Parc de la Ciutadella

Barcelona! How to enjoy it in a smart and funny way!

Reading time: 10 minutes. Enjoy!

*All photos are author’s property and penalties will be imposed upon violation*

Barcelona has been amazing from the very first touch. We were landing and it was sunset time. The beautiful panoramic view from my plane window prepared me for one exciting week in Barcelona! Can’t wait to share with you!

Parc de la Ciutadella
Parc de la Ciutadella Barcelona Fountain

The food, the music, the street dance, bikes around me, the breeze, the whole spirit is something I fell in love with! But let’s start from the beginning.

We used Airbnb to reserve our apartment Habitat ApartmentsIt is suitable for 2 couples/ 4 people. It is close to the city center and close to some of the most popular Gaudi’s houses. The restaurants around are one of the bests.

Smart Tip 1: It is much better to be outside of the city center during your stay. You can walk to the central areas. The reason is the main street is not the best choice to eat and to rest.

Colorful Barcelona
Barcelona is so colorful!

Smart Tip 2: If you use Airbnb, check what is the cleaning fee and the fee if you arrive later than the arranged hour – sometimes these fees can be unexpectedly huge.

Smart Tip 3: Plan in advance what you will visit during your stay in Barcelona! The city is so charming, there are plenty of architectural and historical places, some of them are far away from each other. Organizing what you will see during the day, will save your time and energy and you will have an enjoyable experience!

Not to be missed. Sharing my list 🙂

  1. Casa Batlló and La Pedrera

Casa Battlló can be seen from the outside, there are benches you can sit on and admire the building just in front of it. Inside, there is no furniture and taking into consideration all the entrances you’ll pay during the next days, you can save money from this entrance. Of course, it is up to you and Gaudi is always charming, no matter which masterpiece you are visiting.

La Pedrera is one of my favorite attractions. They have one of the best audioguides. It’s like you are in a fairy tale. The house is one of a kind and the symbolism is everywhere. You will see the four vital elements as parts of the house and many more… I strongly recommend this house to be visited even the entrance is 20 EUR. I will write my fairy tale in La Pedrera in a separate post soon! The house is so vital and inspiring!

2. The main street Las Ramblas and the most famous market La Boqueria

The main street is full of tourists, emotions, different languages and offers unexpectedly little streets you can take to escape from the crowd. In the past, it has been a flowing river here and that’s why you can notice the waves on the mosaic of Las Ramblas (representing the water element). The market La Boqueria is on Las Ramblas. Only Sunday is not working day for it. There you can find yourself exploding because of the delicious food you have tasted.

Las Ramblas
The waves on the mosaic of Las Ramblas
Gothic Square
Gothic Square

Patatas Bravas, Paellas, Gazpacho, Jamon Iberico, Calamari and seafood, Tortilla Espanola, Crema Catalana, Chorizo, and much more typical Spanish delicacy will make your day one of the best! The wines, of course, are the cherry on the cake! Saludos! Cheers!

3. All Squares has their own charm. Gotic Quarter. Columbus Monument.

Columbus monuments have to be observed by all 4 sides as the figures are quite nice. If you decide to go on the top of it, the panoramic view well worth it. The monument is on the first line of the sea. Another option is to enjoy this view from a cable car, which I did.

Columbus Monument
Columbus Monument

Smart Tip 4: Las Ramblas, La Boqueria, and The Columbus monument plus some nice squares around (The biggest Square is Plaza Catalunya at the beginning of Las Ramblas) can be good combination on your planning list as they are close to each other and basically you will follow the main street and will reach the seaside where is the Monument at the end.

Plaza Catalunya
Plaza Catalunya
La Boqueria
La Boqueria

4. Biking on the seaside + Ciutadella Park and Monument

Actually, this was one of the best choices we’ve been taken. Amazing way to discover the whole seaside, to refresh yourself, to visit the sightseeing around and to do some sport before the next portion of TAPAS and WINES. I truly enjoy this biking tour that we’ve organized for ourselves. I felt like Shakira who actually did her clip of “Loca Loca” song on the main seaside street. In the city center, you can easily rent bikes. It is cheap and saves your time.

The Aquarium is on the seaside as well and it is quite nice!

Smart Tip 5: If you don’t have much time to spend in Barcelona, definitely this is the way how you should explore the city.

Biking in Barcelona
Biking in Barcelona

5. Sagrada Familia – Gaudi’s masterpiece!

Definitely, a must on your list. It is a symbol of the city, one of the most significant works of Gaudi. La Sagrada Familia has been building for many years and it is expected in 2021 to be finished. It represents an amazing symbolism and an unbelievable architecture. Gaudi has been a genius!

Sagrada Familia
Sagrada Familia

Smart Tip 6: Book your ticket in advance to skip the queue. Saving slot for a certain hour of entering the building will give you 15 minutes to walk around and then you will need to follow your second slot on the ticket for one of the 2 Towers. Don’t be late for this second slot! After observing the Tower, you will have time to walk around the whole Basilica.

NB: The hours after lunchtime are better because the sunlight is going inside the Cathedral in a unique way! The photos will be better as well if taken during this time.

Smart Tip 7: When booking your ticket for Sagrada Familia, you will be requested to choose which of the 2 Towers you want to visit – the Passion or Nativity Tower. The choice is yours. The Passion tower is the new one, built after the Gaudi’s dead. It is without much ornamentation. The Nativity Tower is the older tower and the ornaments and symbolism are everywhere. Both towers are quite nice, but you need to choose one of them. There are no tickets that include both.

Smart Tip 8: Take an audio guide for Sagrada Familia. Definitely worth it! Otherwise, you will skip most of the little details which are so interesting and hide history behind.

6. Park Guell

Nice park with lots of opportunities for fun, walks and relax. Nice alleys and you can spend 2 or more hours walking here. There is only one paid part of Park Guell, where you can see the famous mosaic of Gaudi and the famous Gaudi’s lizard.

Smart Tip 9: To be honest, you can save around 17 EUR for this paid part if you plan to visit other Gaudi’s things like houses, Sagrada Familia. Because this paid part is nothing really distinctive from his work done at La Pedrera or Sagrada Familia for example. It is nice of course and totally your choice.

Park Guell
Park Guell

7. Camp Nou

If you are a big football fan, then it totally worths to visit Camp Nou. For all the rest, the entrance is expensive – around 30 EUR and you can save some money for tapas and wines.

Camp Nou
Camp Nou
Camp Nou handball
Did you know Barcelona has quite a good handball team!?

8. Olympic Park and Montjuic Castle

The Olympic Park will be more interesting for people who like sports. Montjuic Castle is more related to local history. It is with nice architecture and beautiful view. Olympic Park and Montjuic Castle are close to each and should be considered to be visited together.

9. Tibidabo – the translation of the name means

” I am giving to you”,

taken from The Bible. It represents the episode where the evil enchants.

Tibidabo is a hill with a beautiful church and an amusement park. The perfect place if you are with kids. In the church, you can see one of the Black Madonnas. There are 400-500 Black Madonnas in Europe depending on how they are classified.

The Black Madonna at Tibidabo
The Black Madonna at Tibidabo
Tibidabo Amusement Park
Tibidabo Amusement Park

What I missed was the Montserrat tour but I heard it is hot! Next time I am there and if you have time, don’t miss it!

This seems like the end of my Barsa experience. For now! I will definitely visit this city again! Maybe next summer!

Kisses from Barcelona!
Kisses from Barcelona!

 

 

The city of the Bulgarian Tsars and Emen’s fairy tales.

Bulgaria has been established in 681. An old country with history and traditions. Situated on the Balkans and part of Europe. It is an amazing country for a trip because of its beautiful nature. Impressive mountains, The Black Sea beaches, the spirit of the Old Bulgarian traditions, the delicious food, the home-made wine and the traditional alcoholic drink rakiya – these are just a few things everyone can really enjoy in Bulgaria. There are really cheap offers for flights to Sofia, the capital of Bulgaria, so no matter of the season it is totally worth it to visit this small but extremely charming country!

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Tsarevec, Veliko Turnovo, Bulgaria

Our trip starts at Sofia and we are going to Veliko Turnovo city, situated in Stara Planina mountain region. We drive 2 hours by car. The architecture of the city is unique, all the streets in the Old city are cobblestone and there are many historical places in the city of Veliko Turnovo – churches, old buildings.

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Welcome to Tsarevec! Veliko Turnovo! Bulgaria

Veliko Turnovo was Bulgarian historical capital of the Second Bulgarian Empire. It is called the cities of the Tsars because the Bulgarian emperors had lived there and build city-state fortress. There are 3 hills – Tsarevec, Trapezitsa, and Sveta Gora. The river Yantra crossed the city and forms amazing Canyon in the mountain Stara Planina.

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The entrance of Tsarevec is just 3 EUR

The fortress Tsarevec is very famous because of the audiovisual spectacle “Sound and Light” which is performed every year during national holidays and festivals of the city Veliko Turnovo. It is FREE and it is performed no matter the weather conditions. It is an outdoor spectacle.

The “Sound and Light” is a spectacular thunderous show presenting the dramatic history of the Second Bulgarian State. One of the best dates to be watched are 3 and 22 March and 6 September. This time of the year the weather usually is very nice.

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View from the Baldwin tower in Tsarevec

After visiting Veliko Turnovo our last stop is 8 km away – Village Emen. The village is an eco place where you can relax in a quiet and calm place. Complex “Imenieto”  (click on teh name to find their facebook page) was my choice to stay and I love it. So much green area around, so cozy place with space for outdoor activities, a nice pool and volleyball playground. There is a spa included and the kitchen is really nice. The food is home-made and extremely delicious! This complex contains 8 wooden houses close to the forest. It smells so fresh and you could sleep so well.

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In the village Emen there is a famous Canyon called Emenski Canyon, The cave of Emen and the echo path Emen.

Massive rocks, impressive view and an adventurous path will lead you to the epicenter of the Emen’s fairy tale. It smells on fresh moss, the Waterfall of the Emenski Canyon is calling you from the beginning of the echo path. You are trying to get to this waterfall and the road is intriguing.

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at the echo path of Emen

The Canyon and the Waterfall of the village Emen are with faerie energy and the beautiful nature around is simply amazing. I feel the Bulgarian mountain is alive and it beats with the rhythm of the rocks, the wind, the water and the sky – perfect harmony between nature and her guests!

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Take the road!