A Travellerspoint blog

Spain

Around the World in 20 days - fourth stop Spain

Barcelona and Montserrat

semi-overcast

Only a 2 hour flight from Malta we arrived in Barcelona at lunch time and so had time to familiarise ourselves with the city at our leisure instead of a guided tour for the rest of the afternoon. We had a wander around the area surrounding our hotel which happened to include the famous Gaudi building Casa Batllo.
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We had dinner in the hotel that night and a relatively early night ready for the next day's adventures.

We began the morning with a Flamenco lesson which was great fun and a good work out to make up for the fact that we were about to go and have churros and hot chocolate in the old town. We walked through gorgeous narrow lanes full of galleries, cafes and boutique shops.
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Today we were given cash to eat lunch wherever we liked, so on the recommendation of a friend, we chose to eat at Els 4Gats which is famous for being the meeting place for famous artists, such as Picasso, through the modernist era. We had a delicious tapas lunch before meeting up with the group for our afternoon tour.

Our first stop was La Sagrada Familia, Barcelona's most famous building which is still under construction despite being started in 1882! Work is expected to finish in 2026. The Basilica tells the story of Jesus through its' intricate facades. It is a very striking building with an obvious change in architecture between the old and new.
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Despite having pre-purchased tickets the wait time to get in was painfully long. But it was when we entered the building that I really had my breath taken away - the wait was worth it! The stained glass windows, even on the overcast day that it was, cast the most beautiful colours over the interior of the building. It is just stunning.
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Next we headed to see Casa Batllo's interior on a guided tour. What an amazing and unique building!
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That night we had another amazing gala dinner, this time held in the beautiful Chamber of Commerce. More fantastic food and our entertainment for the night was a trio of Flamenco dancers which showed us how it really should be done!
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We left Barcelona the next morning for a trip to Montserrat, a beautiful place in the mountains.
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Montserrat has had a Benedictine community there for around 1000 years so we made a visit to the monastery.
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Montserrat is also a famous wine region so we visited Codonui, the oldest producer of cava. We had a guided tour of the cellars including a train ride through some of the 20 miles of hand dug cellars.
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We had a huge, late lunch before making the journey back to Barcelona. We were so full we couldn't face eating dinner so just headed out for a few drinks with some of the other passengers from the trip.

The next morning we were back to the airport for the next leg of our adventure. Once again the crew's outfits did not disappoint!
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Next stop, Cartegena, Colombia....

Posted by bumblebum 19:18 Archived in Spain Comments (0)

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