Barcelona was the city in Spain that I loved! After San Sebastian, it was a big, lively, fun city that I would glad go visit again!
By this point in our trip, it was Wednesday through Friday. Keep in mind, still three girls spending 24/7 together and tired. I think Barcelona showed us (or at least mine) the grumpiness. We stayed at this nice hostel that was a big apartment with many rooms. We had one room with a cute balcony that looked right over Gran Via, which is apparently a hopping street in Barcelona. We were about a twenty minute walk from La Rambla and it was a great location! The only problem was our stupid door that no one could open, close, or keep locked because it was so temperamental. When I got up to go to the bathroom at night, (which we all know is like five times) I guarantee I woke up half the hostel. Oh well. It had a full kitchen so one night we bought microwave pizzas and salads, and another night we made a form of chicken stir-fry and salad. It was fun!
|The living room/dining room of our hostel.|
After we got settled into our hotel, we wanted to being our adventures in Barcelona! We walked Gran Via which eventually turns into La Rambla and some other popular streets of Barcelona. We found La Pedrera or Casa Mila which became our reference point for the rest of the stay. Antoni Gaudi built a TON of things in Barcelona. He did many houses, parks, building, and the most beautiful church I have ever seen. More on him later. Gran Via was lined with designer shops. I was so excited to go into one, that I kind of ended up going into about 10. DG, Burberry, Louis Vuitton, and many others. It was fun to “pretend” what we would buy if we wanted to throw out 500 euros for a scarf. After boring Kelly, we continued on and found some pretty fountains and La Rambla. This street is like the Champs Elysees in Paris or any other main street in a city. It was PACKED with people. Shops were set up on each side and you couldn’t miss the street performers. We found this awesome fresh market that, even though it was closing, was wonderful to walk through. There were fruits, vegetables, fish, meat, candies, breads, chocolates, everything. It was beautiful: all organized, colorful, and since it was closing, 2 for 1 euro! I bought a mix of fruit that was the absolute best. It was so fresh and flavorful! I could have spent hours in that place, as well as the rest of Barcelona since it was so packed.
|One of the many fruit stands.|
|I could never work here because of my OCD. I would have to keep it perfectl like this.|
|This is a candy/nut stand.|
|One street performer. There was later one who was in a box with a black cape thing on who never did anything. I was curious so I put in ten centimes and when he jumped out at me and yelled "BOO" I about died.|
|Our reference point, which we began to call the "dancing house" but is really Casa Mila.|
Thursday was the day to accomplish all of our sights to see! We started the day early and learned quickly that Barcelona does not know how to make a map. In fact, I think it was the WORST map I have ever used in my whole life. We would take a street, looking for a huge monument, and the next thing we knew, we would be on a different street, without turning, that would not be on the map. It was a disaster. We probably wasted a lot of time walking around trying to find each thing. That’s why, in my opinion, use the metro, get to where you want to go, and then walk later. Especially when there is a lot we all want to see, and no one knows the city well. Klara was 100% against taking a metro and I wasn’t about to split up, so walk our little hearts out we did, getting lost all along the way. J We saw lots of little churches and statues in the center of streets and even found a darling shop called “Barceloning” that had everything Barcelona and the cutest gifts! After passing some time there (and out of the rain that followed us our whole trip) we headed towards La Sagrada Familia: the MOST BEAUTIFUL thing I saw in Spain. Gaudi was the original designer of it, and today, it remains only 50% complete! We spent three hours walking through the church, the museum, and the taking in the beauty of it. It was negative twenty degrees in all of the whole place but that was the only complaint I had! There is stained glass inside that represents the virtues Gaudi had and believed are important. It became a basilica just last year, and the Pope was there to do it. It was a very interesting place and a must-see if you go to Barcelona!
|These pictures do not do it justice.|
|Details, tall, beautiful. Unlike anything I've ever seen.|
After that we headed to the Arc de Triumph of Barcelona. Kind of disappointing, but still cool it see. We found a park and other cool building just around there, so it wasn’t a total waste. We found Port Vell which had lots of boats and a neat walking path along the sea. It was rainy but we still walked along and enjoyed the view. The water had buoys in it that were like little people. It was cute! Next we found a statue of Columbus that we thought we could climb to get a cool view of Barcelona, but not without a price we didn’t care to pay. After passing a wax museum (creepy looking at night, but I want to go to one!) and finding another church, we headed home to find a nice surprise! A parade, happening up and down Gran Via and loud as can be! Naturally we had to join in on the phone! It apparently was for some Saint or something that is important. Candy was thrown everywhere, streets were packed, and it was 100x better than the Sapulpa Christmas parade. Sorry, peeps, but it was. I did learn that no one in Barcelona cares to wave at people. My mom always waves at the randoms during a parade and I always laugh, but there I was, in the middle of Barcelona, waving at strangers who just looked at me weird. Oh well!
Friday morning we ventured to Park Guell, a famous park inspired by Gaudi that had amazing views of Barcelona, street bands, and mosaics all over. It was a fabulous experience. We found the FCBarcelona stadium, but decided to skip it since we had already seen Real Madrid. Turns out, Klara’s dad said that FCBarcelona is actually better than Real Madrid and we should have gone in! Oh well, one soccer stadium was enough for me! We then walked around and found some more things by Gaudi, a monastery (with bad signs from Barcelona telling us how to get there!) and the Royal Palace where we saw people taking their wedding pictures. I guess I am going to have to fly to France for mine since everywhere I go people are taking wedding pictures.
|One of the thousands of mosiacs. Beautiful.|
|Sitting in my cubby!|
That night, we walked La Ramblas once more, and headed to the Olympic Stadium and to see the Magic Fountains. Barcelona hosted the Olympics in 1992 and most of the buildings are still there. We went at night, which probably wasn’t ideal, but it was still cool! We saw the main stadium which now I am assuming is a concert hall since ads for Justin Beiber’s visit were everywhere. It is right behind an old art national art museum which is followed by the Magic Fountains. Best experience of my entire Barcelona trip: the magic fountain show! It is so cool. They play different songs and turn the water different colors, heights, shapes and stuff with the tune. It is awesome! After watching that, we headed to the beach! We wrote in the sand and collected some sea shells. It was a successful night!
|Fountain show. Youtube it. It is awesome!|
|This man REALLY had to go ;)|
|Reverting back to the old days, huh?|
We left on Saturday for Toulouse so our time in Barcelona was up! I liked the city a lot, and would have liked to spend some more time on the beach during the day! If you are going to go to Barcelona, bring your own map and plan on where you want to go before you go! Also, they do have gelato so bring 2 euro for that J