Hello everyone! I hope you’re all well.
I haven’t written a travel post in a while, so I thought I’d crack on with another. These are probably my favourite type of posts to write, as they give me a chance to browse old photos and look back on some of my favourite memories!
I went to Barcelona last February as a surprise for my 18th Birthday – my boyfriend Jake planned it all secretly for ages, and it was also our first holiday together, so it will always hold some very special memories!
Now, of course, a surprise trip to Barcelona was absolutely incredible and oh-so exciting. However, we were embarking on our adventure the morning after my 18th birthday party… hmm. Interesting.
Let’s just say, at my party, there was a free bar. We all know this means danger. And, after consuming about 12 different varieties of alcohol, I strangely wasn’t fully functional.
The morning after, we had to get up at around 10am… not too bad at all, really. But, bad if the night before you’ve consumed enough jäger to supply your entire city.
I woke up feeling surprisingly okay; young, naive and unaware of what was to come. Jake, however, wasn’t feeling so great and was looking rather green. But, as the day went on, our roles switched slightly: Jake got better and better… I got worse, worse, and a little bit worse.
Essentially, by the time we had hopped off the plane and got into a taxi, I was in serious trouble. I spent the entire taxi journey with my scarf wrapped round my mouth, profusely sweating, secretly planning in my head where I was going to chunder if the dreaded moment arrived. It wasn’t fun.
As you can imagine, I clambered into bed the second we arrived at the hotel and spent the entire evening lying down, dramatically dousing myself in cold water with an emergency bin by my side whilst gagging at the smell of Jake’s room service pizza. Our first night in beautiful Barcelona wasn’t exactly glamorous, but it was definitely made up for by the rest of our time there!
By this time, Jake was somehow feeling as fresh as a daisy and I was feeling like a diseased rat. Bless him, he had also ordered a bottle of bubbly to be waiting in our room for us, however there was absolutely no way that was passing my lips that night without it making a short return.
More positively, our hotel was brilliant and in a nice, quiet location but still conveniently close to the city centre. We stayed in Hotel 4, and I’d thoroughly recommend it. The rooms were gorgeous, as were the bathrooms, and the staff were all friendly and welcoming.
After being resurrected the next morning, we had a big day of activities planned. After eating some breakfast, we walked about 20 minutes to Barcelona Zoo.
We also paid a visit to Parc de la Ciutadella, which was one of the most beautiful, peaceful places I’ve ever been, especially with the bright blue skies and lovely mild weather. The water fountains and gold statues were stunning.
That evening, to make up for the previous night spent perishing in bed, we went to an absolutely gorgeous, luxurious restaurant, 1881. It was situated above a museum (on the rooftops) which you had to walk through to get to the restaurant – cool and unique if you ask me. It was slap bang in the harbour, and we had a lovely view whilst *struggling* to stomach some pre-dinner wine.
I absolutely struggled to drink anything alcoholic on this holiday – I’d just have a few sips and couldn’t face any more. My 18th Birthday definitely wiped me out for this break!
After an amazing meal of paella, we headed back to the hotel bar. We ordered vodka & orange, but, watching in disbelief, saw that the barman literally poured 3/4 vodka and a drop of orange juice. I was feeling queasy just watching – I merely dipped the tip of my tongue in and decided it was time for bed. No thank you, good night.
The next day was a busy day of sightseeing. We visited several museums…
The Museu de la Xocolata (Chocolate museum) was really unusual and wonderful – there was so much art and loads of sculptures which you never would have guessed was made solely with chocolate! They also printed your ticket on a chocolate bar, which was a nice, novelty touch.
The city was filled with tonnes of cool architecture and monuments.
Another really cool place we visited was Park Güell. We got tickets for the open-top tourist bus for the day, which was quite expensive but definitely worth getting around for. We sat at the top in the warm sunshine, unaware of the looming cloudy forecast; by the time we were on our way back to the hotel, it was windy, freezing cold and we were huddled at the back of the bus in our hoodies praying for the bus driver to start speeding.
But, despite that, the tourist bus was very helpful as it stopped at every single attraction you might want to see. Park Güell is a public park with fantastic views of the city and lots of cool artwork.
Obviously, we went in February so the weather wasn’t on point – despite getting our fix of sun and blue skies, we did also get a fair share of clouds (luckily no rain.) I’d really love to go back to Barcelona in the summer – you’d get a perfect mix of a city break as well as a relaxing beach holiday. The long stretched beaches in Barcelona were gorgeous, sandy and spacious.
As for food (the most important thing, let’s be real) there was a multitude of restaurants, cafe’s and bars in Barcelona. We had some really delicious meals there, and there was just endless choice. A great area to find a place to eat would be Placa Reial, a square near La Rambla in the city centre with tonnes and tonnes of options.
Note the untouched glass of rosé… drinking was just not happening for me on this holiday.
I really want to pay a visit back to Barcelona in the near future and immerse myself in the culture a bit more… visit some bars, eat more tapas… you get the drill.
I’d undoubtedly recommend this place to anyone… I mean, what’s not to love? I’d also suggest to WALK…pretty self explanatory, but a lot of the things we wanted to do were in walking distance within each other (bar a few). On our first full day we did over 31,000 steps… not that I remember. It definitely wasn’t one of my proudest moments.
So, that seems to round up my blog post about my trip to Barcelona. If you’ve visited before, let me know what your thoughts were on it! If you’re planning a visit in the near future… I’m jealous!
Love, Dayna x