Barcelona is my favorite city in the world that I’ve been to so far in my travels. I lived there for a summer during college and have been back a couple of times since. I love the laid-back, cosmopolitan atmosphere of the city and the nightlife is second to none. This past week, a friend asked for some recommendations for an upcoming trip to Barcelona so I thought I’d list out some of my favorite things to see and do in the city.
A good portion of Barcelona was designed by the famous architect Antoni Gaudi. One of my favorite Gaudi sites is Park Güell. The lizard mosaic at the entrance is one of the most recognized symbols of the city. The top of the park also provides one of the best views over the city and the ocean. You can see more about Park Güell here.
A Spectacular Fountain Show
Right off of the Espanya metro stop is the best fountain show I’ve ever seen. It takes place Thursday through Sunday nights and is well worth an hour of your time to see the vibrant colors and designs of the water.
Another Gaudi masterpiece, Sagrada Familia is probably the coolest site in Barcelona. It has three distinctly different designs and the third side is still under construction to this day. You can read more about Sagrada Familia here. The surrounding area also has lots of little cafés. I know this because when I lived in Barcelona for a summer, my apartment was only about half a block from where this picture was taken. What is still my favorite Sangria comes from a little café there called La Boulangerie, which was conveniently located directly across the street from my apartment. I quickly got to know the place well!
Nearing the end of my European Adventure, I caught a bus from Cadiz to Malaga, even though I didn’t really want to leave. I had to go to Malaga to catch a flight up to London, so I basically had a day to spend in the city. What do you do when you only have a day to spend in the city? Well it’s a beach town and also the birthplace of Pablo Picasso. First, you start out by going to the awesome Picasso Museum and walking around the center of the city.
Then of course, you go to the beach, which was conveniently located across the street from my hostel.
Then once you’ve had your fill of sun, sand, and sangria, you pack up and try to catch a bus to the airport so you don’t miss your flight. This was by far the toughest part of my day. My flight left around midnight that night and I just barely made it. I was relieved to make it on my flight, arrived at London Stansted around 2am, and fell asleep in a 24-hour coffee shop in the airport.
Pretty much my whole time spent in Spain can be summed up in these 4 words: tapas, beach, siesta, party. That was my experience in Spain in a nutshell, and Cadiz was no exception to that. Cadiz is a small beach town on a peninsula in the southwest corner of Spain. They have some of the nicest beaches I’ve been to, and one of my favorite hostels I stayed at was here. It was called Casa Caracol, and it was awesome! They had hammocks on the roof for a nice afternoon siesta, beach less than 5 minutes away, and I met a lot of cool people here. I guess this is why before coming to Cadiz I had only planned to stay a day or two and chill on the beach, but I ended up spending almost a week here! Here’s a couple pictures of the hostel. This first one is a doll in the hostel and everytime they have a costume party (about once a month) a article of clothing gets added to it. It’s pretty funny!
And the hammocks…good for a little siesta after a long afternoon at the beach.
Here’s the beach where I spent a most of time in Cadiz.
One afternoon when I got tired of laying on the beach (just kidding!) I walked around the city for a couple hours and took a few pictures here and there.
As I continued to explore Sevilla (in the evening as the sun started to set), I came across Plaza de Espana, one of the most impressive sites in the city.
That night, a guy at my hostel was making a huge batch of Paella for everyone. It was awesome! See what you think!
Walking down the river at sunset was really nice.