School will be out soon and the kids won't be going back for a long, long time. Nearly three months of long, sunny carefree days may be a delight for the children, but it can leave a lot of parents scratching their heads about what to do with them, particularly if mum and dad both work.
Luckily, there is no shortage of options to keep younger members of the family happy and busy. Many local parents turn to casals (summer day camps) for the remainder of June and at least some of July. Most schools, public and private, run camps which cost around €100 per week, including lunch; there is usually a half-day option too. So, if you prefer your children to be in a familiar environment, this is a convenient and cheap option.
The casals run on a weekly basis, so you can sign your kids up for as long as you want to. How exciting and adventurous the camp is will depend very much on the school. There is usually lots of arts, music, workshops and excursions, while some will have more of a specific focus. Casals are also run in local civic centres. The Generalitat has a comprehensive guide to all of these casals—read more here.
Here's our selection of some of the best casals around Barcelona. And if you can recommend any others, please add them to our Comments section at the end of the article.
American School (Esplugues) The American School is holding a summer camp from June 27th-Friday July 22nd and offer morning (9.30am-2pm) and all day (9.30am-5pm) options. Activities include arts, sports, video and swimming. All teachers are qualified, native English speakers and transportation to and from the school is provided. www.asbarcelona.com
Benjamin Franklin International School The BFIS is offering a Young Scientist Summer Camp, focussed on a different science project each week. It takes place from June 27th to July 22nd, from 8.30am/9am till 2pm for children aged six to 15. www.bfischool.org
Collage: This creative and educational centre in Gràcia will hold casals from June 27th – July 29th and September 5th– 9th, for children aged between four and 13 The team is native English speaking and there are no more than five children to each carer. Each week has a different theme, including theatre, science and recycling. www.collagebarcelona.com
Oak House. Native English teachers lead this summer camp which goes from June 22nd til July 15th and welcomes children from age three to 15. They offer lots of sports, including sailing, fencing and swimming and a weekly outing to the Canal Olímpic. The timetable is 9am til 5pm (with the possibility to extend to 8am and 6pm). www.oakhouseschool.com
Santa Clara International School. The school's summer camp is open to children aged from one to 18. Based on the Rio 2016 Olypmic Games, it will offer children an interactive peek inside participating countries' cultures, customs, cuisine and more. The programme include indoor and outdoor activities, from music, jewellery making, theatre and art to sports and water play. http://santaclaraic.com
La Marelle: This is a great option for younger children. The cafe/activity centre in the Born will offer casals from June 20th till August 12th and September 5th till the 9h. Catering to children from 15 months to six years, days will be packed with music, art, play and trips to the park. They speak Catalan, Castilian, French and English, and cook organic food. Choose between a half day or a full day. lamarelle-barcelona.blogspot.com.es
Kinder: This preschool in Poblenou offers day camps where Catalan, English, German and Spanish are spoken. The accent is on creative play and they cater to children aged between two and eight. www.kinderbarcelona.org.
Happy Milk: This 'Moms and Kids Club' in the Eixample offers a packed calendar of activities for parents and children all year round. In the summer they hold a casal from June 22nd -July 29th and September 1st-9th. Each week has a different theme such as Crafty Kids, Super Chefs and Let's Dance. The price is €145/week for half day and €220/week for full day. A Each casal is run by native English speakers and there are a maximum of six children to each carer. http://happymilk.org
Keiko's Dream: This centre in Poblenou offers activities in English all year round. Their Urban Camp runs from July 4th-15th and is for native English and French-speaking children aged between four and nine. www.keikosdream.net
British School (Castelldefels): Located in Castelldefels, the British School offers three casal options: the Summer Play School for three to five year olds, the Activity Camp for six to 13 year olds and the Language Camp for 12 to 15 year. They run from June 27th to July 22nd. Part-time and full-time are available. www.britishschoolbarcelona.com
International School of Catalunya (La Garriga): ISCAT offers a Forest School experience during July for children aged three to 12. Trained, English-speaking Forest School practitioners run the programme, which includes play-based, educational activities which use the area’s natural resources, including the nearby bosc del Malhivern. www.iscat.es
International School of Barcelona (Sitges): The International School of Barcelona offers several different daycamp options. www.internationalschoolbarcelona.com
Barcelona Zoo: The Zoo holds very popular four and five-day casals with different focuses, such as the farm and ponies, drawing animals and the zoo in English. Each particular casal is designed for a specific age group, from between five and 13 years. The casals run from June 22nd till September 9th. There are discounts for zoo card holders. www.zoobarcelona.cat
Olympic rowing channel: Sporty children from the age of seven upwards will have a ball with the multisport casals at the Olympic channel. A plethora of sports is available including football, volleyball, windsurfing, rowing and archery. There is also an option with more limited sports available for under sevens. There are both full and half day choices between June 22nd and September 9th. www.canalolimpic.cat
Base Nautica: Kids can learn to sail at one of Barcelona's best sailing schools. Besides sailing, they can also try their hand at kayak, windsurf, paddle surf and surf. The casals range in duration from four days to 10 days, beginning on June 27th and running until September 15th. There are different groups for children aged between five and 18. www.basenautica.org
Club Natació Barceloneta: The CNB offers different camps for children aged two and a half to 14. Multisport camps include workshops and sports such as swimming, sea kayak and tennis, depending on the age of each group. These cost from €156 per week. They also offer specialist camps in different sports, from football to waterpolo and trampolining. http://cnb.es/
Bricks 4 Kidz is holding summer camps perfect for any lego-crazy child. There are five week-long workshops from June 27th to July 1st, then another from September 1st-9th. Each has a different theme, from exploring the animal kingdom, travelling Europe to directing a stop motion film. One week costs €160 (9am-1pm) or €200 (9am-3pm). http://bricks4kidz.es/barcelona/
I Am Patchwork: Crafty kids can get creating at this centre for all things handmade on C/Casp. They hold summer morning and afternoon courses. www.iampatchwork.com
Al Carrer is the first skate school in Barcelona that actually takes place in the streets. Classes introduce kids to skateboarding from an early age and help them learn new social and phisical skills such as balance, physical fitness, perseverance and respect.