Earlier this year I visited Barcelona, also known as the City of Counts, or the City of Gaudi. Having visited briefly once when I was younger, it wasn’t actually one of my first choices for holiday destinations, but I am so glad my best friend and I decided to visit this beautiful city because we did so many things that I wouldn’t have done otherwise. We spent four days here and we both loved every second of it, so I thought I’d share what we got up to.
Day 1 –
First up, our hotel was stunning and is easily one of the best places I have ever stayed abroad. We stayed in H10 Port Vell which we fortunately managed to get a great price for, the staff were so helpful and the hotel as a whole was gorgeous and well situated.
We arrived at our hotel quite early so we had the whole of the first day to explore Barcelona and considering it was February, the weather was surprisingly warm too. For our first day we really wanted to visit the La Sagrada Familia and en route the Arc de Triomf. The walk there was 50 minutes, but it didn’t actually feel that long because it allowed us to get a proper feel of the city, plus we were so excited to just be there.
I am at a loss for words when it comes to describing the inside of La Sagrada Familia, it is spectacular. The photos do not do the beauty of this building justice, but they give you a little insight. The architecture and amount of detail in everything is astonishing, it’s no wonder it isn’t due completion for another 9 years. My best friend and I have already vowed to return when the building is completed to relive Barcelona again.
Next we made our way to Placa de Catalunya, home to plenty of shops, including a Sephora, and the obligatory visit to a Hard Rock Cafe before heading back to the hotel for dinner and a much needed early night after an extremely early start.
Day 2 –
For our second and third days we decided to utilise the touristy hop-on-hop-off buses. It is definitely more expensive to travel around the city using these buses, but they’re very convenient since they take you directly to the places you’re likely interested in seeing, plus we had a bus stop right outside our hotel. One thing I also love about these buses is that if you need to rest, you can just hop on until you feel ready to hop off again and at the same time you can still see the city.
We took one of these buses to Park Guell, and let me tell you right now, this was one of my favourite parts of the entire trip. It’s such a beautiful park to walk around and you can climb a hill to the top to get stunning views over Barcelona and it’s so peaceful and relaxing. There is also a Gaudi exhibition at the park, but unfortunately tickets were sold out when I went so we had to skip this, but otherwise the park is free to enter. If you are interested in seeing the Gaudi exhibition though, I definitely recommend arriving to the park early, or see if you can get tickets online.
It certainly was a bit of trek to get to the very top, and then to get down again as it is pretty steep, but the view was so worth it.
In the evening, we decided to visit this circus type show that had been pitched up near our hotel. I think it was aimed for a more younger audience, but it was quite fun and the performers were really good, even if it was all in Spanish, meaning I was struggling to understand everything, but it was still enjoyable nonetheless.
Day 3 –
Today we decided to see the Magic Fountain. Of course, we were seeing it in the day rather than at night when it is bound to be more exciting and magical, but unfortunately the dates we decided to go to Barcelona ended up just missing the Magic Fountain show by a week as the performance only takes place over the summer months.
I didn’t find this too bothersome though as I have seen the show before, in fact it’s one of the few things I clearly remember from my previous visit to Barcelona. Plus, it gives even more reason for my best friend and I to return upon the completion of La Sagrada Familia as I can’t let my best friend go without seeing the spectacular Magic Fountain show!
This photo above is one of my favourite views over Barcelona. The fountain is on, and it was taken from one of the highest possible points. Tip: don’t stop at just climbing up the steps to the museum – if you enter, it only costs 2€ for entry to the terrace at the top of the museum for the most incredible view.
For the rest of the day we explored the area closer to our hotel more, which included walking around Las Ramblas, the Gothic Quarter and a walk along the beach as we searched for dinner.
Day 4 –
It is always harder to wake up on the final morning knowing that you’ll be back home that evening. The good thing was though, that our flight was a later one, so we still had time to see more of Barcelona.
My best friend is a huge lover of animals, so for our last morning before we checked out of the hotel we visited the aquarium, a short walk from our hotel and after checking out we visited the chocolate museum. I didn’t take any photos in the aquarium, but I did take a few in the chocolate museum (for which your ticket is actually a chocolate bar, how cool is that?!).
The chocolate museum definitely isn’t a big user of time, maybe an hour max, but it was a lovely extra thing to add in before departing. We did actually have a little time to kill afterwards, so decided to head back to our hotel and have a cocktail on the rooftop terrace in the sun. It was a really lovely, chilled way to end our holiday before heading to the airport.
This visit to Barcelona has certainly turned it into one of my favourite cities. I had a fantastic time there and look forward to returning in the future.
Have you ever been to Barcelona? What did you enjoy most?
I’d love to hear about your adventures in Barcelona in the comments, and if you haven’t been I hope this post has encouraged you to look into going!