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Leisure and Culture

Smoking in Barcelona

Written by Dylan

If you are new to Barcelona or if you are just visiting, you may find you are unfamiliar with the smoking laws here. Here is a breakdown of the different laws in Barcelona regarding whether you have permission or not to smoke in a certain area.

Here is a breakdown of the different laws in Barcelona, so that you know where you can and cannot smoke.

rental apartments in Barcelona

Tobacco Laws

smoking barcelonaSince January 2nd, 2011, smoking is prohibited in public buildings and on public transport in Barcelona. This includes workplaces such as office buildings and factories or manufacturing plants, airports, train stations, sports stadiums, nightclubs, pubs and restaurants. It is also forbidden to smoke within a designated zone outside hospitals, health centers, and outside schools, including playschools. Prior to 2011, establishments such as bars and restaurants were given the choice of whether or not they allowed people to smoke on the premises, however so few places willingly applied the ban that it was therefore decided to enforce it.

Smoking is permitted on restaurant terraces, in people’s private homes, and on their balconies. If you are renting an apartment or house, it is important to check with your landlord if smoking is permitted as smoking in the apartment may affect your deposit and relationship with the landlord. You can also smoke in designated hotel rooms and of course, outside in the fresh air with the exception of the areas listed above.

Shisha Bars

Smoking is permitted inside premises with special allowances such as shisha bars. This takes into account that only people who will be directly involved in the inhalation of smoke will be inside the establishment

Shisha is a flavored tobacco which is vapourised and passed through a glass or ceramic water basin in a hookah and inhaled through a pipe. This is a typical Middle Eastern tradition. Ziryab Hookah Lounge in El Born is a popular spot among locals with a really relaxing atmosphere. Here is their menu, if you would like to try it out for yourself.

Tabac Shops

Tabac Shops are legal retailers of cigarettes, rolling tobacco, pipe tobacco, and cigars. The average price for 20 cigarettes is approximately €5. Follow this link to see a map of the Tabac Shops around Barcelona. Their opening hours are usually between 9 or 10 a.m. until 8:30 or 9 p.m. with some stores opening for 24 hours.


Photo credit: Vaping360 via / CC BY

Photo credit: Vaping360 via / CC BY

We here at ShBarcelona would like to remind you that smoking can have serious effects on your health, with over 50,000 people a year dying in Spain alone from smoking-related diseases. If you are visiting Barcelona, it is best to visit your GP and get some advice about the hurdles involved and what to expect with quitting smoking. If you are living in Barcelona and are thinking about kicking the habit, you can visit this website to learn more about quitting smoking and get some free reading material.


About the author


Dylan is a freelance writer in Barcelona, enjoying the Spanish culture and weather along with the incredible opportunities life has to offer.


  • So is it allowed to get a license in Barcelona for shisha Lounge, is it difficult to get it and how much it could cost?

  • You say fresh air but it last to move for such a long time with the wind and come to back and around.
    It really smells that I cant breath, even it is outside.
    In Japan, outside is totally public place where everybody can run, ride bike, so deep breath is need but need to stop breathing until smoker passed 20m away. That mean i cant breath forever outside in Spain.
    Please understand this uncompleted rule makes visiotor away and money never drop off by non smoker visitor anymore if you make smoker filled even outside.
    Smoking restaurant I can go out.
    But how terrable I cant go away from smoking monstor outside anywhere in Europe. Terrable.
    I remind to skip my high qualified job in EU because I hate smoker and guys act like cool with smoking but actually very ugly and boyher my life time all over.
    Especially center of the city, shopping area shouldnt be permitted smoking. It is no meaning to say non smoking activity. It is totally all over smoking environment.

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