It was the best birthday present ever!

Not only that, but also the best holiday either Nog or I have ever had. We got home last night about 12.30 am, totally exhausted and footsore but also very very happy.

We took tons of photos … the Barcelona albums are still under construction and will be ‘unlocked’ as soon as they have been edited and organised.

This is a recap of our fabulous long weekend …

Friday January 12th

  • arrived in Barcelona 1.30pm, checked into hotel
  • lunch in Gothic quarter (braised endive, salmon in caper sauce…)
  • long walk along Las Ramblas
  • visit to amazing market and Plaza Real (discovered by accident!)
  • metro to Plaza de España to see the Magic Fountains at 7pm – WOW!!!
  • quick stop at Corte Inglés to pick up snacky stuff
  • back at hotel around 10pm; slipped into fluffy robes, drank f_bubbly.gif and had a picnic of fresh bread, caña de lomo and cheese

Saturday January 13th

  • brekky in hotel about 8.45 – very nice selection of just about everything
  • took the metro up to Sagrada Familia
  • walked back along the Diagonal and the Paseo de Gracia
  • tried to get into La Pedrera – was told it was closed until Monday
  • up to the rooftop of the Majestic Hotel where we paid 12 fucking euros for 2 beers! In plastic cups!!! Amazing view though…
  • visit to Gaudí’s Casa Batlló … a breathtaking, awe-inspiring experience.
  • lunch at the Hard Rock Cafe – just had to do it as neither of us had ever done it before. The food was surprisingly good.
  • foot massages and siesta back at hotel
  • wandered around getting lost in the Gothic quarter at night … it was quite fun. I bought a prezzie for our cat-sitter Maria del Mar and Nog bought me a beautiful bracelet
  • back to the hotel for rioja and snacks, including Syrian pastries (a variation of the arabic ones we get in Sevilla).

Sunday January 14th

  • brekky at the hotel, wished the coffee was better
  • walk through El Raval to the waterfront (found a VERY LARGE cat)
  • visit to the Aquarium
  • wandered around the Ribera and then went to the Picasso Museum
  • found amazing pizza restaurant – great food and wonderful ‘ambientation’
  • stroll back to hotel along Las Ramblas
  • rested tired feet at hotel whilst drinking rioja and watching a very interesting National Geographic documentary all about Tasmanian Devils
  • evening stroll on the Gran Via … stopped for a tapa and then went back to the hotel for more rioja and left-over pizza

Monday January 15th

  • last brekky at the hotel
  • packed up and left bags at reception to pick up in the evening
  • took bus up to Parc Güell – spent about two hours there. Could have spent much longer but time was running out
  • back down to the Paseo de Gracia to see La Pedrera
  • went to nearby Thai restaurant for lunch f_wow.gif
  • it was closed! f_wah.gif
  • next door there happened to be an incredible Argentinian restaurant f_drool.gif
  • remembered we hadn’t yet seen the beach … turned out we needn’t have bothered
  • back to hotel along Las Ramblas – picked up a couple of take-away falafels to eat at the airport since our flight left at 9.45 pm (and we didn’t want to have to eat airport food)
  • finally back home in Sevilla around 12.30 am and after spending rather a lot of ‘quality cuddling time’ with the cats we finally crashed around 2 am

It really was the best holiday ever. For both of us the most amazing experience was visiting Gaudí’s Casa Batllo – I’m sure my photos won’t do it justice. We passed it last night when we were on the bus going to the airport and it looked even more magical, lit up both inside and out. I wished we’d had more time to also visit it properly at night.

Other highlights included visiting the other Gaudí sites. But some of our best times were when we were just wandering around half-lost and then coming across a pretty square or interesting street, etc. Honestly, there were at least a hundred other photos I didn’t take … simply because we were just too busy enjoying the moment .