This post is about our three day trip to Barcelona. I think I have mentioned before, that I live in London however, I was born and grew up in Latvia. Some of my family is still there but my mum lives in England. Somehow every festive period I spent either with my boyfriend’s family in Scotland or in Riga, so my mum and I have a great tradition of going on a mini holiday at the beginning of the year, plus it is mum’s birthday in the middle of January. So far we have traveled to Paris, Rome, Athens, Porto, Lisbon and this year – Barcelona.
I looooove organising things. Everything. Especially travel itineraries. It gives a great pleasure to research, book, think of how to squeeze everything in a limited amount of time…I know, should have been working at a travel agent. Anyway.
This time we had 3 full days in Barcelona. I’ve been here once before, but it was about 8 years ago and I was a poor student visiting a good friend. So things were a bit different.
This time our plan was to visit as many cool places as possible. So this is our three day itinerary.
We got to Barcelona around 8pm on the previous night, so all we did, was walking to our airbnb and having some cava with local cheese – amazing!
Our first full day we started by visiting Sagrada Familia. I’ve booked the tickets in advance which saved us some time by not having to queue, I have also added a trip to one of the towers, which costed extra but the views from the top are great! I don’t think there is much point talking about Sagrada Familia for too much – you simply have to see it yourself!
After spending a good few hours at Sagrada Familia, we headed to Park Guell. It takes about 40 min to walk there and the walk is slightly uphill, but it was a beautiful day and in general I don’t like using public transport in new places as I love to see the real parts of the city. We stopped for a quick snack on our way too, but I will write a separate post about where we ate in Barcelona, so stay tuned for that. Park Guell is yet another place created by Antoio Gaudi and is definitely worth a visit. I have pre-booked our tickets which made life slightly easier.
The Rituels d’Orient Spa
After having lunch and our first sangria, we headed to the Rituels d’Orient Spa. I should had mentioned earlier, but on this day it was my mum’s actual birthday so my sister and I, booked my mum a spa visit (I was lucky enough to tag along). And it was amazing! We had one of the packages, a hammam experience and a full body massage with essential oils – amazing! Initially the plan was to go for a few drinks after this, but both were too relaxed so we ended up picking some nice bread and a bottle of wine, which we enjoyed on a roof terrace of our amazing apartment.
Private Walking Tour
As a little surprise for mum, I have booked a personal walking tour in Russian for our second day. It lasted over 3 hours and covered the majority of Historical Barcelona. And it was great! There were only two of us so it was very relaxed and we both could ask as many questions as we wanted. I do normally love the free walking tours but this time I went for a private one as treat and it totally payed off as my mum loved it!
Tour bus – Eastern Route
As this was my mum’s first visit to Barcelona, we decided to use open roof bus tours. There are two lines operating in winter and we did both in two days. It was ok. It was good to see places where we would never go by ourselves, but somehow we both felt that tour buses in different cities are slightly better. Also, here is a little tip – book them online and it is actually 10% cheaper than doing it in person. I’ve ended up booking tickets on my phone at a travel agent and saved us good 10 euros (wine money!).
By the time we finished with the bus it was around 5 pm so spent the rest of the night eating and drinking sangria! Which I will talk about in one of my next posts.
Tour bus – Western Route
After consuming a fare amount of Spanish wine the night before, we both were feeling a bit ropy in the morning so we decided to do the other line on the tour bus which took around 2 hours. It was very chilly that day so we just stayed on the bus the whole time. But again, it was pretty cool to see the Western part of the city.
As a little ‘pick me up’ after being on a bus for so long, we had some amazing hot chocolates. While enjoying our hot drinks we decided to visit another creation by Gaudi – Casa Batllo! Yet, again, book your tickets online! It is so much cheaper, I’ve booked ours on my phone while standing outside the museum and saved us money. Tickets are really pricey so we only visited one of his houses this time.
I’ve left my mum exploring Casa Batllo for a bit longer, and headed to the Picasso Museum – it was on my bucket list for a while! It is beautiful building. I would recommend visiting the museum if you are interested or curios about the artist, it focuses on a few of his works but doesn’t give you good basic knowledge about Pablo Picasso, so might not be that engaging if you are a novice to the modern art. My mum doesn’t like surrealism hence I went alone. I personally loved it! Also the book shop was great, it was an absolute challenge for me to walk away without purchasing anything.
And this was all we managed to do in our 3 days in Barcelona! The city is stunning and I wanted to head back the instant I got home to London. Our time there was quite relaxing and we did spent a fair amount of time eating and drinking, so the blog post about food will be up soon.
Now being able to reflect a bit, I think my highlights in Barcelona were – Sagrada Familia, the walking tour and the Picasso Museum. Have you been to Barcelona? What was your favourite part?
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