Sant Jordi, or Saint George's Day is much more than a simple feast day in Barcelona. It is the Catalan equivalent to Valentines Day and love is in the air!
Each year, the streets are filled with people strolling around grasping books and roses wrapped in ribbons in the colours of the Catalan flag (The Senyera).
Sant Jordi is not a public holiday; therefore all of the shops and restaurants are open as normal. However, there is no mistaking the feeling that this is fiesta time.
The story of Sant Jordi is the same as the one that is known worldwide. Saint George was a hero - he saved a beautiful Princess who was about to come to a sticky end at the hands of a dragon who had been terrorising a village. The various versions of the story but these facts always remain the same. Sant Jordi is the Patron Saint of Catalunya and his tale is well-known throughout the city.
The basic idea for Sant Jordi is that men give women roses and women give men books. And it can be anybody, not necessarily your partner or somebody who you have taken a liking to! For this feast, boys buy roses for their mums; girls buy books for their friends. Also, in today's forward thinking society the rules are no longer set regarding who gets what. A girl is just as likely to receive a book and vice versa.
The streets and squares of Barcelona are filled with stalls selling books and roses. It is a picturesque sight in the Spring sunshine. Couples walk hand in hand clutching roses. The buses are jam packed with old Catalan people, tipsy from a day of strolling from bookshop to vermouth stop.
During Sant Jordi stalls crop up all over town. However, for the largest concentration of stalls it is best to head to the large square and streets: as shown below. La Rambla will be the centre of all the activity however it can become a little overcrowded during peak hours in which case you could try going to one of the other squares mentioned below.
Plaça Sant Jaume
Metro: Jaume I (Yellow Line, L4)
Metro: Catalunya (Red Line, L1) or (Green Line, L3)
La Rambla (Las Ramblas)
Metro: Drassanes (Green Line, L3)
Metro: Liceu (Green Line, L3)
Metro: Catalunya (Green Line, L3)
Map showing the centre of activity for Sant Jordi Day in Barcelona.
|= Metro Stops||= Hotel|
The event is an all day event so there are no fixed hours. The best thing would be simply to make your way to anywhere along Las Ramblas which will be the centre of all the activity. However you will find flower and books stalls popping up all over the city on this day.
Romantic Hotels in Barcelona
If the theme of your visit to Barcelona is romance then we have put together a review of what we think to be the most romantic hotels in the city centre. Staying at one of these hotels could add that little extra romance to your visit.
If you reason for a visit on Barcelona's Valentine's day is to propose we have also put together a page on the best romantic proposal spots that add that extra drammatic setting.
The Feast of Sant Jordi is a treat for the eyes with the streets filled with stalls selling beautiful flowers. Make sure to bring your camera and plenty of memory cards. Take a stroll, soak up the atmosphere and enjoy the day Catalan-style!