Wednesday, July 10, 2013

barcelona: architecture and whimsy

Bar1

For starters, we loved Barcelona. Absolutely loved it. I would recommend Barcelona to just about any traveler (experienced or not) because it is such a visitor friendly environment.

Bar3

Not only is the city packed full of life and color through its architecture and character but also through its people and the rich mixture of culture that can be found there.

Our first stop (as shown in the two pictures above) was exploring Cataluyna Square.

Bar5 Bar6

The next stops were the ever-so-popular and absolutely fabulous works of Gaudi. First up, the Casa Batllo. For background, prices and more info check out their website here: http://www.casabatllo.es/en/. It looks amazing in pictures but is even more amazing in person.

Bar7 Bar8 Bar9

Next, another work of Gaudi-- La Pedrera. We decided not to go up on the roof of this one do to time restraints but according to the reviews it's a must-see! Check out their website for more details: http://www.lapedrera.com/en/home

IMG_8038

IMG_8041Bar10

We enjoyed walking around, soaking up all the beautiful architecture, and I kinda of fell in love with this random owl.

Bar11

Now for one of the main reasons my husband was set on coming to Barcelona, The Church of the Sacred Family or Sagrada Familia.

For those of you who aren't familiar with the background and history of this building, it's quite impressive and very intense.

Bar13

It's designed by Antonio Gaudi who has now been deceased for almost 87 years. As you can see though, it has yet to be finished. Construction continues daily, and they are projected to complete it by 2026. Why so long? The entire building is inspired by the life and gospel of Jesus Christ--and as you can see in the following pictures the detail is quite remarkable.

Take a look at this page on their website and the view of the church from above: http://www.sagradafamilia.cat/sf-eng/docs_serveis/informacio.php

Bar14 Bar16 Bar17

The detail is spectacular. This is one of the front doors in the picture above and in the picture below, you can see the chapel inside.



Bar20

If you have a moment, take a second and watch this 60 minutes clip on Sagrada Familia. I promise, it's well worth your time & extremely educational. It will make you appreciate this beautiful piece of architecture so much more.

http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=50142539n

Bar21 Bar22

That detail is crazy, right? Check out their official website here: http://www.sagradafamilia.cat/sf-eng/index.php

Bar24

Robert had been infatuated with this place ever since he watched the full 60-minute special. This was a dream come true for him.

Bar26

The next day we headed up to Park Guell. It was an easy trip--their subway system is excellent! Definitely don't pay the extra money to cab around, just use the underground system--we had no problems with it. It will drop you off at the base, and then they actually have escalators that will take you a good chunk of the way up the hill to the park.

Bar27

It was dreamy. The view was unbeatable.

Bar29

The park is big--so I'd plan on spending at least a whole afternoon there.

We honestly could not get a good picture for the life of us at this lookout. There were just too many people and not enough space. That's the toughest part about travelling as a couple--if you want to take pictures together it takes a lot of awkward waiting around for the right person and then asking them...and then hoping they know how to use a Cannon or iPhone. We usually try to look for younger hipster looking couples to take our pic. We didn't have much luck in Barcelona.

Bar30 Bar32

There are lots of talented street performers (and weird ones as well)

Bar33

This one was my favorite. I can't resist the sound of a violin.

Bar34 Bar38

I love this man. He's made my life one constant adventure. Single girls, marry a man that loves to travel! There is nothing more rewarding, humbling and educational then experiencing the many corners of the world with someone you love.

Bar39

Toe-touch in Park Guell, obviously.

Bar40

Just having one of those "I can't believe I'm here..." moments.

You can see more on their website here: http://www.parkguell.es/en/portada

Bar42

Next up, we explored Las Ramblas. We actually stayed in a hotel right on it--so we got a good amount of time on this lively street. It's full of shops, street vendors and lots of shopping.

We decided to have dinner at their famous La Boqueria. Fresh everything (including chocolates) and it was delicious.

Bar43 Bar45

My husband is obsessed with gummy candy. He was pretty stoked about this.

Get more details here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/La_Boqueria

gelato

Oh, and of course you can always count on me to find the nearest Gelato truck.

Bar47

We spend the next evening exploring the Gothic Quarter. Found a quaint little place to eat called Cera 23. It's a must if you like seafood. And you need to try their Volcano Rice. It was one of the most unique meals I've ever had. It was actually delicious, but the texture of some of the seafood mixed in was a little rough at times. Check out their webste: http://www.cera23.com/

Bar48 

A very old man whom my husband spoke to in Spanish took this picture. Not bad, eh? We were definitely surprised.  

Bar50

The Gothic Quarter was gorgeous. Probably one of my favorite spots to walk around.

Bar51

Next we went down to the Olympic Port. It was quiet and a bit chilly but a nice get-a-way from the bustle of Las Ramblas.

Bar52

Bar53

It's truly a beautiful place!

Mount Tibidabo

This picture I'm particularly fond of because my good friends Erin, Mark and myself are standing at the top of Mount Tibidabo...and for those of you that aren't Friends fans like we are, just take a minute to enjoy: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HguzO9KmHBU


Below are a few more pictures of some of the different architecture that I'm obsessed with:

Bar54


Edit 4

I don't think there was anything we didn't like about Barcelona. It was such a dream.

I recommend it to both experienced and inexperienced travelers because it really is an easy place to get around, with great food options, and amazing sites to see! And for those of you that missed it check out my early blog post on the Coast of Brava--which was where we went right after spending a few days in Barcelona. It was one of my favorite places EVER.

Have any of y'all been to Barcelona? Let me know if you have anything to add. We definitely didn't get to do everything we would have liked to do and would love any tips for the next time we're able to go back!

P.S. I'm just now getting on-board the Bloglovin' train. So if you use it please follow me! And if you don't, I just started using it and LOVE its simplicity and design. You totally should get on-board ;) http://www.bloglovin.com/en/blog/4884983

8 comments:

  1. Looks like you had a great time and got some amazing pics! I loved Barcelona too--it's such an amazing city. My thoughts:

    We went to Park Guell at sunrise--we had the place to ourselves. Plus the lighting for photos was *amazing*.

    Did you have chocolate con churros for breakfast while you were there? Kind of a thick dipping chocolate with miniature churros. We tried a couple places in Barcelona that we loved. If you didn't have any during your time in Spain, it's worth going back for. ;)

    For anyone thinking about the aquarium, I don't think it's worth it. It has a really cool underwater walkway where you can look up at the fish and sharks swimming above you (you're actually in a tunnel that goes through the tank). But the rest of the aquarium needs some work. We thought we could have better spent our time and €17 admission fee elsewhere.

    Another great destination was the Teleferico de Montjuïc. It's a cable car ride that takes you to the top of Montjuïc Hill. There you can explore the castle, as well as enjoy panoramic views of the city. It's fun to do towards the end of your trip when you can try to identify all the different parts of the city that you visited.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Gorgeous pictures. Your husband is Juan lucky guy... ;)

    ReplyDelete
  3. Park Guell at sunrise! Oh man, I bet that was unreal. And no, I didn't have the chocolate con churros and that makes me very sad! I will put that down on our list for next time. They sound delicious.

    Thanks for the tips! I'm definitely going to write those down for next time!

    ReplyDelete
  4. I love Spain! I need to go to Barcelona...thanks for all these tips! You two are darling, and I agree about finding a man who loves to travel! Xo

    ReplyDelete
  5. Wow,amazing pictures...I really like your blog.^^
    Maybe follow each other on bloglovin?
    Let me know follow you then back.
    Lovely greets Nessa

    ReplyDelete
  6. Great photos! My husband and I are going to Barcelona too in October, we're newlyweds and quite excited for this trip! :-)

    ReplyDelete
  7. Great photos! My bedmate and I are traveling to Barcelona too in October, we're brace and absolutely aflame for this trip! :-)
    can you provide me some more ideas?Barcelona Spain Travel Guide

    ReplyDelete
  8. Thanks for your great post. Love it all, the pictures as well as the writing and of course the subject "trip in France and Italy" !!!
    honeymoon in rome

    ReplyDelete