Euro Trip: Barcelona, Spain

April 1-4, 2017 | Our last stop in Spain was Barcelona, the Catalonian capital, where we enjoyed delicious food and a bunch of cool architecture.

On April 1st (my birthday!), we woke up early to catch the fast train from Madrid to Barcelona. Riding the train in Spain is truly delightful – the seats are spacious and the ride smooth. Just a few hours after embarking, we arrived in Sants Station.

Phase 1: Complete

Jenni secured our Airbnb lodging for this part of the trip, and it was a nice apartment only 3 minutes away from the most famous site in town, Sagrada Familia. We could see it from our apartment window!

Sagrada Familia – they’re hoping to finish it within a decade

We truly enjoyed our time in Barcelona. Nancy had planned a fantastic schedule of tours, and we capitalized on our free time, too. For lunch on the first day, we walked over to a fantastic burger place called Anauco (photos of Anauco are in the rotating slideshow up top). Those burgers were delicious!

The evening of the 1st, we found out that there was a water show at the Magic Fountain in Montjuïc, so we headed up there and were blown away by what we saw. During a 30-minute show, the fountain displayed colorful lights and various water spray arrangements, all choreographed to pop and classic music. Best surprise birthday celebration ever :)

We were in the splash zone, which made photography a bit difficult, but our pro photographers (Larry, Jenni, and Nancy) snapped a few winning shots, nonetheless.

The following morning, we awoke early again to be among the first people to enter Antoni Gaudí’s Parc Güell with a guided tour. We enjoyed learning more of the history behind the park, which, like many of Gaudí’s creations, has a bit of a Dr. Seuss-y feel. Vibrant colors and curved edges abound. The ceramic tile work is impressive!

A ceiling in Parc Güell
Looking east from the main lookout in Parc Güell

When the tour ended, we hustled over to another area of town to begin what became one of my favorite experiences of the trip – the Segway tour!

After a few minutes of learning how to operate the vehicles, we were off! Edgar, our local guide, explained a lot of Barcelona history as we cruised around Barcelona for 3-4 hours. We began by weaving in and out of small streets to see some Roman ruins, emerged to see the Columbus monument, and then made our way to the city’s boardwalk along the beach. The weather was ideal, and it was even a bit chilly given the breeze while we were moving.

The squad at the beach
An old fountain in town

On our third day in town, Sagrada Familia was our main destination. Once again Nancy had arranged a great tour that gave us early access to the facility, so we passed through the underground museum section and then entered the main building. The only word that comes to mind is “Wow!”

Nothing can stop him from getting the shot he wants!
Looking towards the ocean from one of Sagrada Familia’s towers

Given that our flight was late on the 4th, we had almost another complete day for sightseeing. During that last day, we visited both the Picasso Museum and the Miró museum, and before heading to the airport we actually also found what became one of our favorite restaurants, Flax & Kale. Such a delicious, healthy meal!

We could have happily stayed in town another few days, but luckily our time in Barcelona was action-packed and enjoyable. We departed Spain feeling satisfied and pumped to see even older history. Rome, here we come!