We had a lovely trip to Barcelona however we weren’t the only people who chose this city for an Easter break as the entire city was packed! There were queues around the corner for every Cathedral, Gaudi building and tourist bus but luckily there were enough restaurants for us to duck in to for some tapas and crowd avoidance!
By far my favourite building was the Sagrada Familia, a church which Gaudi originally designed however has continued to be built following his death thanks to anonymous donors and the funds from the admission tickets. It looks like something out of a fairytale and it amazed us that they are keeping true to the original design and continuing to build in the unique style (and yes, those are fruit at the top).
I learnt a few things on the trip including that a one star hotel isn’t that bad as long as you keep the curtains closed so you don’t look right into the run down building behind you, BBC weather lies as there wasn’t one day that was 16 and sunny, a 20 euro boat cruise of the harbour does NOT incule any sort of narration and paella tastes lovely when sitting overlookign swanky boats in the Mediterranean.
Not surprisingly I was very impressed with their Metro system as it was one of the most futuristic looking one I have had the pleasure of riding. First of all the notification board telling you when the next train was coming was so accurate that it told you how many minutes and seconds until the next train and it was dead on each time. Its waaaay better knowing that your train is coming in 4 minutes 23 seconds than just knowing its in 4 minutes!
Once you got on the train they had little maps inside showing all the stops but each stop you had been to was lit up and the next stop was blinking to show you that you were going in the right direction and find out where you were quite quickly. There was also a handy arrow that lit up telling you which side of the train the doors would open on so you wouldn’t be caught embarrassingly standing on the wrong side when the doors were opened. Finally and most excitingly, you could use your mobile on 75% of the lines!
This is a bit of a double edged sword as part (okay most) of me does enjoy a nice quiet ride into work while I tuck into my free paper free of annoying ring tones and obscenely loud conversations but the other bit of me likes the idea of being able to send and receive email and surf the web on the way in so I don’t miss a second of the outside world. Pretty sure though that there is little that will happen in the above ground world in the 34 minutes I spend under it that would warrant having to hear people rambling on about their plans for the day or organising with the wife who will pick up dinner.
Bottom line, Barcelona is lovely and definitely worth a visit.