EUROPE, HOTEL REVIEW, SIGHTSEEING

Barcelona : Part 1

Barcelona is my favorite city in all of Europe! If I had to move away from the US, I would probably end up there. The weather is fantastic, the people are nice, there’s a laid-back vibe, they drink wine with every meal and the food is incredible… What more could you ask for? Barcelona feels like home. I’m sure it helps that I speak fluent Spanish, but for me, this city is perfection.

Last March we visited for the first time, spending 4-days there for our anniversary. There are direct flights from Miami to Barcelona so planning a quick trip to Spain is very doable.

 

DSC03121On the way to Barcelona

 

DSC03128Dinner on the flight

DAY 1

We landed in Barcelona early in the morning, but since we had slept most of the 9-hour flight, we were ready to start sight seeing. We stopped by our hotel to drop off our bags and freshen up, then started walking around the nearby neighborhood. We visited the Catedral de Barcelona, the Basilica de Santa Maria del Mar, the Arc de Triomf and Parc Ciutadella.

 

IMG_9506Inside Basilica de Santa Maria del Mar

 

stitch churchInside Basilica de Santa Maria del Mar

 

IMG_9525Catedral de Barcelona

 

stitch cathedralRoaming around near the Catedral de Barcelona

 

IMG_9583Arc de Triomf

 

IMG_9590Giant bubbles in Parc Ciutadella

 

IMG_9597Taking a break in Parc Ciutadella

 

We stopped for some tapas and wine, then headed to the Gothic Quarter (known as the Barri Gotic). The Barri Gotic is a really charming little neighborhood, which was the center of the old city. We roamed around for a bit and then stopped at its famous museum, the Picasso Museum (known as Museu Picasso).

 

IMG_4549 2Museu Picasso

 

Upon our return, our room was finally ready. We stayed at the Hotel Arts in Barceloneta, which is located right on the beach. It’s a trendy hotel with great amenities and beautiful views, however, it is not centrally located for sight seeing. We chose the beach and the views over being centrally located.

 

IMG_9612-1Front entrance of the Hotel Arts

 

IMG_9476View from our room

 

IMG_9482Our room at the Hotel Arts

 

IMG_9485Ocean view from our room

 

IMG_9486City view from our room

 

We decided to stay in our hotel for dinner and checked out Arola. It’s a trendy restaurant that reinvented traditional tapas… think tapas fusion. Everything we ate was delicious. It was not cheap, but we had a great meal.

 

IMG_4560Tapas Fusion at Arola

 

DSC03145Dinner at Arola in the Hotel Arts

 

 

DAY 2

We had a quick breakfast in our hotel and then headed out for a long walk in Barceloneta. Barceloneta is the beach part of the city with a long boardwalk and plenty of restaurants. It was March, so it was too cold to actually enjoy the beach (being from Miami, anything under 80 degrees feels cold to me), but we still got to enjoy the neighborhood.

 

IMG_9627Barceloneta

 

IMG_9631Barceloneta with the W Hotel in the distance

 

IMG_9739Barceloneta

 

We walked down the boardwalk, all the way to to the Teleferic, a cable car that takes you up to Montjuic. The Teleferic has 360 degree views overlooking the city, the beach and the marina full of mega-yachts.

 

IMG_9653View of the beach from the Teleferic

 

IMG_9657View of the mega-yachts and the W Hotel from the Teleferic

 

IMG_9661View of the marina from the Teleferic

 

IMG_9671
The Mirador de Colom (Christoper Columbus Monument) from the Teleferic

 

The views from the Teleferic were incredible, but once we made it to the top it was even more beautiful. Montjuic is known for its sweeping panoramic views of Barcelona.  

 

IMG_9678Overlooking Barcelona from Montjuic

 

IMG_9693With my better half on Montjuic

 

IMG_9694Enjoying the incredible views from Montjuic

 

We decided to continue enjoying the views from Montjuic and stopped at Restaurante Martinez. Pan con tomate, a bottle of white wine and views of the beach makes for the perfect afternoon with my hubby.

 

IMG_9712View of the Teleferic from Restaurante Martinez

 

IMG_9715A bottle of wine with an incredible view from Restaurante Martinez

 

IMG_4586 2Restaurante Martinez

 

After riding back down on the Teleferic, we got on the Metro (they have a great Metro system) and head towards the famous Parc Güell. It’s an uphill walk from the nearest Metro station to the park, so if you’re not in the mood for a workout, I suggest taking a taxi instead.

 

IMG_9769View of the city from Parc Güell

 

IMG_9777The Colonnaded Footpath in Parc Güell

 

IMG_9786Another one of Colonnaded Footpath in Parc Güell

 

The works by Antoni Guadí in Parc Güell were absolutely beautiful, however, my favorites were the gingerbread house inspired buildings at the entrance.

 

IMG_9821The gingerbread house inspired building by Gaudí

 

IMG_9826-1The other gingerbread house inspired building by Gaudí

 

From there we headed to Botafumeiro for a late lunch. It’s a fantastic seafood restaurant that we really enjoyed and I highly recommend.

 

DSC03148Late lunch at Botafumeiro

 

After lunch we headed back to our hotel to relax and enjoy the views until dinnertime.

 

IMG_0043-1Enjoying the view from our room at the Hotel Arts

 

That night we headed out to enjoy some Barcelona nightlife. We had late dinner reservations at Carpe Diem Lounge Club (more commonly known as CDLC), which was right by our hotel. It’s a dinner party that turns into a nightclub. It wasn’t my favorite meal, but it was a fun night out in Barcelona.

 

DSC03149Dinner and a bottle of champagne at CDLC

 

Check back next week for the second half of our Barcelona trip….

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9 Comments

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  • Reply Courtney April 15, 2019 at 8:31 pm

    Awesome post. I am so excited for my upcoming trip. Thanks for sharing your experience.

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