e flew in Friday morning to the BCN airport, and grabbed the Aerobus to city centre. It runs pretty much constantly, and is pretty reasonable at 5.90 euro per person for a one way trip. Since we couldn’t check into our hotel until later in the afternoon, our plan was to get dropped off near Las Ramblas and go in search of lunch. We found paella (I know, not traditional in Barcelona, but still delicious), chorizo soaked in cider and some fried potatoes. Onward to our hotel, the Generator Hostel, which is part hostel, and part hotel. I was a little nervous about staying in a hostel since I hadn’t done that since university, but reviews indicated that the hotel rooms were separate and very nice. They were correct, and I would definitely stay there again. At 26, we were nowhere near the oldest people there, in fact it looked like entire families were staying there. The room was great, on the top floor with a balcony that begged for a glass of wine (which we unfortunately couldn’t do, due to alcohol not being allowed in rooms.)
The neighborhood, Gracia, is filled with restaurants and bars. Be prepared to eat late dinner, but not too late, since everything will probably be closed by midnight, except for drinks.
We wandered to Parc Guell, a famous architectural feature in the city by Antoni Gaudi. Most of the park is free, but to see the famous gatehouse and tiled lizard you have to pay. I couldn’t find the information indicating this on the website, but after 6:30 pm, they let us in for free, so that was a win! The park boasts excellent views of the city from the top, so its definitely worth the walk. This was followed by late night tapas at a few different restaurants and a bit of local wine.
The next morning, we headed back to Las Ramblas after grabbing some espresso and pastries for breakfast and then to La Boqueria, the famous market. This market is massive and appears to have anything you could want (and lots of animal body parts you probably don’t want…). It was chaos, but we managed to get some freshly squeezed fruit juice and chorizo.
We then headed to the Sagrada Familia, which I’ve posted about here and definitely recommend. We returned to Las Ramblas that night for a drink, an experience which is notoriously touristy, and I’m glad we only did it once, we seemed to find better food and drink in Gracia and other trendy neighborhoods than there. Still, the crowds and the plazas lit up at night are something to see.
Sunday involved a trip to Montserrat, but more on that later. Barcelona was a city I definitely enjoyed, as it was easy to wander the wide streets and come across random delicious restaurants and beautiful buildings and neighborhoods. Hopefully someday I will make it back!