Why a Barcelona Workation is just What You Need

Considering a workation in Barcelona?  Working abroad for a couple of weeks or months is a great way to travel the world without quitting your job, and workations are becoming more popular as working remotely is now more common than ever.  In this post I’ll share why I think Barcelona is the perfect workation destination, and share all of the information you might need to plan your Barcelona workation today!

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What is a Workation?

Let’s start with the basics.  If you’ve stumbled across this article and are wondering what on earth a workation even is, let me explain.

A workation is a combination of work and vacation, where you take your laptop and work remotely from a fabulous location where you can enjoy the lifestyle and benefits of living abroad for a set period of time without quitting your normal job and without moving abroad permanently.

Workations vary in length from a few days to several months, but you will need to discuss what is possible with your employer and decide on your own personal preferences.

A woman working on her laptop outside a Barcelona Cafe
Working in Barcelona from Your Laptop – A Perfect Barcelona Workation

Do you Need a Visa for a Workation?

No, unless you are planning to stay in one country for an extended period of time, or if you would need a visa to travel there as a tourist, typically a workation of between 30 and 90 days doesn’t require a visa.

This does vary depending on where you decide to go for a workation.  Thailand for example only allows tourists to stay in the country for 30 days without a visa, whereas if you want to visit Europe, you can stay for up to 90 days if you’re from the USA.

Mexico allows most visitors to stay for up to 6 months without a visa, and Georgia (the country) for up to 1 year.

If you want to workation in Barcelona, if you are not European you can stay up to 90 days in a 180 day period, as per the rules of Schengen.

Why Choose a Barcelona Workation?

Now for the good stuff, why visit Barcelona for a workation?  Well, as you know this whole website is dedicated to sharing how amazing Barcelona is so I could talk all day about why you should stay in Barcelona for longer than just a brief holiday.

However, I’ve tried to summarize it in a few key points.

Barcelona Has It All

There are many reasons why you should visit Barcelona, it really is a city that has it all.  No matter what you like doing, eating or drinking, you will find it here.

One of the things Barcelona is famous for is its exceptional architecture, most notably the awe-inspiring works of Antoni Gaudí. From the iconic Sagrada Família to the whimsical Park Güell and the extraordinary Casa Batlló, the city is a treasure trove of architectural wonders.

The Iconic View of Barcelona from Park Guell
The Iconic View of Barcelona from Park Guell

With its deep-rooted history and proud Catalan identity, Barcelona offers a rich cultural experience – it is a Spanish city that isn’t really Spanish at all. You’ll get the best of both worlds here as well as a fascinating history.

Explore the Gothic Quarter’s labyrinth of streets, visit the imposing Cathedral, and discover ancient Roman ruins in the historic city centre. Barcelona is also home to a range of world-class museums, such as the Picasso Museum and the Museum of Contemporary Art, the Egyptian Museum and many more.

Barcelona’s location on the Mediterranean coast adds an extra layer of charm to the city. Its beautiful sandy beaches, like Barceloneta, offer the perfect spot to unwind, soak up the sun, and indulge in beachfront dining.

The city’s promenades and parks, such as La Rambla and Park de la Ciutadella, buzz with life, inviting locals and visitors alike to savor the relaxed Mediterranean lifestyle.

Barcelona is a food lover’s paradise, boasting a world-class culinary scene that blends traditional Catalan flavors with innovative techniques. From tapas bars to Michelin restaurants, you’ll love eating in Barcelona!

Barcelona is known for its lively festivals that showcase the city’s passion and energy. Witness the dazzling human towers during the traditional Catalan festival of La Mercè in September, or experience the book stalls and rose-filled streets of the Sant Jordi festival in April.

The city also hosts renowned music festivals, such as Primavera Sound, Sónar and Cruilla, as well as hosting the biggest stars at the Palau Sant Jordi Stadium.

Well, that’s a few reasons why you should visit Barcelona, but why should you workation here?

A Perfect Location

Barcelona’s location and excellent transportation infrastructure make it easily accessible from major cities worldwide. The city is well-connected through its international airport, served by most airlines as well as high-speed trains to other cities in Spain and Europe.

In addition to getting there in the first place Barcelona also has an extensive public transportation system, allowing for seamless travel within the city as well as convenient day trips or weekends away to explore more of Catalonia and Spain.

Get to Know Barcelona Better

As well as all of the amazing reasons to visit Barcelona, staying here for a longer period of time will give you longer to get to know the city, to learn more about the Catalan culture and experience the real Mediterranean lifestyle, to discover more of Barcelona, seek out its hidden gems and to really feel at home here.

I first lived in Barcelona for a year as a student and I fell in love with the city.  Barcelona is special, and once you’ve lived here it never leaves you.  Immerse yourself in local markets, enjoy delectable Catalan cuisine, and experience the vibrant nightlife. Barcelona offers the perfect balance between work and exploration, ensuring a truly enriching workation experience.

The Labyrinth Park at Horta
The Labyrinth Park at Horta – One of Barcelona’s Hidden Gems

Support for People who Workation in Barcelona

Not only that, but the Barcelona Tourism Office are actively supporting workationers in Barcelona, promoting the city as a destination for workations and helping you to make suitable arrangements and to settle in once you’ve decided to come here.

Barcelona Turisme has a wealth of information for digital nomads and people wanting to take a Barcelona workation, and offer the Workation Card which is valid for up to 6 months and gives you free entry to various museums as well as discounts at other top attractions in Barcelona.

If you want to stay in Barcelona for a longer period of time, there is a new Spain digital nomad visa that you can apply for – check out the details and requirements for that here.

A Strong International Community

Barcelona is a large cosmopolitan city and has a large international community.  No matter where you are from you are bound to find other people from there living in Barcelona.  It is easy to make friends as there are lots of social events, workshops, networking opportunities and language exchanges so you can settle in quickly and easily.

Joining these communities not only fosters personal connections but also opens doors to potential work collaborations and professional growth, offering endless opportunities to expand your network while enjoying your workation.

A Creative Hub

Creativity is everywhere in Barcelona.  The city is renowned for being a creative hub, for artists, entrepreneurs and startups who all flock here.  If you’re looking for somewhere to spark your creativity then this is the place – simply strolling down the street you are surrounded by unique architecture and street art, or pay a visit to one of the art museums.

It’s hard not to be inspired in a city this beautiful, and with the other digital nomads and entrepreneurs around you you can share ideas and come up with your next new business plan!

Colourful Street Art in Poble Nou
Colourful Street Art in Poble Nou

A Dream Work-Life Balance

Barcelona embodies the essence of a healthy work-life balance. The locals cherish their leisure time, with extended lunches, evening socializing, and a laid-back lifestyle. As a workation destination, Barcelona encourages you to embrace this mindset.

Take breaks to recharge at the beach, savor delicious tapas at a local restaurant, or participate in outdoor activities like hiking in the nearby mountains or practicing yoga in one of the city’s parks. The balance between work and play in Barcelona ensures you return home feeling refreshed and rejuvenated.

Inspiring Work Environment

Barcelona boasts a myriad of inspiring workspaces tailored for digital nomads and freelancers. From trendy coworking spaces to innovative shared offices, you’ll find a variety of environments designed to enhance productivity and collaboration.

Imagine working from a rooftop terrace with panoramic views of the city or a cozy café in the Gothic Quarter, surrounded by centuries-old architecture. Barcelona’s diverse workspaces cater to all preferences and provide a stimulating backdrop for your creative endeavors.

Any Downsides of Working in Barcelona?

The only real downside compared to other workation destinations in Europe would be the cost, as Barcelona is relatively expensive to live compared to other second cities like Porto or Manchester for example.  However, compared to capital cities like Paris or London, Barcelona is still relatively cheap.

Overtourism can be an issue in the peak summer months, especially if you come to Barcelona in August.  If you’re planning to come to Barcelona on a workation I’d recommend coming in the shoulder season, April-June, or from September onwards.  Barcelona in winter is lovely but it can get chilly as some apartments aren’t well insulated from the cold.

During the off-peak times you’re likely to find lower prices and fewer crowds so you can enjoy living and working in Barcelona that much more!

Co Working in Barcelona

If you want to work from an office or a coworking space, there are plenty of coworking spaces all over the city so you can find one close to wherever you are staying.  Some of the top co-working spaces in Barcelona include:

Attico Coworking Barcelona

Attico have 5 different coworking spaces in Barcelona spread across the city.  I visited Attico Med which is on the beachfront in Poble Nou.  There is plenty of desk space where you can choose to work, or head upstairs to the terrace with views of the Mediterranean.

I loved how sociable Attico was, with most people heading up to the terrace for a post-work drink – and who wouldn’t with views like that!  There is also a swimming pool for after work or for a quick dip to cool off and have a break before heading back to work.

Attico also arrange various social events to help you to meet people and to become part of the community, and they have coliving spaces in the city too.

Prices start from €35 for a day pass, and there are various options available for how often you want to use the facilities, for example 5 days in a month costs €125 or 10 days costs €179.

Attico Med Coworking in Barcelona
Attico Med Coworking in Barcelona

Cloudwork Casa Les Punxes

If you want to work in an iconic Modernist building in Barcelona, look no further than Casa Les Punxes on Avinguda Diagonal.

This beautiful building offers coworking and office spaces on their Coworking Flex or Fix passes starting from €260 a month, or access to the common areas in the lobby, office and terrace on their Social Pass from €150 a month.

Casa Les Punxes hosts various social, networking and wellbeing events on the terrace, from yoga to Creative Coffee mornings, afterwork drinks and more.

The Rooftop at Casa Les Punxes Barcelona CoWorking
The Rooftop at Casa Les Punxes Barcelona CoWorking

Where to Stay in Barcelona While on a Workation

Barcelona has a wide variety of accommodation options for digital nomads and workations, although you may end up competing with tourists in the peak months.

Hotels vs Self-Catering

For short stays you can be quite comfortable in a hotel in Barcelona, so you can go out and sample the fabulous food in Barcelona for every meal.  However, if you would prefer to prepare some of your own meals or are staying for a longer period of time, having a lounge area and kitchen space would be best.

Holiday rental apartments and Airbnbs are popular in the city, although prices aren’t much lower than hotels for short stays, you can find some decent discounts for long term stays over a week or a month.

Co-living in Barcelona

There are plenty of hostels in Barcelona that do cater more for travellers than digital nomads, but if you are on a budget workation it doesn’t get cheaper than a bed in a hostel dorm – although you might sacrifice sleep!

You could consider a private room in a hostel or apply for one of the newer coliving spaces that are springing up in the city.  Colivings in Barcelona are usually made up of large apartments with several bedrooms that are each rented out privately, with shared bathroom and living spaces like kitchen, lounge and terrace area.

These are great value and can also be useful for meeting other digital nomads, although some have minimum stays of 3 months.  Sharing space with people you don’t know can also be a challenge if you’re not used to it!

Barcelona Turisme can also offer assistance to help you find the perfect place to stay, check out the options on offer on the website here.

Have You Decided on a Barcelona Workation?

If you were considering Barcelona as a workation destination before, I hope I have convinced you to give it a go!

Barcelona combines the best of both worlds for digital nomads and bloggers seeking an exceptional workation experience. Its inspiring work environment, robust digital community, cultural immersion, accessibility, and work-life balance make it an ideal destination.

So, pack your bags, grab your laptop, and embark on a transformative workation in the breathtaking city of Barcelona. Unleash your creativity, build valuable connections, and make lifelong memories while enjoying this remarkable city. ¡Vamos a Barcelona!