Barcelona - Good Views & Good Food.
A few months back Tom and I decided we wanted a little trip for ourselves in early June, nothing too expensive or far to travel, just simple. I went to Barcelona last year for a Uni field trip and loved the city, and since it takes under 2 hours to fly there and Tom had never been before we thought it would be a perfect choice.
We managed to squeeze a lot into our little 5 day trip, with a delightful 4am wake up to fly out and a late night flight home. We were lucky in that our hotel was located close to the metro, so getting around the city was easy.
After five days of mooching, I realised the particular two factors that attract me to Barcelona. Architecture and Food.
Before I get onto that, I want to comment on the passion of the city, having studied it at uni I know the the tensions between Catalonia and Spain. Our visit coincided with an independence rally at the Palau Nacional, in wake of the referendum being announced. I've never been in an atmosphere like it, thousands upon thousands coming together, waving the Catalan flag with such happiness over the prospect of the referendum. It was incredible too see the passion behind the city, something that fleeting tourists often don't appreciate.
Firstly when it comes to architecture I have a ridiculous number of photos of gorgeous buildings, I could add in photos of Gaudis Sagrada Familia and Park Guell, but there are enough photos of those tourist attractions as it is! As much as they are phenomenal, I feel like Barcelona has a lot more to offer than that.
The various cathedrals, the Palau Nacional, Museu Militar de la Barcelona and the Cascada fountain are a few examples of the stunning architecture of the city.
The open nature of the streets and the various squares ensure that, despite the masses of tourists, it never feels too crowded! I also love the greenery, especially down La Rambla (photo below).
I don't want to ramble on and on about buildings though, when I could talk about the food. If you love seafood then you're in for a delicious time. We ate so much food when we were out there we definitely put on weight.
Honestly, this was the only time whilst we were there when I thought I should actually take a picture of this glorious food. These were taken in a restaurant on the marina, which I think was a chain restaurant but it was still amazing. We had a couple paellas whilst we were there and seriously, yum. The mussels were incredible, heck it was all delicious, but our eyes were definitely bigger than our stomachs on that night.
Food across the board in Barcelona is cracking, but due to the seafront location, seafood is fresh and so tasty. So if you go to the city, it's gotta be seafood and tapas, with a good glass of Sangria. Perfect.
If you're ever thinking of a quick city break, I'd highly highly recommend Barcelona, such a vibrant city with so much to do and a strong personality to it.