carrer Hospital, La Rambla, Carrer Santa Ana, Portal de l'Àngel, Carrer Cucurulla, Carrer Portaferrisa, La Rambla, Carrer Hospital, Plaça Sant

Bendició de la Palma - The Blessing of the Palm

Good Friday Processions And Activities

There are two main parades in Barcelona on Good Friday.

The first starts In the El Raval neighbourhood at the Església de Sant Agustí church on Plaça Sant Agustí at 5 pm with a very nice procession consisting of two "paso" floats and around 300 participants and musicians.

At the Església de Sant Jaume church on Carrer de Ferran in the Gothic Quarter of Barcelona another Good Friday Easter procession starts at 19.00 hours.

To celebrate mass, you can attend services at Santa Maria del Mar church, Barcelona Cathedral or the Sagrada Familia.

If you're prepared to get on the metro, I really recommend making a trip to Hospitalet, which hosts the two biggest processions in the Barcelona area - one in the morning and another in the evening.

Good Friday - Divendres Sant Procession

  • Led by La Hermandad de la Macarena - Paso Cristo
  • Start: 17.00 Església de Sant Agustí in Plaça Sant Agustí, 2, Raval
  • At 20.00 they meet with the procession of Nuestra Señora de las Angustias in front of Barcelona Cathedral
  • Finish: around 22.30 Església de Sant Agustí
  • Route: Plaça Sant Agustí, La Rambla, Carrer Santa Anna, Portal de l'Ángel, Carrer dels Arcs, Plaça Nova, Avinguda Catedral, Boters, Pi, Plaça del Pi, Carrer Cardenal Casañas, La Rambla, Carrer Hospital and Plaça Sant Agustí

Good Friday - Divendres Sant Procession

  • Led by La Hermandad y Cofradía de Nuestra Señora de las Angustias
  • Paso: Nuestra Señora de las Angustias - Our Lady of Sorrows
  • Start: 19:00 Església de Sant Jaume at Carrer de Ferran, 28, Barri Gòtic
  • At 20:00 they meet with the procession of la Hermandad de la Macarena in front of Barcelona Cathedral
  • Finish: 23:00 at Església de Sant Jaume
  • Route: Església de Sant Jaume, Carrer Ferrán, Plaça Sant Jaume, Carrer Bisbe, Avinguda de la Catedral, Boters, Portaferrissa, La Rambla and Ferrán, Església de Sant Jaume

Easter Sunday - El Dia de la Mona de Pasqua

Easter Sunday is a family day in Catalonia and rather than Easter eggs children receive what is known as the Mona de Pasqua.

I've shown a traditional Mona de Pasqua above and eggs feature highly as a symbol of rebirth.

The custom is that this cake is given to children by their godparent, but these days a Mona is normally quite an elebarate chocolate creation.

In fact, chocolatiers and bakers all over Catalonia compete to make the biggest and most spectacular Mona de Pasqua creations and the best ones are featured on TV.

If you you don't get invited to spend Easter Sunday with a Catalan family, it's well-worth paying a visit to the Museu de Xocolata - the Chocolate Museum - in El Born, although during Easter week all cake shops around Barcelona will be displaying Monas in the window.

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