My friend was visiting from Canada and she wanted to see Spain so I booked two nights in Barcelona and 7 nights in Sitges (a separate review). I had been to Barcelona before but just on a day trip from one of the coastal resorts. I booked us into The Hotel Jazz which is a small boutique Hotel very near the centre of Barcelona. It is very near Las Ramblas which is the main restaurant/bar area. We had taken the Euro Bus from the airport for a few euros and it dropped us off right near the Hotel. The Hotel staff were very nice and very helpful, our room was very comfortable and best of all they had a rooftop bar and swimming pool which was ideal after a days sightseeing. From there you could look right out over the city.
As we only had 2 says we wanted to see as much as possible so as soon as we arrived we headed off down Las Ramblas looking at souvenirs and having the odd glass of Cava in the outdoor bars. We found the food and drink in Barcelona very cheap. Tapas and a bottle of Cava came to about 35 euros. In fact Cava was only 3 euros a glass wherever we went! The next day we took the ‘Barcelona City Tour’ sightseeing bus. A one day ticket was only 30 euros (a 2 day one would have been 40 euros). We jumped on and off this bus all day and we had two routes, the green route and the red route to choose from. The red route took us past all the sights plus FC Barcelona Football Stadium Camp Nou. Some of the sights we saw were the Placa D’Espanya, Placa Pius XII, the Olympic Stadium, the Gardens Miramar and the Arc de Triomphe (I wasn’t aware Spain had one..I thought the only one was in Paris!). The green route took us past, amongst others, the Cathedral, the Sagrada Familia and down to Barceloneta which is the beach area of Barcelona. It seems Barcelona has seven beaches and from what we saw these look very inviting with many bars and sea food restaurants.
If I were to go back (and I certainly intend to) I would spend more time at The Sagrada Familia. This is more than just a church. It has dizzying spires all decorated with intricate symbolic sculptures and it is Gaudi’s unfinished masterpiece. In fact Gaudi’s influence is everywhere in the City. Another great place to visit is Casa Mila, the apartment block he designed with it’s curving facade and bizarre rooftops.
Our quick visit to Barcelona just left us wanting more. It has beaches, shopping, wonderful sights to visit and an easy transport system. I will be back!