Barcelona

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“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” – Mark Twain

What a better place to spend the last two days of Eurovision than in Barcelona! We started off with a quick bus tour.  First five minute stop, a pier at the beach.

We then drove on top of a hill to catch a bird’s eye view of the coastal city.

Tapas were the obvious choice for dinner that night.  I can definitely get used to them.

Chicken skewers with soy sauce, goat cheese and tomato salad, and scallops with asparagus.  The best part about the food in Spain is it is mainly cooked in olive oil, unlike the rest of Europe where they use an entire stick of butter for everything.

Our hotel was conveniently located right near Las Ramblas, so we walked down to the market to check it out. Unfortunately it closed soon after we got there, but it’s still fun to see because I am so accustomed to going to grocery stores to buy anything in the U.S.  In Spain, everything is fresh and unprocessed.  I love it.

And for dessert…

I found lactose-free dark chocolate gelato! Pretty sure I was the happiest person alive at that moment.

The next day we had nothing planned for us. Most people from my trip decided to go to the beach, but having swam in the Mediterranean in Cannes only two days before, I wanted to go sight-seeing.

We spent the day checking out Antoni Gaudi’s famous architecture.  First stop, Park Guell.

It was well worth the 20 minute bus ride up the hill.

We found one of the few cafés open in Barcelona around 2:30 in the afternoon to grab some bocadillos (sandwiches). Spain is different from the U.S. in the fact that you can’t get food at all hours of the day.  The stores and restaurants close for a few hours every afternoon for the siesta. According to my professors, Spanish people don’t actually take naps during this time like they used to, but the stores are generally owned and operated by just a couple people, so they need some time to get lunch and run errands during the work day.

Next on tap, La Sagrada Familia. It has been under construction since 1882. Talk about taking on more than you can handle…

…but the time spent on this amazing building really shows.

I was in awe, to say the least.

We spent the rest of the afternoon walking down one of Barcelona’s main streets and checking out Gaudi’s two other famous buildings.

La Pedrera

La Casa Batlló

Barcelona is just brimming with unique, intricate, and beautiful buildings.

After resting our aching feet in the hotel a bit, we decided to head over to La Plaza España for a water and light show we had heard about.  It started raining when we were walking to get on the metro and we almost didn’t go.

So glad we decided to take our chances.

The water changed levels and directions, flowed every which way, lit up in vivid colors, and coincided with the melody of a Disney song.  It actually felt like Disney World, but better…because it was Barcelona.

It was my very last night of Eurovision.  The following night I would be moved into my host mother’s home in Madrid, no longer living out of a suitcase, sleeping in the same bed for more than two consecutive nights, and eating home cooked meals.  Although I was nervous, I was excited to finally get settled into my new home away from home.

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2 responses »

  1. Haha I also have photos of la pedrera on my facebook and went to guell! Also, I’m pretty sure i was topless on the beach you have a picture of… shame you didn’t get to stay there longer! We got to visit the market on las ramblas, it was amazing, so much FRESH food! I also have some pictures of that. Funny story, the day we went to the market was the first day of the festival of san juan, where everyone sets off firecrackers in the street. Someone set some off in the market, and all of the tourists started panicking, thinking they were gunshots! The store owners had to calm everyone down and tell them they were fireworks!

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