Tourist Groups banned from la Boqueria in Barcelona
With its entrance just off the bustling thoroughfare of La Rambla, the Mercat de Sant Josep de la Boqueria, known simply as La Boqueria, is one of Barcelona’s biggest tourist attractions. Everyday social media is flooded by pictures of the fruit, vegetables, fish and the many other products that are on sale. It is one of our favourite places in the City, and a wonderful assault on the senses.
But, in yet another move to help the balance between locals and tourists, the market has banned groups of more than 15 tourists from entering the market during the busiest times of the week – Friday and Saturday mornings. If tourist groups of over 15 people do visit the market during the restricted hours, security guards will inform them of the rules and escort them out. The measure comes in the wake of a petition by stallholders at La Boqueria to Barcelona’s market institute requesting that group access be limited to avoid overcrowding. The objective is to “assist the proper development of market activity and avoid blockages inside the market”.
Barcelona’s city hall has put the regulations in motion, it announced in a statement released on Tuesday this week. Large tourist groups will be banned from the market between 8am, and 3pm.
We are Barcelona Bienestar are in favour of this move. The market is an amazing experience for our visitors, but it is not primarily a tourist attraction; it is a living, working and breathing market. Whilst couples or small groups cause no major issues, it’s the large tourist groups with guides on some of the horrible package type holidays, that really do cause problems. We do not understand why tourists would even want to be herded about the city in large groups like cattle. That is not the best way to experience Barcelona, and it is certainly not the way that Barcelona Bienestar treats our valued guests.
There is a balance between local life and the vital trade that tourists bring into the City. Barcelona relies on the money that tourists bring into the economy, but that tourist trade should not overly compromise the quality of local life.
We advise our clients to visit all the main attractions out of the peak times, especially Fridays and Saturdays.
If you do not want to be part of the crowd, and you want a tailor-made high quality Barcelona experience, speak to us about organising your holiday. It’s what we do best.