Skip to content

9 Best Restaurants Near Barceloneta Beach, Barcelona

Last updated on January 15, 2018

I’ve spent the last three months living in an old fisherman’s flat, deep in the heart of Barceloneta – Barcelona’s quintessential beachside barrio. And I’ve discovered, whilst eating and drinking myself into an early grave, that it is in fact one of the most vibrant and thrilling places to indulge in quality seafood and authentic tapas in Barcelona.

Prepare to be seduced as I show you around what I’m convinced are the best restaurants and tapas bars in Barceloneta – all stumbling distance from Barcelona’s vibrant city beach and the luminous Mediterranean Sea.

(Updated January, 2018)

1. La Cova Fumada – Because Life’s for Living

La Cova Fumada Tapas Bar in Barceloneta Beach BarcelonaSeñora shuffles through the thick of the crowd, through the jewellery hawkers and musicians who tumble through the back door unannounced and flirt with raspy renditions of flamenco rhapsodies. She’s seen it all over the last 55 years, as she’s traipsed from her pantry to her corner kitchen.

There is no menu, but the waiters – third generation brothers – will tell you what’s what. “You’ll want the bombas, though, no?” And yes, you will want las bombas, because it was here at La Cova Formuda that the bomba (spicy potato meat balls), one of Barceleona’s most iconic tapas dishes, was invented during the Spanish Civil War. Order them muy picante and with plenty of ice-cold beer to guzzle them down with.

Finish with their “Signature Coffees”, named Carajillo Pirate and Carajillo Cariñosa, respectively, which are laced with long pours of cognac that will make your veins swell and heart pound. So what if it’s only Thursday lunchtime, life’s for living, no?

Address: Carrer Baluard, 56, 08003 Barceloneta (Barcelona)
Nearest Metro: Barceloneta
Average Price Per Person: €15 – €20

2. Can Maño – Deep Dive into Catalan and Spanish Cuisine

Can Mano Seafood and Tapas Restaurant Barceloneta, BarcelonaWith its harsh strip lighting and bathroom-decor tiled walls, there’s no getting away from the fact that this neighbourhood seafood restaurant looks like a total dive. But line up long enough to get a table – you can order a beer to drink in the street while you wait – and you’ll soon see what all the fuss is about.

Think five-star seafood (the meat is rather good too) at jaw-droppingly low prices. The service is rough and ready, as is the essential homemade plonk that they pour from industrial barrels. Order a few raciones of whatever stands out – as the waiters will tell you if pushed, “Everything’s good here!”

Address: Carrer del Baluard 12, 08003 Barceloneta (Barcelona)
Nearest Metro: Barceloneta
Average Price Per Person: €10 – €15

3. Cal Papi – Catch of the Day

Cal Papi Tapas and Seafood Restaurant in Barceloneta BarcelonaAs you duck through Cal Papi’s warped wooden doors you feel as if you’re climbing down into the bowels of a ship. Fishing nets and ropes hang from wood-panelled ceilings and animated groups of happy locals huddle round barrels to share seasonal tapas and catch up on the latest gossip.

Expect generous portions of donut-sized calamaris, mussels and scallops served with juicy wedges of lemon, and make sure to ask for the daily specials which offer the best of whatever came in fresh that morning. See it all away with a bottle or two of their house wine – which is something between a cider and a dry white wine – and watch the room light up as the chef Carmen bounds in and out of the kitchen with bountiful plates of food, personally delivering them to tables with pride and beaming smiles.

Address: Carrer Atlántida, 65 – Bajos, 08003 Barceloneta (Barcelona)
Nearest Metro: Barceloneta
Average Price Per Person: €10 – €15

4. El Vaso de Oro – Culinary Theatre in Motion

Cerveceria el Vaso de Oro Tapas bar Barceloneta BarcelonaInfamously narrow and overcrowded, this bar-come-captain’s dining table is manned by an army of white-coated barmen who whistle and sing as they pour flutes of their hoppy home-brewed beer and prepare plates of tempting tapas. And it’s all brought to life by dazzling displays of bravado and a real sense of showmanship – they’re not barmen, they’re stars!

Don’t wait until it “quietens down”, it’ll never happen, just barge your way in and don’t be afraid to make new friends. Yell your order as loud as you can, drink, eat and be merry – this is where great nights out in Barcelona start.

Address: Carrer de Balboa, 6, 08003 Barceloneta (Barcelona)
Nearest Metro: Barceloneta
Average Price Per Person: €15 – €20

5. La Bombeta – Traditional Tapas for Connoisseurs

La Bombeta tapas restaurant Barceloneta beachThere’s a real sense of warmth and familiarity in this larger than life tapas restaurant, where a mixed crowd of raucous locals, in-the-know tourists and billionaire yacht owners line up for exceptionally authentic Spanish and Catalan cuisine.

The vibe is informal and fuelled by a constant supply of wine and friendly service, epitomised perfectly, you might say, by the restaurant’s slogan, which translates to something along the lines of: “We don’t speak English, but we make f***ing good bombas!”

These fist-sized balls of mashed potato and minced meat are deep fried and served in a spicy, garlicky alioli sauce. Other must-tries are the artichoke hearts and steamed mussels, served simply with lemon. Finish with the iconic Catalan dessert, Crema Catalana and a strong cortado coffee. That’s how to do lunch in Barcelona.

Address: Carrer de la Machinista, 3, 08003 Barceloneta (Barcelona)
Nearest Metro: Barceloneta
Average Price Per Person: €15 – €20

6. Bar Jordi – Go for Aperitivos, Never Leave

Bar Jordi Tapas Restaurant Barceloneta Beach BarcelonaWith its notable bodega bar roots and the Mediterranean Sea less than a minute’s walk away, Bar Jordi attracts crowds of sun-struck beauties who come for excellent vermouth, wine, refreshing draught beer and homely tapas. It’s the kind of place you enter with the intention of grabbing a quick aperitivo, but end up staying for hours at a time, sipping and eating away the rest of the day.

Prop yourself up at the bar or secure some prime real estate at one of the giant barrels out front and order a vermouth and a selection of tapas. The peculiar but delicious carbassó amb crema de pollastre (a creamy ball of courgette and chicken) offers something a little different, and the patas bravas here are said to be among the best in Barcelona. Bar Jordi is an essential pitstop on Barceloneta’s ever popular tapas route.

Address: Carrer de l’Almirall Cervera, 23, 08003 Barceloneta (Barcelona)
Nearest Metro: Barceloneta
Average Price Per Person: €10 – €15

7. Can Solé – The Best Paella in Barcelona? Probably.

Can Sole, best paella and seafood restaurant by Barceloneta beach BarcelonaThis legendary seafood restaurant dates back to 1903 and offers an authentic glimpse of old-world Barceloneta. Owner José María has been in charge since 1975 and upholds the local tradition of serving top quality paella and seafood. No short cuts. No expense spared.

Apart from the shiny new open kitchen that glistens out back for all to admire, little has changed here in over 100 years. The huge round tables are still draped in crisp white tablecloths and adorned with hefty pieces of cutlery. This is still the perfect place for important family get-togethers. This is still the place to celebrate occasions that are truly worth celebrating.

The walls are covered in photos of local celebrities who have dined here over the decades, including iconic Catalan artists Joan Miró and Antoni Tàpies, and other more dubious “stars”.

Start with the speciality ‘sepias troceadas’ – slow-baked squid drenched in a rich tomato salsa – and follow with a sizzling pan of Can Solé’s signature paella with ‘frutos del mar’ (fruits of the sea) and langoustines.

It’s not cheap, but it is entirely authentic, high quality traditional cooking that draws on the freshest possible produce. If you’re looking for the best paella in Barcelona and don’t mind dropping a few yo-yos (euros) for the pleasure, you’ll be hard pushed to find better than this.

Address: Carrer de Sant Carles, 4, 08003 Barceloneta (Barcelona)
Nearest Metro: Barceloneta (Yellow Line)
Average Price Per Person: €30 – €50

8. Segons Merkat – Paella, Romance and Michelin Mentions

Segon Merkat Seafood Restaurant Barceloenta BarcelonaClean and elegant, warm and considered, the food is the main protagonist at this Michelin-recommended seafood and tapas restaurant. With exceptional service and a wide selection of expertly-cooked paella dishes and fine wines to choose from, Sergons Merkat provides a real sense of romance and sophistication without feeling stuffy or exclusive.

Order a bottle of cava and a selection of grilled razor clams and classic shrimp tapas before getting tucked into paella pans of gamba-stacked fideuá – the Catalan version of paella – creamy truffles and foie. Rich and flavour-packed, you’re guaranteed to leave with a smile on your face.

Address: Carrer Balboa 16, 08003 Barceloneta (Barcelona)
Nearest Metro: Barceloneta
Average Price Per Person: €20 – €25

9. Jai-Ca – Live The Good Life

Jai-ca Bar Barceloneta tapas restaurantThis vivacious little tapas bar is brimming with locals living the good life from dusk till dawn. We went in for breakfast one day and bumped into our landlord, Josep. At 9am, he and his friend were starting their day off in true style, with jugs of red wine, giant botifarra sandwiches and honky glugs of brandy. “Now this is breakfast!” he assured us.

Squeeze in at the bar and feast your eyes on the colourful shellfish tapas and four-inch deep tortillas that keep the locals coming back in their hordes. Whet your appetite with mejillones (fresh mussels marinated in a zingy tomato vinaigrette) and a draft beer, and watch the ebb and flow of life wash through this spirited and cosy corner of Barcelona.

Address: Carrer de Ginebra, 13, 08003 Barceloneta (Barcelona)
Nearest Metro: Barceloneta
Average Price Per Person: €10

Do you have any other favourite restaurants in the Barceloneta barrio? Want to invite me to your restaurant and tell me your story? If so, please leave a comment below and let me know!

Support Me: Buy Me a Coffee/Vino

Buy Me a Coffee/Vino

Make a PayPal donation to show your support and help me publish more posts and shoot more videos:


  1. […] Seafood fans prepare. There are fantastic seafood restaurants all over Barcelona, but head to the old fishermen’s neighborhood of Barceloneta to get that true salty flavor of the city. From hole-in-the-wall fried fish joints to no-frill tapas bars filled with regulars, it’s the perfect area to immerse yourself in Barcelona’s authentic, maritime past. We could give you a dozen recommendations, but we will leave it up to our friend Ben at Driftwood Journals, a local in the neighborhood who has scouted out the best eats of the area. […]

  2. Lee Lee

    Found your helpful website…will be our first visit to Barcelona from Hong Kong. Great site to preview before arriving. Thanks for all your insightful reviews. We had booked the Mandarin month ago.

  3. Mick Mick

    Wonderful stuff. And you have your Seo nailed – I search best food near beach in Barcelona and have tried three of your suggestions. All hits. So nice to be able to ignore awful TripAdvisor. Keep it up. Mick

    • Muy bien, Mick! Thanks for your message – really glad the blog post was of use to you. Hasta la proxima! Gracias. Ben

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Support / Tip Ben

Buy Me a Coffee/Vino