City Break: Barcelona, the Cosmopolitan Capital of Catalonia

July 10, 2017

Barcelona has turned out to be my number one favourite city in the world. After being home from Tenerife for just 6 days, I was so ready for some more sun and Vitamin D. I had a day trip to Barcelona when I was younger whilst holidaying in the South of France with my family. Ever since, I have always wanted to return and fully explore the city. Although I explored the city, I couldn’t possibly see it all in 4 days. I didn't appreciate how vast Barcelona truly was until I was actually there!

Barcelona is a city that has everything. In other words, it's my type of city. If I could live there, I would be on the next plane out of here. Harbours, beaches, wonderful places to wine and dine and countless designer and high street shops really make this city as glamorous as it sounds. Metro stops at Catalunya and Passeig de Gràcia offer the best areas for you shopaholics. I swear there is a Mango, H&M and Zara on every street! These metro stops are also superbly located for La Rambla, which is probably Barcelona’s most busy street, bustling with shops, restaurants, cafes, souvenir shops and ice cream parlours not to mention the famous La Boquería.

The city is very commercialised but also has a wonderful past and culture with buildings designed by the great Gaudi spaced throughout the city. Sagrada Família is truly spectacular in both stature and architectural design. With the project due to finish in 2026, 100 years after Gaudi's death, I am sure the church will be an even more popular tourist attraction. I will definitely be visiting once the intricacy of Gaudi's design is finally completed but I'm sure I will have visited several times before that. 2026 is too long to wait!

Park Güell, a park designed yet again by the wonderful Gaudi, based on geometry and mosaic work was also a beautiful place to visit. It offered breath-taking views of the city. We also visited Tibidabo, a mountain 512m high which gave even more astounding views over the city.

A visit to the Arc de Triomf, a triumphal arch built by Josep Vilaseca i Casanovas also showed stunning architecture and design.

And for you foodies like me, a trip to La Boquería, Barcelona's food market is sure to get your taste buds screaming, eyes widening and stomach growling. From traditional meat, fish, fruit and vegetables that are usually found at any market, a wide variety of other treats are available to buy including a vast selection of ice cream, sweets and nuts. And at super cheap prices too!

Transport in this city is amazing. Metros, trains, trams, funiculars, bicycles and even Segway’s are options to get you around the city quicker than on foot. According to my iPhone, we walked 100km in 4 days! I have blisters to prove it!

I explored most of the southern areas of the city. Next time, I would like to explore more northern areas and also give the theme park PortAventura World a try which apparently is great fun.

We stumbled on an NBA cafe which my boyfriend, Matt, insisted on going in as he is an avid basketball fan. I have to admit, they do some unreal buffalo chicken wings! I can't believe how tiny I felt there standing against the true heights of professional basketballers and I'm 5'9! I think Matt just wanted to prove how close he was to LeBron's height.

I would definitely recommend visiting Barcelona but make sure you plan where you want to go beforehand as there is so much to see! I would recommend a metro ticket; I got a 3-day metro pass for just over 21 euros which is an absolute bargain especially if you visit at the weekend when the metros run all night on a Saturday. I can’t wait to return, soon hopefully!

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