Saturday, July 07, 2012

12 Days, 6 Cities - Barcelona

After Vienna, we were flying to Barcelona. We had booked a pretty cheap direct flight on Iberia...except Iberia rang me a fortnight before to say that our flight was cancelled. But we could take the same flight two days later or a take a flight on the same day via Madrid. I chose the Madrid option but of course this meant that we would be flying earlier and arriving later than originally planned. *sigh*
But I ate this sandwich in Madrid airport for lunch.

After we made it to the hotel and settled in, we walked around Diagonal, La Rambla de Catalunya, and Passeig de Gracia.


The weather made me feel like I was home! We even saw parrots!

Ma's first sangria...She loved it! I thought it was alright.

Antonio Gaudi's Casa Batllo!

The first floor windows that look like bones

And Casa Mila!

The next day, we went out to see THE Barcelona thing, La Sagrada Familia. I really love that this church has been under construction continuously since 1882. I'll admit, I always kinda thought that Gaudi was overrated but walking through the basilica, I was converted. And you might wonder, why is it taking over 130 years to build a church? Well, it's pretty damn impressive and I can believe it's been a bit of a puzzle on figuring out how to complete various aspects of construction.
Cranes at work!

Some of the unconventional facade decorations. 

The Passion Facade which retells the entire Easter story. 

The interior. It's breathtaking in person!


A model showing what the completed building would eventually look like.

Man at work! It was pretty amusing to be looking at something and then hear drilling.

The Nativity Facade

Some of the Gothic Revival details, which are admittedly overwhelmed by the Art Nouveau details.

The construction site office :D

Despite being impressed by the fact that this church didn't look like every other church, Ma and Pa got a bit "Can we leave now?" and we headed off to somewhere else I was really hanging out to seeing - The Seaside!
Looking up La Rambla...

and at the Columbus monument.

Oh god, that grey sky over the harbour made me want to cry!

Looking towards Montjuic. I'll visit you next time when I get more time!

We noticed that there was actually FISH in the harbour! I wouldn't eat them though, that water was pretty scungy. 

After lunch of pintxos and a crepe for dessert, we walked to la Barceloneta to see...
the beach!

Mmmm....the sky came out and me not wearing a swimsuit.

I got to wade around in the shallows...

but I really wanted to swim :(

After enjoying a drink by the seaside and enjoying the salty air, we headed back up La Rambla to La Boqueria for some foodie goodness!

We decided that Xavi would be a good source of fruit :P


Big tourist smiles! We so happy in Barcelona!

Ma and Pa were pretty tired after all the walking and the hot weather. We decided to try to and go to a restaurant near our hotel and with the help of TripAdvisor, decided to go to Maitea Taberna, a pintxos place near our hotel. A good sign - when I asked the hotel concierge to book us a table (just in case), he said it was a good restaurant! YEAH!!! And it was a good restaurant! All the photos are on Ma's camera and trust me, while it maybe wasn't up to La Cuchara, it was great and the Parentals really enjoyed it. They also really enjoyed the jug of sangria I ordered for them to drink. This got them pretty *happy* and made them (particularly Ma) overcome their shyness towards speaking to the locals in English. Our waiter was pretty amused and he said he looked forward to seeing them the next day for lunch!

Ma and Pa were actually pretty drunk (Pa said he wanted us to board a bus that would take us back to the beach right at that moment! and Ma said her vision was swirling), and I decided the best course of action was to get them back to the hotel and tuck them in. Unfortunately for me, it was still only around 10:30pm so I decided to go out and try to catch the last of that night's Euros match. 

And that's how I ended the night by drinking this gin and tonic while debating with three Spanish and one Italian waiters about who was going to win the Euros. 

Next stop - Madrid!

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