You already know that I love Barcelona, but I wanted to share my top ten things to do in this bella ciudad (that’s beautiful city to those of you who don’t hablo español). It’s hard to narrow it down to just ten places, but for you, my lovely readers, I’m making the sacrifice. Here are your first four – in no particular order:
- Sagrada Familia AKA Scared Family – I know, I know, it’s another church you say to yourself. If you’ve been to Europe, you’ll see your fair share. No offence to my Catholic readers – you have some fabulous architectural marvels, it just gets a little church-y when you go from city to city. Gaudi’s Sagrada Familia is different though – it’s a building still under construction for one thing estimated to be complete in 2026. For another, it’s Gaudi people! That means unusual architecture and overall amazingness and yes, that’s a word, or if it’s not, it should be. I could go on and on, but I’m going to let the pics speak for themselves. Just a hint – pre-book your tickets, or if you can, get a guide, they’ll give you details that you would never know just visiting it on your own. Don’t skip the museum at the end. It’s pretty cool. If your wondering, it’s a Basilica, not a Cathedral – there is nary an Archbishop in site at this modern marvel.
2. Park Guell – Yup – more Gaudi. If you are a regular reader, you will already have read a bit about my obsession with this place. I missed it my first time which makes me a dummy. It’s one of the most unique places that I’ve ever visited – if you ready my previous entry, you’ll see some of the fab pics from PG. Gaudi thought of everything. Even the benches are ergonomic. There is plenty to see, and you don’t want to rush. Give yourself at least 2 hours to walk through it if you can. You won’t be disappointed. You’ll see structures that look like the underside of an elephant, a gigantic lizard, gargoyles and more in the world’s best park. You have to pay to get in, but it’s worth it.
3. The Mercat – You’ll find this at Las Ramblas – another must do. Apparently this market is very touristy and a lot of locals have moved on to greener pastures but it’s still worth a look. Let’s face it, if you are paying to stay in a hotel, you are a tourist. You can be pretentious and sniff that if locals don’t go, you shouldn’t either, but you aren’t Spanish and neither am I. Go and enjoy. The produce looks amazing. If you are an animal lover, be aware, there are a lot of butchers in the market, and you will see things that you may not want to. Let’s just say, ham is very popular here. If you are ironic, and like the song fish heads – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JKDtUzRIG6I – you will see those too, and that song will be in your head ALL DAY LONG.
4. Plaza de España is one of those GINORMOUS European complexes that makes you feel small and insignificant. If you already feel that way, and haven’t been to the Plaza de España then perhaps some of Dr. Phil’s sound advice is in order. This is just a really beautiful photo opportunity. It provides you with a great view of the Venetian Towers, an old bull fighting arena which is now a shopping centre – YAY to Barcelona for getting rid of that blood sport and is a great place to catch transit if you need it. You don’t need a lot of time there, unless you just want to sit and people watch.
I’ll finish the list in my next entry. Until then, adios amigos and amigas!