Here’s another (late) post about the beautiful city of Barcelona! It was my dream for a while to visit Spain and Barcelona exceeded my expectations, I wanna go back there many times more to enjoy the city to the fullest!
If you don’t feel like reading so much, you can skip to the end of this post where I summarize some options of where to go, eat and party.
The first day, we arrived at the hotel in Barcelona at 8:30, left the suitcase at the reception because our room wasn’t ready yet and went to have a cup of coffee while planning the day until we could enter the room. After that, we left our luggage in our room, took a bath and had lunch nearby, at Ancentral Bar. There, we ordered the “Menu Del Dia” – or menu of the day – which consisted in entrance (I had a Potato Tortilla with bruschetta, but my boyfriend asked for bread with gazpacho of beetroot, a little bit of acorn ham, oil and heavy salta – both delicious!!) + main course (we both had steak tartare – also very tasty) + dessert (we could choose between 3 different flavors of ice cream) + water. I truly recommend this place, the service was great, the food came quick, they spoke English, the food was delicious and the prices were fair (each Menu Of The Day cost only 11 euros!). We continue to La Pedrera (we planned on having the “The Origins” tour, which is at night, but gave up on the idea), walked towards Casa Battló (buy your tickets online!), Casa Amattler, Plaza de Catalunya, went check Palau Güell at La Rambla (but again, just the facade), went to a market called La Boqueria – which was VERY crowded, then headed to Port Vell to have a drink at Starbucks (by the way, I tried for the first time the strawberry lemonade iced tea and now I can’t think of anything else to order when in Starbucks! So refreshing!), and then we finally went to the Arc de Triomf Of Barcelona! It seems a lot to walk, but it was only 15km (ok, not so little, but we stopped to have drinks in between, so it was an “ok” distance to walk). The city is beautiful (In my opinion, much more than Madrid), but it is very warm (35ºC – and that seems warmer than it really is) and crowded with tourists.
The second day started like this: hotel with no energy, cell phones without battery (because we thought it had charged overnight), we were late to arrive in Sagrada Familia (because we had already bought the tickets online – and you should do it as well!!! Not always they have tickets to sell there and when they do, the lines are huge). When we finally arrived there, I was barred from entering because my dress had my back exposed (you can’t expose neither shoulders or back and you can’t be wearing any very short clothes), so I had to buy a very touristy t-shirt written “Barcelona” for € 7 with the walking sellers. I wore it on top of my dress and came in. All the symmetry of the cathedral really calls your attention and also the fact that it was planned a century (or more) ago. After that, we took a bus and went to Park Güell. We got there and the tickets were sold out for that day (you can still come inside the park, but you can’t visit it famous parts). Then, we walk 1 km to the bus stop, in a sun of 39ºC, which made this short route seem like it took forever. We got on another bus – so crowded, that not even the driver let more people get in. We stood up during the 20 stops until we got to Palau de la Musica Catala to buy tickets for the visit (you can do it yourself or have a guided visit) and for a piano concert. We had lunch at a restaurant nearby called “Green Shots“, in which we chose a salad of watermelon and cheese thinking that it was tomato and cheese – we didn’t like it, but the main course, spinach lasagna was very good! The day was more or less a disaster, so we decided to go watch The Incredible 2 (which was released the day before yesterday in Europe). Loved it so much! The day was starting to get better, so we went to Montjuïc by subway to watch the water show. We arrived there and we found out that at this time of the year it only starts at 9:00 p.m., and it was only 7:00 p.m, so we went to a supermarket, bought our “dinner” and went to the hotel room to get some rest (the high temperatures make you feel so tired in so few time).
The lesson of the day: Buy tickets online in advance!
The third day we started visiting the Palau de La Musica Catala, which is different from every other concert hall that I’ve ever been! Since 1997, it’s a World Heritage by UNESCO. You have probably seen many pictures of its famous balcony, with very colorful pillars (each one symbolizing aspects of nature). But other things may call your attention: there’s natural lighting inside the concert room – I don’t recall seeing it in any other music hall. Also, spread around the building there are many roses (that’s why the Palace is also called “rock rose garden”). Also, “The embouchure of the stage is adorned with spectacular sculptures, allegories of the world of classical and popular music: on the right, a bust of Ludwig van Beethoven on Doric columns that support clouds from where emerges the Cavalcade of Valkyries (reference to Richard Wagner); to the left, children standing holding the bust of Josep Anselm Clavé, in an allusion to the text of the song “Les Flors de Maig” (The flowers of May) of this author.” source. I was admired by the architecture of that place – not because it was aesthetic beauty, but because of its originality and abundant details). After that, we went to La Barceloneta, the main beach in Barcelona. It’s a beautiful beach, but unfortunately (maybe because it was summer and very crowded), the sea was full of trash – I didn’t even go into it. But I surely plan on going back to Barcelona and visit other beaches, because they’re really pretty! We went back to the hotel to dress up for our night piano concert.
The last day we didn’t do many things. Because I’m writing a month later, I don’t exactly remember what we did besides having lunch at La Antigua Cabaña, where we also had the Menu Of The Day (for the entrance, Daniel asked trinchat and I asked Potato Tortilla again – every time that I could order it, I did haha – for the main course I had Salmon a la plancha with tomatoes and potato and Daniel had something else that I don’t remember and for dessert we had cheesecake). The menu cost 11,25 euros we could also order something non-alcoholic to drink. I liked the entrance and main course a lot, but the cheesecake wasn’t tasty at all.
You can also do less touristic things, but since it was our first time there and the hot weather was tiring us, we couldn’t enjoy much of it. In any case, here is what I have planned before traveling, with much more options than what we ended up doing:
Where to Eat
• Tapas: Carrer Blai, Bar La Plata, Cal Pep • Menu del Día: Catalana II • Comida Espanhola: Elisabets • Croquetas: La Xampanyeria • Paella: Xiringuito Escribà • Rooftops: Barcelo Raval, Majestic rooftop terrace, Hotel Marina H10, The Condes de Barcelona Hotel
Where to Go
• Parque Guell • Palau Guell • La Pedrera/Casa Milà • Casa Batllò • Casa Amatller • Sagrada Familia • Catedral de Barcelona • Bairro Gótico • Barceloneta • Ciutadella • Las Ramblas • Montjuic / Fonte Mágica • Palau de la Música Catalana • Arc de Triomf • Plaza de Cataluña • La Boqueria • Port Vell • Sagrat Cor • Montserrat Mountain and Monastery (1hora away) • Costa Brava (1hour away) • Pink Facade (Carrer de Pàdua, 75)
Where to Party
• Opium • Pacha