B is for Barcelona and Beaches
Trip Start Aug 24, 2009
10Trip End Sep 15, 2009
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Where I stayed
We took the advice of the girls from Barcelona we met in Greece and headed to our first tapas restaurant recommended by them - Cerveceria Catalana - which happened to be walking distance from our hotel. It was wonderful and so inexpensive. We had potatoes bravas, calamari, chorizo baquettes, a Spanish omelete and sangria. A perfect recommendation! BTW - we couldn't get a table until 12:30 a.m. - people do it late here.
The next day we set out to see the sites of Barcelona, including Sagrada Familia, which is a church designed by Gaudi, the Picasso museum, Las Ramblas and some other interesting Gaudi-designed buildings
We were extremely tired of walking by the end of the day and headed home to get ready for our first big night in Barcelona, unsure of what to do. Lucky for us we ran into Chris and Kelly from Sacramento in the hotel elevator and became immediate best of friends. They had just got engaged in Europe (like us) so we all decided to make a night of it and celebrate together! What a blast...we bar-hopped starting at the Hard Rock Cafe and ending at George & Dragon (a popular name as there is two in Phoenix and one in Seattle). We had a crazy night and good times (just see the pics for proof).
Our last day in Barcelona we tried to get some shopping in at Las Ramblas, which we were pretty unimpressed with. Despite some interesting street performers it was pretty dull. Then it was off to Barceloneta Beach. We quickly realized that we should have been spending our whole time there. What a beach! The best part of Barcelona by far, live music, outdoor cafes - which made us regret the overpriced, unimpressive lunch of paella and tapas at Las Ramblas. If you ever go to Barcelona, don't eat there...too touristy and overpriced for bad food. Instead, try to get recommendations from locals for out of the way places and you will be much happier.
We had a wonderful day at the beach, the water and sand were perfect. We rode some waves, people-watched, drank sangria, ate nachos, listened to music...when going to Barcelona definitely hit the beach first, it's the best part in our opinion
Next, off to Portugal for the last leg of our trip. We can't believe our trip is almost done....so, so very sad.
One side note: We thought we would have an advantage with the language as Greg speaks Spanish, but they don't speak the Spanish we know of in the states in Barcelona. It is called Catalan and it is more than just using a lisp (i.e., Barthelona instead of Barcelona). Many words are different and Greg struggled a bit reading signs and understanding others. But there were some who did understand and actually preferred to use the "real" Spanish we learn in Mexico and the States, so that was nice.