So she finally arrived in Barcelona after much planning and much anticipation with enough suitcases and excitement to last a lifetime! Haha! We started our trip in Barcelona, while staying with a friend, right in the middle of the city. After an awesome breakfast of eggs and ‘pan con tomate’ prepared at home, first sight on the list, as it was my favorite on my first trip to Barcelona, was to see and experience the Sagrada Familia. It is an amazing church, designed by Antoni Gaudí, starting construction in 1882 and still, over 100 years later, it is not finished. We were told on our guided tour that the estimated completion date will be in 2026. We have already decided to make a trip back to see the finished product! What an amazing piece of artwork! We were astonished by the intricacies that each piece of the outside displayed as well as the clean ‘forestlike’ inside with all of the creative stained-glass placed perfectly to let the sunlight pass through.
After that, it was off to admire more of Gaudí’s works in the Park Güell. This park is placed at the top of the city with a great view looking over the whole city. From the tip tops of the park you can see great views of the ocean as well as the many awesome sights of the city. There are also some of Gaudí’s creative houses that he designed for Mr. Güell himself. The detail is quite overwhelming! We really enjoyed the views from this part of the city and the amazing background that Gaudí’s mosaic benches created!
As it approached 2:30 we knew it was lunch time here is Spain, and with an awesome recommendation from a friend, we hunted all the way to the back of the Mercado Boquería, where we found an enchanting little restaurant that served only the freshest foods bought straight from the market! What a great idea, right?! Lovely food and lovely company situated in such a cool place! Perfect.
We decided after to walk down the famous ‘Ramblas’, the walkway that connects the port with the city center, and found ourselves enjoying the water down at the marina, admiring all of the sailboats that are docked in the port. As we walked, the sun began to set and colors of pink, blue and purple filled the sky. Absolutely beautiful!
On our way back to the apartment, we made one last stop at the ‘Champagnería’, another awesome recommendation! What a cool little joint. Only serving champagne, your choice of rosa or blanco, you could choose to pair your overflowing glass with an authentic ”butifarra” sausage and onion sandwich or a ración de queso manchego…super classy right?! Awesome idea…I think I might have to bring this one back to the States to share! :)
After a busy busy first day, it was off to bed and ready to explore tomorrow! We woke to the church bells sounding and the shakes of the subway passing below, both signs that we were in the heart of the city! So lucky! After an awesome birthday breakfast prepared at home, we again set out to explore the city. First on our list, the Barrio Gótico, with its small cobblestone streets and breathtaking cathedral. As we visited this part of the city we were also informed that the Catalan Music Palace was a must see. Wow was that right! What a beautiful building with an inside to match. I am not sure I have ever seen such striking design all in one place, from stained glass, to mosaic tiles, it was a sight to see! Highly recommended!
As promised, a lunch on the water was the next thing on our to-do list. As we headed to the beaches, we fell upon one of the cutest restaurants I have ever seen! Right on the water…you can see our view was amazing, and the food, even better! We each had our own made-to-order paella dishes with fresh caught seafood! Delicious! The views and the ambience was exactly what she had hoped for! After a relaxing lunch and walk on the beach, it was back to the apartment to pack up and head to the train station where we were on our way to A Coruña, located on the complete other side of northern Spain! We had a ‘room’ on the train reserved so that we were sure to get some good sleep before we began our tour of the western coast. As we departed from Barcelona, all packed away in our cozy train compartment, we were excited to see what we would wake up to the following morning! A happy happy Spanish birthday!! ¡Salud!