You might think it is not easy for an Italian (ok, half Italian) to admit he likes Spain? Well it isn’t…. not that I have already travelled a lot to Spain, but what I have seen so far I liked. Although Italy will always be my nr 1 country to visit :-)
My favorite city in Spain until now is without any doubt Barcelona. Barcelona is one of the few cities in the world where one immediately feels like coming home. This city has something for everybody for food lovers, art lovers, beach lovers, etc…. the list is endless. Last year I took my girlfriend to Barcelona as a birthday gift… why Barcelona well, this city combines everything you expect from a city together with sea and a beach. So this way (if the weather permits it) you can enjoy both, which worked out perfectly for us and we had the best 5 days ever.
Like in every city, there are always a few ‘mandatory ‘ visits you have to do. Funny enough that most of these sight in Barcelona are designed by Gaudi :-). One of the most famous is the Sagrada Familia, it is indeed an impressive cathedral…Although we didn’t enter it, as I found 13EUR pp. a lot to visit a ‘church’. Another ‘Gaudi’ sight was Park Güel. Simply beautiful with impressive entrance and this park was bigger than I had imagined it… The most famous piece at this open air museum is without any doubt the mosaic bench. You also have a great overview over the whole city from here A tip, first visit Park Gel and then Sagrada Familia, as it is on your way back to the city center.
There are of course much more must see museums and parks (for who likes it of course), like the National Museum of Art of Catalonia , Montjuïc park, Palau de la Musica Catalana, Liceu opera house etc…
But as I was here, only going museums (especially with great weather) isn’t the only thing one wants to be doing :-) . One of the things you can also do in Barcelona is shop until you drop :-) and you guys know how much the ladies like to see all those shops, so better put on some good footwear! Like in every city, usually the men are waiting outside of the shop. I also have never seen soooooooooo many Zara’s in my life.
The central place in Barcelona is Plaça de Catalunya , from this square you have roads leading you to all the sights, La Rambla, Passeig Garcia (this is where you can find all the fancy shops) , … La Rambla was actually one of the places in Barcelona I liked least , it was too busy, lots of pickpockets and I don’t know I just didn’t like it. Only 1 exception, what did like on the Rambla was Mercat de la Boquiria! I have never seen so much food displayed in one place, so foodlovers and maybe even nonfood lovers… This is maybe one of my favorite sights in Barcelona ;-). FYI, they all cut the fruit, etc… if you want to eat it siting at the beach or on a bench in one of the parks …
I know this trip was for my girlfriend’s birthday, but food was still a very important part of this trip! The Mercat de la Boqueria is something you really have to see, but for people who don’t like this crowded places, you can find covered market places like this all over Barcelona. A great alternative is Mercat de Santa Caterina, with one of the most colorful rooftops :-) and a very nice little restaurant Cuines Santa Caterina in this Market (you also a a tapas bar, sushi bar, take away, …).
To be continued….