As you may have realised from my recent Instagram & Twitter updates I visited Europe lately. First stop on the mini winter adventure was Barcelona! As always I've put together a post on the many photos I took (it was definitely one of my favourite places for photography so far; the architecture!) At the bottom of the post I've included some tips and must do's based on my experience. Prepare for photo overload...
I hope you made it to the bottom of the post, if you've been reading my blog for a while you'll know my travel posts are rather photo heavy (understatement of the century). We were in Europe for 10 days, 4 of which we spent in Barcelona before we moved on to Berlin and then Brussels (blog posts on those to come).
Barcelona is definitely a city that has stole my heart. It reminds me of Paris a lot and if you know me well I LOVE paris, it reminds me of a mix of Paris and London with it's own unique Spanish feel. I had no idea what it would be like at Christmas, but I have to say after going in December I'm not sure I would go any other time; it was perfect. I'm not a huge fan of extremely hot weather, especially when we have a jam packed itinerary of things to see and do, the heat makes it hard to sight see all day, that's why I think December was perfect for us, the weather was 'itinerary perfect'; around 15-20 degrees each day with blue skies, great for photography and warm enough to wear no jacket but not warm enough to melt your makeup!
Another main thing that attracted us to Europe at this time of year was the Christmas markets, we visited quite a few of the markets around Barcelona and did lots of shopping. The markets had everything you could imagine from Christmas trees to logs for the fire. The shops of Barcelona also had a lot to offer, this is the part that reminded me of London, there was some of my favorites shops like Zara Home, H&M & of course Sephora (for any beauty lovers going to Barca the Sephora is HUGE!) The restaurants of Barcelona were so good, such a variety as well you could find a chic and swanky pizza restaurant on the same street as traditional tapas restaurants that had been there for over 75 years. Barcelona really has something for everyone.
As always I've complied a list of what I think are must do's and other interesting things to see in Barcelona...
- Sagrada Familia. This made me cry (I'm not religious but the building itself was so over whelming!) It was such an amazing thing to see, kind of a once in a lifetime thing. The architecture is stunning!
- Mercat De La Boqueria. For foodies this is a must, selling everything from fresh smoothies to sea food (great for photography lovers too!)
- Parc Guell. Another one of Gaudi's amazing masterpieces.
- La Rambla. La Rambla is the main shopping and restaurant street in the city, very similar to that of Champs Elysees.
- Barcolaneta Beach. This was one of the most beautiful beaches I've ever visited, very surreal as it's just on the outskirts of the city.
- Christmas Markets. Obviously this tip only applies if you visit between November & January, our favourite was Feliz Santa Lucia.
- La Rambla pharmacies. As you may have heard me mention in my latest YouTube video the pharmacies in Europe are insane, especially in Barcelona. If you're a beauty lover they're great for picking up products you can't get in the UK e.g. Bioderma etc.
- Maka Maka Restaurant & Beach Bar. If you're a gourmet burger enthusiast then this is definitely one for you, right next to the beach as well; perfect!
- Don't forget your student card. A lot of attractions like The Sagrada Familia & Parc Guell offer discounted tickets for students and adults under the age of 25.
- Be careful at night. I suppose this tip applies to most major cities but one night we were out around 00:15 on our way back from a bar and we were asked numerous times on La Rambla if we wanted 'Coffee Shop' which we later found out was code for drugs!
- Take the subway. Again I know all large cities tend to have an underground/subway system but I've had my fair few experiences of these in different cities and Barcelona's is really good! There's a guranteed subway stop next to all major attractions and they run every minute just like the London Underground. Definitely the quickest and cheapest way to get around in the city.
I did vlog our trip so the travel vlogs will be on my YouTube channel ASAP. The blog posts on Berlin and Brussels are also on there way!
I hope you enjoyed reading this post and it was of some use if you're planning a trip Barcelona. Have you been to Barcelona? If so are there any places that you'd recommend visiting that I missed?