Barcelona’s eclectic summer music festival
By Duncan Rhodes
We preview one of the best events in Barcelona’s cultural calendar… grab a beer and meet us at the city’s musical crossroads.
Cruilla is the Catalan word for “crossroads”, and it’s a word that represents the core philosophy of this festival… an event where different musical worlds can come together and meet in the middle. One of three major international music festivals in Barcelona, Cruilla is the event with the widest range of acts on show, giving it a much broader appeal than the beloved-by-hipsters Primavera Sound, or the relentless electronica of Sonar Festival.
Originally starting life as a series of concerts in the town of Mataro (just up the road), Cruilla moved to Barcelona in 2008 and began to take the shape we know today. It has grown exponentially year on year so that around 50,000 people now make the journey to the outdoor venue Parc del Forum over the course of three days for a series of concerts by world famous artists, as well as some of the best Catalan and Spanish bands. Some of the celebrated artists that have touched down in Barcelona to play Cruilla in the past include Prophets of Rage, Die Antwoord, Asian Dub Foundation, Iron & Wine, Public Enemy, Iggy & The Stooges, M.I.A, The Specials, Gogol Bordello, Suede, Cat Power, Damon Albarn, Franz Ferdinand & Sparks, Robert Plant, Crystal Fighters and Skunk Anansie, amongst many many others.
Getting to Cruilla Festival
Cruilla takes place at the epic concrete jungle on the edge of the city that goes by the name Parc del Forum. It’s well connected by bus, tram and Bicing, but the easiest way to get there by far is on the yellow line (L4) of the metro. Simply get off at Maresme el Forum metro stop and you are five or so minutes away from the gates. It’s impossible to get lost as you can simply follow the crowds.
On the way back the metro runs until 2am on Friday night (ie. Saturday morning), 6am on Saturday night (ie. Sunday morning) and midnight on Sunday night. If you miss the metro you will have to queue for a bus or try to hail a taxi – the latter will prove very difficult just to warn you.
We’d recommend you book accommodation in the Poblenou district, as then you will also have the option of being able to walk home (although the district is quite large so check your map first!).
To grab your tickets order via the official website. Whilst Barcelona folk tend to leave things quite late, best not to wait until right the last minute to be sure of getting yours!
2019 Line Up & Dates
2019 is shaping up to be Cruilla’s most ambitious programme to date, with global superstars Black Eyed Peas and Kylie Minogue as joint headliners. Notable support arrives in the forms of Bastille, Foals, Zaz, Years & Years, Seu Jorge and Parov Stelar, while this year also gives nostalgia lovers a chance to see legendary 90s alt-rockers, Garbage, live in Barcelona. You can check the full programme here.
2018 Line Up & Dates
There’s a stellar line up rocking into town this year, and headliners include Jack White, Prophets of Rage, N.E.R.D., Justice, The Roots and David Byrne, with able support by cult favourites Orbital, Damian Marley, Chase & Status, Bomba Estereo and many many more.