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Magnificent and Wild: Barcelona, Spain

Barcelona Cathedral

Barcelona Cathedral

We had the best time in our two days in Barcelona.  Despite the rain, it was magical.  The city has a pulse similar to NYC or any other great city that never sleeps.  In the downtown area there are so many picture-perfect cobblestone side streets where every square foot is a treasure for the eyes and nose.  I told Jamie that it seemed to me that “even vomit would be beautiful in Barcelona.”  Mundane apartment buildings are spectacular, breathtaking architecture is everywhere, balconies overflow with plants and flowers, the graffiti is museum quality and the food and sweets – fantastico!

Can’t wait to go back in June.

Barcelona Tips

  • Buy tickets for la Sagrada Familia from any Caixa bank ATM machine.  No waiting in line.  They cost 18 euros each and I promise that going inside is worth every penny.  And that’s coming from a penny-pincher.
  • There are free walking tours leaving from the “Travel Bar” on Carrer de la Boqueria daily.  You pay the guide what you feel the tour was worth.  We had a great guide and learned a lot in 2 1/2 hours.
  • Take one walk on the Ramblas and never go back.  It’s an overpriced tourist trap, a magnet for criminals, and there is really nothing authentic about it.  Hard Rock Cafe anyone?
  • Many museums are free on Sundays, which also means they are very crowded.  But free is a good price.
  • We stayed at Pension Arosa on Portal de L’Angel Ave.  The location could not be beat at any price.   Clean and comfy.  We paid around 50 euros a night on sale.  That’s a bargain in Barcelona.
  • Don’t miss the Museu d’Historia de Barcelona.  I hate museums but this was incredible.  An elevator takes you underground where you see and walk around the excavations of the Roman city that once was.  Hard to find.  You have to walk through a bookstore to get to it.  Worth looking for it.
  • Most people speak a little English at least in the tourist areas.  Of course you should try to speak Spanish, or even better the primary language: Catalan.  “Bon Dia!” is “good day” in Catalan.

Photos of Barcelona



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