They’re weird, tacky, tasteless, yet totally Barcelona. If you’re looking for a cheap and original holiday souvenir (particularly a Christmas present), the Caganar is the way to go. A Caganar is a figurine of a Catalan man (or basically any character from nuns to caricatures of famous people ), dressed in traditional clothes, squatting with his pants down and taking a poo. Believe it or not it’s THE hottest selling item during the Barcelona holiday season. The story goes that the Caganar’s poo is seen as a good luck sign because it fertilizes the earth securing a good harvest for the coming year.
Another favourite souvenir from Barcelona (or indeed anywhere in Spain), is anything leather. Bags, belts and shoes are all excellent holiday gift choices. Granted, they may not be a typical Barcelona present but it’s a versatile gift for the coming holiday season whether it be Chanukah, Christmas, New Years or “just because I’ve missed you!” There’s plenty of leather shops around the city, in particular in the markets of Gracia which are open daily except for Sundays. (during the holiday season and most weekends in December they also open on Sundays).
Then there are other typical Barcelona ceramic, porcelain and pottery souvenirs such as the ubiquitous multicolored mosaic lizards, frogs and crocodiles. For the best prices avoid Las Ramblas, the Paseo Del Born and Carrer Feran and Carrer Avinyo and poke around in some of the smaller side streets, where you can often find the same merchandise but cheaper.
And of course how can you leave Barcelona without something by Gaudi. It may be a cliché, but it’s Barcelona’s pride and joy and the bottom line is that no one’s going to turn their nose up at a tasteful Gaudi holiday gift. There are posters, mugs, paintings, clocks, pens and even Gaudi kitchen appliances. Rather than buy anything in the Parc Guell shop or near Sagrada Familia however head to Paseo de Gracia or the old city away from the mainstream tourist sites.