|Ella eating Spanish paella|
Our first guest post, by Beverlie, was a hit! Now I’m delighted to have our second, and we are keeping in the family as it is by my gorgeous niece, Ella, who is 14. She was lucky enough to visit Barcelona.
Over to Ella:
I was lucky enough to visit Barcelona which is an amazing city, with so much to see and do. Here are my recommendations.
The Sagrada Familia is probably the best known thing in Barcelona. Gaudi’s ambitious – and incomplete, but beautiful – Church is an amazing sight, whether you explore the inside or enjoy the beauty of the outside.
La Rambla is another brilliant thing you find in Barcelona. A wide pedestrian street, with street performers, stalls selling birds and other animals, flowers everywhere and stunning – but crazy – buildings surrounding you, the road is one you must walk down, if you ever find yourself in Barcelona – although I was warned a thousand times to look out for pickpockets! The mosaic in the centre of the street is also something that is impossible to miss.
Other famous places in Barcelona include La Pedrera, the Park Guell, Montjuic – even the Camp Nou Football stadium could be thought of as cultural… maybe.
The thing with visiting such famous, well known and brilliant places is the queues. It’s inevitable, everyone wants to be there – but if you’re travelling with young children, on a short trip, standing in a queue for hours is not the most enjoyable thing to do. Fortunately, in Barcelona, there are other ways to get a taste of the city, without spending your day staring at the back of someone’s head.
The highlight of my trip was the Cable Car from Montjuic to the port. It transports you over the city, offering amazing views, especially over the water, where you honestly feel like you can see the whole world. (Unfortunately, this is something that has not yet been mastered!)
|The view from the cable car|
When you get off the Cable Car, you’ve arrived at the Barceloneta – the beach! It amazes me how the city has managed to fit a beach in too – how unfair that London doesn’t have this on offer. And it’s not just any old beach, cafes, shops and extremely friendly people were all around.
Barcelona’s Chocolate Museum was another brilliant way to spend an hour or two. Here, we learnt about and celebrated how chocolate was first brought to Europe – and being able to eat your ticket to the museum was an added extra which EVERY museum should have! We had the opportunity to learn about the cultural and economic significance of chocolate for Barcelona and the entire continent of Europe, and we also could marvel at incredible chocolate models.
Something that I found incredible in Barcelona was the amount of scenery and greenery! The Park Guell is a highlight of the city. It’s an incredible park, with amazing buildings, sculptures, amazing tile work – and all this was designed by Gaudi. When I was in Year 4, we studied Gaudi, and my teachers put a lot of effort into making me DETERMINED to visit the park. Finally – five years later – I was able to go, and it was amazing, it completely met my expectations.
Montjuic was another place to find incredible scenery. The view was, to put it simply, WOW. Breathtakingly stunning, with only one turn of our heads, we could go from seeing an endless, glimmering sea, to the bustling and busy city centre.
On our final day in Barcelona, we spent our time in the Parc de la Ciutadella. It was fabulous. We had a brilliant afternoon boating on the lake, eating ice creams, and listening to live music from the bandstand. And my brother and I loved dancing to the Disney songs, and making fools of ourselves!
There were two practical things on our trip that looking back, really did impact extremely positively. The hotel we stayed in was called Hotel Fira Palace. It was slightly outside the main tourist area, meaning it was very peaceful and relaxing. The rooms were spacious – and interconnecting! The best thing about the hotel was its indoor pool, which was an amazing way to end a busy day. The breakfasts were delicious, and the set evening menu was reasonably priced and surprisingly good quality! There was even veggie Paella on offer, which I happily enjoyed two days in a row.
Another brilliant practicality was a taxi app called Hailo. If you have a smart phone, this app is an incredible luxury to make your trip to Barcelona just that little bit easier. Because Barcelona is a relatively small town, the price of a taxi for a family of four isn’t that different to a tram or bus ride. With the knowledge that a taxi is just one click on an app away, you don’t need to go chasing taxis – one’s always right round the corner!
We had a brilliant time in this wonderful city – and I hope to be able to visit Barcelona again in the future!
Thank you to Sarah, Jess and Robert for having me on their brilliant blog – and thank you for reading!
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