europe / travel / Uncategorized

Barcelona, where it all started

Barcelona, champagne for everyone! what a beautiful place.  The place where I first decided I was going to travel the world. Being from 2009, my memory of exact events is hazy, but I have done my best.

This trip was booked on a whim, at 17 years old Daniel and I went against the typical week in Spain holiday and went all out at a 5* hotel in Barcelona.

Sounds perfect, but we should have researched more into it. Our hotel, Gran Sofia was lovely, we could see Nou Camp from our room, but it was in the business district where there wasn’t really much going on.  The tall building  in the photo below was our hotel, just a short walk to Nou Camp, Barcelona FCs world famous football ground, which you can also see.hotel

We spent the first few days taxiing around to Las Ramblas, where the tourist spots were, including the Hardrock café, we spent a night admiring the memorabilia, drinking cocktails and vowing we would visit every hardrock in the world. When we eventually looked at the tram and subway system it was really easy, and would have saved us a lot of money had we used it earlier.

I remember one night, we decided to walk from our hotel into the centre for dinner, we had been walking for over an hour and were more than ready for some food, feeling lost and defeated we hailed down a taxi (I love doing this, I feel so American!), and asked for the hardrock café. It took us just around the corner and then charged us 4 euro! If only we had persevered.

Excuse the poor quality photography, and my general presence in the photograph, but that Hardrock was easily the best one I have ever been to! The underground bar there is incredible.

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These photos really are not the best, but this is down by the beach, we only spent a few hours here, due to Daniels complete lack of sunbathing skills.

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La Sagrada Famiilia was just outstanding. We had a shaky start to the day, when walking through the subway underground tunnels I could see a man through the crowd staring and walking straight towards me, instinctively, my arm went down and held my bag, which was lucky as he barged past me and pulled my bag off my shoulder! Luckily, I had a good grasp on it, and was able to get away with just the shock! Daniel shouted back at the man who had disappeared into the crowd, within seconds, it was all over with.

I experienced a few of this type of thing in Barcelona, whilst on an elevator I felt a man attempt to grab my purse, again without success.
I either look like an easy target, or my bag is just really fashionable and everyone wants it!

Anyway, despite currently being covered in scaffolding, as they are continuing to improve the structure of the building.. for..erm..the last 100 years.  Gaudí, who designed the building saw its completion as his main task in life. I hope one day it gets completed. We didn’t go in, due to the huge queue that went halfway around the cathedral! Opposite the cathedral is a little park, we sat there on a wall, and admired the building.

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Also around that area the streets are very Gaudi inspired, it is a beautiful area, I wish we had spent longer here!

I am not really a follower of football, but the tour around Nou Camp was so fun! You get to go down to the grass and up high in the executive boxes, both of which provide an incredible view of the stadium, which is quite simply breathtaking! You also enter the players changing room, the press room and a museum, where the trophies are held! Here champagne and snacks are provided, I cant recall what snacks they were, but I can remember that they were posh, and tiny!

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The shop at the end of the tour was also interesting, and very interactive, as you can see, I got very hands on.

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This meal waswithout a doubt, the best I had in Barcelona, it was my first experience of tapas. We went for tea around half 6pm, and found the place to almost empty. I didn’t know then that in Spain they eat tea quite late, it became busy around 10pm with everyone else eating their food. As you can see on the lovely photograph, it is still light out!

The grilled tuna is all I can remember eating, it was so fresh and the expensive wine helped it all go down a treat as well!

After the lovely meal, we went to the famous magic fountains, which is apparently the place where the most proposals occur! We went when it was dark, which I would say is the best way. The light show was complimented by an awesome music soundtrack, it was all very dramatic. We fought through the crowds and got right up close, sitting on the walls of the fountain, by the end of the show we were soaked through! My photographs of the fountain are mostly covered in huge water drops, but it was so much fun.

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Here are a few more photos from my short but sweet time in Barcelona.

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