Monday, 18 April 2011

Barcelona WOW!

It is many years since we last visited Barcelona and I had completely forgotten what a fantastic city it is. We had a fabulous few days although it was tiring. We arrived on Friday, late afternoon, after taking the scenic route from France over the Pyrenees, there was hardly any snow to be seen after the recent spell of hot weather but the scenery was spectacular. We spent the first evening wandering along the Ramblas down to the sea. Unfortunately I didn't have my camera with me that evening so can't share with you the totally amazing indoor food market. It was visually stunning and the array of foodstuff put french markets in the shade, not easy to do!!! Saturday morning we went to see one of Gaudis masterpieces the Parc Guell which is on the Unesco list of World Heritage sites. WOW WOW WOW. Please have a look on Wikipedia as my photos do not do it justice. The afternoon was spent at the Olympic Stadium watching our local rugby team, Perpignan, beating Toulon in the Heineken cup quarter final. The atmosphere was electric with a sea of red and orange Catalan flags. Absolutely brilliant. The evening saw us back at the Ramblas where by a quirk of fate we found an Italian restaurant and had a very enjoyable meal. On Sunday we met up with some friends who were also in Barcelona for the Rugby. We had hoped to visit the Sagrada Familia, Gaudis Cathedral which was started in the 1920's and is famously still under construction. It is due for completion in 2025!!! However the queues where horrendous so that will have to be for another trip. Instead we went back to the sea and visited the Olympic village and watched people swimming in the sea. In between times we managed to enjoy the Cafe culture which is alive and well. It's a really busy city but somehow doesn't feel frenetic like London, the people seem very relaxed. The wide tree lined Boulevards give the impression of a light and airy city, despite the traffic. It helped that the weather was fantastic, mid 20's for the whole weekend. And the Integrated Transport system is first class, meaning that we were able to leave our car at the hotel and tour Barcelona using the clean fast and regular trains or metro system. We didn't try either the buses or the trams, maybe next time. We left Barcelona on Monday morning and returned along the coast road, stopping at La Jonquera for some shopping before crossing back into France. A thoroughly enjoyable weekend, I'm just sorry that my photos don't do justice to the city.

Thursday, 7 April 2011

Barcelona here we come!

We're off to Barcelona for a long weekend of Rugby and R&R, news and photos next week. YIPPEE