Barcelona in 48 hours
Staying in Barcelona for just 48 hours doesn’t leave much time for sightseeing….But I was lucky enough to be able to go and visit my family there during August and I prefer 48 hours than no hours. Barcelona is such a beautiful and historic city bordering the Mediterranean. I was able to stay pretty central so I only ever travelled a few stops on the train and metro and spent the rest of the time walking or running around.
Strolling around exploring on foot was fantastic and having the time to wonder at my own pace. The heat and humidity was intense but refreshing after a cold Australian winter. On the second day we ran what should have been about 15 minutes down to the beach, if I had been fitter! I was surprised to see how clean the pavements, beaches and streets were; leaves and rubbish were being swept up as we ran. Already at 9am there were lots of people on the beach, it was so warm and the sun was coming out from behind the clouds.
During my brief time in Barcelona, I was able to visit quite a few sights:
Glories: Here there is the new Les Glòries Shopping mall, almost completed. And there are so many modern buildings and renovations going on here on this side of the city and there’s the famous monument Torre Agbar; I’ll have to go back and learn more!
La Rambla: Very well known for its treelined pedestrianised walkway that starts at Plaça de Catalunya ending at the water’s edge at the Columbus Monument. There are also numerous shops along here to explore, the different quarters bordering and usually a wonderful atmosphere. It was just so devastating to learn of the attack on Thursday 17th August and being there a week later, there were so many memorials with candles, flowers and toys.
Arc de Triomf: Built in preparation for when Barcelona hosted the Universal Exhibition in 1888. It was the gateway to the fair held in the Parc de la Ciutadella. We went running through here and it’s a lovely spot to meander and rest.
Picasso museum: near Arc de Triomf but I didn’t go in here as I was a little short on time. However, having studied art at school, I really should have, next time! The gift shop was full of Picasso postcards, paintings, jewellery, plates and other artistic crafts.
Saint Mary of the Sea (Santa Maria del Mar): Located in the Ribera district and built in the 1300s, it is an amazing church in terms of architecture. It reminded me of Notre Dame in Paris.
La Pedrera/Casa Milà: The façade on this building is so unique. I could have spent hours staring at it. Built by architect Antoni Gaudí it is meant to resemble an open quarry and was built between 1906 and 1912. It is on the UNESCO World Heritage List. I didn’t make it to Parc Güell. I will have to next time!
Firebug: This is a cool modern bar on Passeig de Sant Joan near Arc de Triomf. Great atmosphere and cool lighting.
Secrets del Mediterrani: There is a store at the front but with a place to eat and drink at the back in the cool air con or out the front under the umbrellas. They have a wonderful selection of wines. If you want to try more wines that are not listed on the menu, you can choose a bottle of wine from the store for an extra €3 plus the standard cost for the glass which I think from memory was about €2.75. I had a wonderful glass of Cava, Marquès De La Concordia 2014. It was opened before us, wonderful! Just €2.75. Then we had an Albariño from Rias Baixas from winery La Trucha along with a plate of olives and toasted bread covered in tasty olive oil. Living in Perth and having to spend at least $12 on a glass of bubbly, it was so refreshing to be able to enjoy a glass for about $5!
La Foga: Serving delicious tapas noon and night. I couldn’t come to Spain and not have tapas!
Sandwichez: Sells tasty sandwiches and salads. A salad and a sandwich cost us less than 10 euros. Such quick service and quite a few people work remotely here.
I don’t live or visit a city much so it was a treat for me and of course so enjoyable having some family time.