Recommended areas for nightlife in Bilbao
There are many bars in Bilbao to spend your evening: your choices are Casco Viejo or Garcia Rivero. The common choice is to go to Casco Viejo the old city. This part is lively with many tourists (unfortunately).
The less common choice is Garcia Rivero, a zone of bars close to the Indautxu Plaza where the residents of the city gather in the evenings. It will be lively in the evenings here too but Garcia Rivero is less crowded with tourists. The atmosphere is “cuadrilla” like that of a group of friends.
Best nightclubs in Bilbao
The nightclubs that matter in Bilbao are almost all in the center of the city so they are easily reached on by foot. The first 2 (Cotton and Abadia) below are my favorite club and bar in Bilbao. The 3rd one Bilbaina Jazz Club, is a very nice place for Jazz.
Cotton Club is near the Indautxu Plaza has great atmosphere. The music is classic rock by lesser known groups, and the crowd is young but more closer to middle age, no teens for sure. The place has a nice sense of aesthetics, it is unpretentious and not flashy. This place makes me and my friends relax.
Abadia del Gin Tonic bar
Abadia del Gin Tonic bar has very nice local gin and tonic. The number of variations of Gin run into the hundreds. It has a genuine, friendly staff and a crowd that does not seem to be in a rush. It is a very comfortable place to go at the end of the day.
Bilbaina Jazz Club
Bilbaina Jazz Club has been in Abando since the early 90’s, started by local jazz fans who created a venue for recognized jazz artists from all over to perform in Bilbao. The performances are regular and go beyond the mainstream jazz.
The rest of the clubs below are also very good, so pick whatever you think is more suited to you.
- Backstage is near the Kafe Antzokia, close to the river. It is focused on new, trendy and commercial music when it is a club at night. It is also a concert hall for shows and other performances.
- Sala Moma Bilbao is a new club with a nice location centrally near the NH Hotel. It is meant to be for older audiences in their 40’s.
- Budha Bilbao is also near the NH Hotel. It has modern music and is quite popular but with service sometimes an issue when it is crowded. Frankly it is like any city club.
- Marquee is near the Azkuna Zentroa cultural centre. It is a typical club for young people.
There are 2 nice clubs away from the city and some people on a long visit to Bilbao prefer to go here.
NightClubs on the Outskirts of Bilbao
- Sala Sonora in Astrabudua is a 15-minute metro ride away from Indautxu. It is a large space offering 3 different areas catering to different music styles: 1980 to 2000, techno and EDM, and a bar.
- Indian Sopelana is in Sopelana, a 20-minute taxi ride; or 35 minutes metro from Indautxu plus a 2km taxi ride. A short walk from the beach, it has an award-winning Pintxos bar. It is open starting noon, every day!