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Strutting the Streets of Barcelona

Strutting the Streets of Barcelona

Ah, Barcelona. Before this trip, most of what I knew of Barcelona came from my extensive knowledge of The Cheetah Girls 2, which they don’t even have on Netflix there… The city definitely exceeded my expectations. The colors, streets, food, language, and company all made Barcelona one of my top visits this semester.

Our flight landed at about 5pm or so. While traveling is one of my favorite hobbies, it’s definitely exhausting to say the least. Plane rides somehow suck all the life out of me so the last thing I want to do is take an hour commute to some crummy hostel where not even the towels are complimentary. But you know me, anything to save a buck. When we got to the hostel, we settled down and knew right away our first destination had to be for some paella near La Rambla, a famous food market. I didn’t really know what this was, but paella and I got very acquainted over the next few days. Funny thing was, although we had two native Spanish speakers aboard, myself included, we were drastically misunderstood and brought one medium sized paella for all six of us to share. I guess those two bites were tasty? Being the Americans that we are, we ended up at KFC about an hour later.

After our makeshift dinner, we decided to get some drinks and explore the night life. We ended up at an Irish pub, indulging in some Women’s Passion (the cocktail of the day). When we realized the pub catered to an…older crowd…we attempted to find a livelier scene. To our dismay, we were told that the nightlife doesn’t truly come alive until after 1am. We hightailed it back to the hostel and crashed for the night.

On day two, we took a tour of the Gothic quarter and were able to walk the lovely streets just before it started to rain. Rain in Spain is something I can’t quite explain, as even the showers look graceful on the cobblestone streets. We stopped at a hole in the wall restaurant for some more paella and patatas bravas and croquettas, and ate till our bellies were full and our spirits were high. We went back to the hostel for a true siesta and woke up feeling truly refreshed. What’s a trip to Spain without a visit to the beach? We trekked the mile or two to the sandy refuge and basked in the sea salted air, feeling wind in our faces and giggling at Spanish men who tried to spit game at American tourists. That night we experienced a true Spanish club and danced the night away. 5am rolled around and tapped us on the shoulder which was our cue to get going.

We turned in for the night and woke up just in time the next day to make our visit to La Sagrada Familia. From the outside, the massive cathedral is a mix of muted colors with signs of construction clinging to the walls. We managed to prebook our tickets and found ourselves in the midst of a church that was decorated with the prettiest stained glass windows I’ve ever seen. The interior was bathed in reds and golds and greens and blues, accentuating the intricate details of the amazing architecture. The building itself was a force to be reckoned with, although I’d beware of the 15 euro entrance fee, as most of the structure is under construction and unavailable to the public.

After our visit we went back to La Rambla and found a fantastic flea market. We walked along the booths and found little treasures that went past a typical keychain souvenir. There was jewelry, hair wraps, clothes, shoes, and other trinkets that made for great keepsakes. After the flea market we went back to the hostel to regroup. A few of my friends and I bought tickets to the much-anticipated Barcelona soccer game, which we could not have been more excited about. We had a great tapa dinner and made our way to the stadium. My favorite thing about soccer culture is the unwavering support from the fans. With everyone decked out in the team’s gear, it’s quite hard not to get hyped. The game itself was amazing. Seeing Messi on the field is truly once-in-a-lifetime and I wouldn’t trade the experience of bouncing off the seats for a goal for anything.

Overall, Barcelona was a trip that was full of good company, great food, and unforgettable experiences. While it’s been recommended to me by many, it’s my turn to recommend it to all of you. And don’t forget to try the paella.



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