Day 13 - Barcelona

Trip Start Apr 02, 2011
Trip End Apr 16, 2011

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Flag of Spain  , Catalonia,
Thursday, April 14, 2011

We woke up after a good sleep to some coastal clouds.  We found a good place for breakfast on the corner right outside the hotel, which had good pastries and coffee.  We ate outside at a small table and watched the city slowly come to life at around 9:00 a.m.  This is definitely a culture of late nights and late mornings.

Our first task was to return the rental car, which we accomplished successfully after an extended quest to find a gas station.  Having surrendered our vehicle, we checked out the Metro and were soon on our way with some two-day passes.  We found the Metro to be generally clean, prompt, and easy to navigate.  Our first stop was at the Sagrada Familia, Antoni Gaudí's monsterous masterpiece.  It is undergoing massive construction in an ongoing attempt to realize his vision.  We waited in a long line to go inside, but were unwilling to wait in yet another line to take a lift up one of the towers.  Instead we leisurely wandered around the surreal interior of the huge cathedral.

 Due to a hunger emergency, we conceded to dine at a McDonald's directly outside the church.  Rain looked imminent, so we stopped back at the room for jackets before riding the Metro toward the Barcelona Zoo.  Of course, the act of retrieving the jackets ensured that it didn't rain, but we were ready just in case.  The zoo was rather average for experienced zoo-goers like ourselves, but the weather did improve.  Afterward, we attempted to find the Zoological Museum in the surrounding park, only to interpret loosely that it had moved to a new location.  So, we walked around a bit, through Barcelona's version of the Arc de Triomf, before returning to the room to relax before dinner.

After a quick dinner of sandwiches and salad, we rode the Metro down to the shore and walked around for a while on nearly abandoned beaches under a full moon.  Then it was back to the room to watch some Europa League action before bed.
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