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Is Marijuana Legal in Barcelona?

Written by Emily Elwes

If you like to smoke a little spliff, roll a nice blunt or enjoy the occasional marijuana joint, the “marijuana association in Barcelona”, “cannabis clubs”, or “coffee shops” are your best bet while in this great city.

The cannabis culture in Spain has developed quite extensively over the last two decades as the decriminalization of marijuana for personal use has taken place and current legal loopholes allow for certain situations for purchasing and smoking marijuana.

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Yet there are still some large legal considerations that you should be aware of before partaking in this relaxing activity. ShBarcelona will walk you through all the details, as for example, you can enjoy it in the privacy of your beach apartment in Barcelona – find out how below.

What you need to know: is marijuana legal in Barcelona, yes or no?

The Legalities 

Marijuana for personal use was decriminalized in Spain, although this does not mean that there is total free license to grow it, transport it or smoke it.

Even if you are staying in your short term rental, you are allowed to grow marijuana in Barcelona, but you are limited to two plants per household. There is no limit on how high they can grow, however.

herb plant

Photo via Pixabay

This makes Barcelona different from other countries, since it’s not a criminal offense to cultivate marijuana. However, all trafficking and selling activities of the controlled substance is strictly illegal in Barcelona and Spain in general.

Also, smoking marijuana is considered a private and personal matter only to be conducted in the privacy of your own home.

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Anyone caught with marijuana in their possession or smoking marijuana in public is subject to administrative fines, criminal offenses and possibly jail time depending on the enforcement officer and the incident.

Essentially, it’s best not to smoke marijuana in public, and do not transport more than 2 ounces of marijuana at any time. While transporting marijuana, keep it secure and hidden at all times.

Related article: Hash Marijuana Cañamo & Hemp Museum

What about the Coffee Shops?

If marijuana use is illegal except for personal and private use, then how can marijuana coffee shops be in booming business, you may be asking?

There are loopholes in the Spanish legal system that allows residents to hold associations or clubs within their homes, therefore allowing private cannabis clubs to operate under the guise of private associations.

hemp plant

Photo via Pixabay

The cannabis clubs of Barcelona are much different than the coffee shops of Amsterdam in the fact that they are private and require membership and are legally not allowed to advertise publicly.

This is why the cannabis culture of Spain is somewhat of an underground activity that most tourists or foreigners are not aware of, although word is spreading. To become a member of these cannabis clubs you must be referred by a current member.

With over 300 clubs active in Barcelona it can be very easy to gain access. Just be wary of street vendors of marijuana and those handing out flyers to these private clubs on the street. These activities are illegal and may be of dubious quality.

hemp plant in hands

Photo via Pixabay

The private shops come in a variety of sizes, quality, themes and target different demographics. They can be dingy or extravagant and can offer a single inferior quality product or a wide range of high-quality products.

Connect with social bloggers and Facebook pages to find out which cannabis club or Barcelona coffee shop could serve your needs.

A beach apartment can be the perfect place to enjoy quality ganja while in Barcelona – check out different types of rentals for your stay in Barcelona from ShBarcelona.

Find your place to stay in Barcelona

Have you been to any of these cannabis clubs in Barcelona?
Tell us about your experiences.

About the author

Emily Elwes

Emily is a freelance content editor & manager living & working in Barcelona. She's passionate about food, drink, language and collaborative consumption.


  • As an avid Barcelona association member, thanks for the article and the news Emily. Hopefully Catalunya can be more clear about where the future of these cannabis clubs lie

  • Hi guys , I’d be hoping to travel to Barcelona to enquire about on how to get the CBD oil with THC for medical use , for Anxiety. How does it work , do I get Accessed in one of these clubs when I arrive , do I have to bring my medical report etc ?
    How would this process work ?
    Can anyone let me know please ?
    Thank you !!

    • There is a lot of websites offering to help you in this case for a cannabis club membership, I found all to be useless sending me to expensive tourist traps.. BUT, I did find 1 honest website helping people to the avoid these tourist raps and that was

  • The 2 plants per household rule is not correct. Growing cannabis indoor or outdoor is still not legal BUT if for some reason you would get caught growing a plant or 2-4 you can still make a claim it being for your own consumption. Your plants will be confiscated none the less. Just remember there is nothing legal about it YET and you will still have to show up in court in regards to cultivating , producing cannabis and show it is not with any intent to sell. FYI there hangs still a 2 to 5 years sentence above growing cannabis. The police could not care less about your 2 plants but a shitty neighbour might…

  • i Just read this amazing article and the comments, I think @samu is right i also read some where in the internet. Cannabis is Legal in private house and private club if they have license.

    • Ms Elwes,

      “This makes Barcelona different from other countries”

      Barcelona is the name of a province, and also the name of the city which is capital of that province and region (Catalunya). It cannot be comparable with a country or countries as neither of them are a country, just administrative. regions within Spain

  • Hi Emily, I really like your article. I was looking up some of similar articles online and found that the situation around social clubs has supposingly changed a bit, but not sure to what extend. I can still find services that offer access or contact to social clubs like this one: but other pages who say that social clubs would be getting closed. Could you update your article? 🙂

    • Hi Emily, I’ll be visiting Barcelona in early March. How do you suggest I gain access to one of these clubs ? You mentioned new members need to be referred. However, I don’t know anyone in Barcelona. Would just to have a little bit during my one week trip. Any advice would be appreciated! Thanks !

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