Barcelona, SPAIN – holds a special place in my corazón. Not only is it located in my favorite country (ole!) but it is also the city where Dmitriy and I became engaged. No matter what you’re looking to discover, Barcelona has something for everyone.
Our stay – 5 days/4 nights
Vinitus -(so good we were back twice!)
Neighborhood = Eixample
- Tortilla patata con cebolla (tortilla española with onion)
- Chocos de sepia (HUGE lightly breaded calamari. Way better than anything you’ve tasted here in the U.S.)
- Filete de ternera (beef filet)
- Brocheta de langostino (toasted bread known as a montadito with a shrimp on top)
Neighborhood = Eixample
- Pan con tomate (tomato bread)
- Croquetas de jamon (ham croquettes)
- Lomo Iberico de bellota (Iberian Loin – these pigs only eat acorns which makes it the most superior ham)
- Pimientos de padron (Padron peppers)
Great for breakfast or grabbing a snack for the walk to the Sagrada Familia
I loved their sandwiches and sweets, especially their Boldu Man donut!
Neighborhood = El Born
Fine Dining for a date night $$$
We did the 6 course tasting menu for our engagement celebration dinner – amazing!
Neighborhood = Gothic Quarter
Grab what you want to eat and count the toothpicks to pay – pretty cool!
Neighborhood = El Born
Order the larger “Porras” they are larger and more doughy! Make sure to order the chocolate for dipping.
Cortado – shot of espresso with a scoop of foam = typical Spanish coffee
Typically, Churros are eaten very late at night or early in the morning. This place closes at 9PM so make sure to plan accordingly.
Beer: A.K. Dam (local beer not exported to US), Mahou, Estrella Dam, Cruz Campo (Sevilla)
Wine: House reds or “vino tinto de la casa” are usually Rioja and Tempranillo- Ribera del Duero (my absolute favorite) and will run you less than 2 euro…cheaper than water!
If you are visiting in the summer, you must try a Tinto de Verano. This summer spritzer is red wine with Lemon Fanta (not sold in the U.S.)
MUST SEE SITES:
Sagrada Familia – Gaudi..still under construction. I’ve seen it 3 times and it’s remarkable to see their progress after all these years. Spend the extra €14 to climb the tower for panoramic views from the top. This ticket also includes access to the museum at the bottom which highlights Gaudi’s life and work. Note: tickets are available by scheduled time slots with designated entrance times. Arrive early to buy tickets in case you need to return later.
Fun fact: estimated completion date is 2026 or 2028, more than 140 years after it was started.
La Pedrera/Casa Mila – Gaudi designed apartment <where people still live to this day> – GREAT terrace view of the city. Check out the balconies from the street to see how Barcelona’s environment and proximity to the sea influenced Gaudi’s design. Not to be missed!
La Boqueria – fresh market off La Rambla – you can sit down for a nice snack with the locals
Camp Nou – Goes without saying, if you are a futbol fanatic , this is the place for you.
Park Guell – Gaudi’s amazing mosaic outdoor park. Well worth the hike up Carmel Hill to see the views of Barcelona…tennis shoes recommended. We prefer to visit the Sagrada Familia first and then metro over to Park Guell since they are located further away from the city center.
Palau de la Musica Catalana – by guided tour only! A music concert venue with incredible architecture. Not to be missed if you are visiting for 4-5 days
Barceloneta – grab some beer, bread, jamon, and head to the beach! Make your way further down from the marina away from tourists. You’ll find a more local beach. Beware of pick pocketers near the marina.
Piscasso Museum – my favorite museum of all time. Free entrance first Sunday of each month.
Casa Batllo – personally I haven’t visited, but it’s across from La Pedrera. Another work of Gaudi – can be admired from the street.
Passeig de Gracia – shopping central!
Nightclub – arrive after 2am to experience the true Barcelona scene
Neighborhood = Barceloneta (right off the beach)
Shot bar with over 100 selections. Go here for a fun pregame around midnight. 3 locations in BCN.
Plaza Real – nice to have a drink and people watch. However, I wouldn’t recommend dining there as it is off La Rambla and full of tourists
Praca del Rei – inside Gothic Quarter, nice to visit while visiting the Cathedral
Take the Blue Bus from the Airport to Plaza Catalunya and usually you can grab a metro or walk to your hotel/AirBnb. It will run you about 5E per person and a short ride to the city center.
T1 & T2 – lookout for the signs. Purchase tickets with the driver as you board so make sure to have smaller bills less than 20E.
Avoid eating on La Rambla – poor quality of food and major pick pocketers
“Que hace rato está mi corazón
Latiendo por ti, latiendo por ti”