Barcaaaaaaaaaa!!!!! You were a trip to remember and a special thanks to my friend Kate for housing me and showing me around her temp-abroad home.
I don’t know if it was the food, the people, the sites or the night life but Barcelona was definitely top 3 of my side travels during study abroad.
We started off our first day with a hike in Parc de Vallividera to the top of Tibidabo, a mountain that overlooks the coast of Barcelona as well as the Mediterranean Sea. If you're not into hiking, there are plenty of busses or taxis that can get you to this view.
There is a beautiful church at the top of the mountain, called the Temple of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.
While admiring the church, we met this man who has lived in Barcelona his whole life and used to go to this church with his mom when he was a child. He gave us all the history and background, as well as, his own personal experience and history here. He didn't want money, he just wanted people to get the true history about this amazing church.
Here are some photo's of the inside of the Temple of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.
On our walk back down the mountain we met three furry friends. A dog who wanted to play endless fetch with a pinecone, a shabby cat that walked us down the rest of the mountain and then another neighborhood dog who just wanted to sniff us out.
After the hike we were on a mission to find food, so we took the metro to go to the Mercat Boqueria, which was basically a giant farmers market . This place was PACKED…. and I held on to Kate and my bag with dear life, along with trying to avoid the random booty slaps we kept receiving. *cue eye roll*.
We ate from many vendors but we got our main grub from Organic Barcelona, a place that advertises “organic is orgasmic” and it was delicious. Obviously after I had to get something sweet, so we got a fresh fruit cup and then some chocolate covered strawberries, while I did my best to avoid the candy shack.
Eating my way through Europe, and hoping the food trail never ends.
We then did some shopping at Zara and a bunch of local boutiques. We took a lil' coffee break to prepare for our night out (which was obviously purely educational to experience the culture, duh).
The bar crawl originally had 5 places but... with all the fun we had at the first two, we ended up only making it to 3.
The first bar was LIME HOUSE. We enjoyed the 4 euro Mojito deal, for a couple rounds.
We then stayed at Bar (&Club) Savage for the rest of the night, and the
coolest part is that Bar Savage ended up having a secret club underground. After, we tried a third bar, but decided late night snacks was the better option.
The next day was pretty chill, we got much needed coffee and breakfast at a small little neighborhood cafe and then stayed for a bit so I could catch up on my blogs and Kate could study for her finals. After working for a bit I decided to go explore the city on my own, so I rented a scooter and made my way to Park Güell.
I went to go see Gaudi’s work, but the main house was full and not selling anymore tickets so, I went to the public park and then into Gaudi’s original house which is now Casa Museu. Even if you aren't able to go to the main attraction, the public park is full of his work and still worth the visit.
If you plan on seeing the main building, I recommend buying tickets in advance.
Then it started pouring so I made my way back, and we stayed inside for a bit and then ate Paella and Sangria, while walking around the streets and browsing local vendors.
Kate had her final, so I was originally planning to get on a scooter and go get breakfast on my own, BUT surprisingly enough... one of my friends from a summer camp I did in Poland as a kid, happened to be in Barcelona too. We decided to go get breakfast together at The Citazen Cafe and then sat in the city center watching the locals and catching up on the past couple of years.
After my friend left, I continued my solo exploring and decided to scooter across town to see the Sagrada Famillia, but once again.... tickets were SOLD OUT. I enjoyed the outside of the building, got an ice-cream and took the time to appreciate I was in Europe doing nothing but traveling, eating and enjoying life.
Kate met me at the Sagrada Familia after her final and then decided we wanted to snack. We got the infamous Patatas Bravas, which are diced potatoes covered in a creamy, spicy, magical tomato sauce. If you are ever in Spain, I highly recommend trying this dish.
After that we head back to her place and took a taxi to the airport, asking the driver to take the scenic route, where I got to site see a bit more.
Barcelona was amazing and I can’t wait for the next time I visit. Hopefully by then the Sagrada Familia will be completed.