BARCELONA

DISCOVER MY 3 DAY ITINERARY

In May 2017, I spent a weekend in Barcelona on a girl's trip with my friend and sister. Here's my itinerary with my recommendations:

Day 1 - Arrive in Barcelona

Check into Kabul Party Hostel

After arriving in Barcelona around 10am, we jumped in a quick cab from the airport and made it to our hostel. Located in the heart of the gothic quarter, Kabul
is the perfect location to stay in Barcelona. It has a rooftop
bar and windows that open toward Plaza Reial. This place
is just like Barcelona: cool, young, relaxed, and fun.
Recommendation: Go for it! We absolutely loved this hostel.
All of the workers are amazing, the main lobby is perfect for
chatting with other travelers and making friends, and the
rooftop views can't be beat. 

Lunch at La Delicioso

After dropping off our bags and changing into our beach gear, we headed toward the beach for some much needed lunch. About a ten minute walk from the hostel, we stumbled upon La Delicioso. And yes, it was delicious. I can't get enough of those croquettas and patatas bravas. Recommendation: Go for it! This place is right on the beach, it may be crowded but the drinks and food were delectable. 
Plaza Espana
Lunch at La Delicioso

La Barceloneta

Following our delicious meal, we headed to the beach. It's a large, man-made beach filled with a ton of people--mostly young people, but also some families. If you don't mind the crowds and you're like me and enjoy the buzzy-ness of a fun place, you'll fit right in. Unfortunately, we were very tired from our flight and I fell asleep on my back and got to spend the
rest of my vacation with a terrible sunburn. Despite becoming
cherry red on one half of my body, the beach is lovely.
Recommendation: Go for it! The beach is a perfect place to go
and relax after a long flight. Just remember to set alarms on
your phone so you don't fry. 

Barcelona Tapas Experience with Sandman’s New Europe

We checked into our hostel
around 3pm, settled in and got ready for our Tapas Tour! I loved this tour. Our guide was young and knowledgable (a theme that will last the whole weekend) and the history we learned about Catalonia while eating and drinking yummy food and good wine can't be rivaled. It was the perfect way to start off the trip, and we made some tour buds along the way.
Recommendation: Go for it! I would do it again for sure. 
La Barceloneta
My terrible sunburn
Tapas on the Tapas Tour
We purchased a two in one ticket with Sandman's New Europe and this was included in that.  The show was right by our hostel which was convenient, but we didn't stay long. If you don't get there early, you have to stand the whole time. And honestly, we weren't that captivated by the performances to stay longer than 20 minutes. Recommendation: Eh, if you have time. I personally enjoy a good show and love dancing, but this was not as captivating as I'd like it to be. 
Drinking from the Pouro
Tapas Tour with the Girls

Flamenco Show

Dancing at Tarantos

We skipped out on the Flamenco Show early and headed to a cool club underneath our hostel. This place was so fun and crowded, but eventually we were tired from all the no sleeping and headed up to our beds. 
Recommendation: Go for it!

Day 2 

The Cathedral
Waking up too late for the free hostel breakfast, we hurriedly got dressed and ran down to center of Plaza Reial to meet up with our 10am walking tour. Kabul
provided two free walking tours, and today we chose the
Gothic Tour. Perfect for getting to know our neighborhood
and the oldest part of Barcelona. Alejandro was an
incredibly thoughtful guide with tons of great information;
he even let us stop to buy some snacks for breakfast.
Recommendation: Go for it! There is no better
way to discover a city than with a walking tour, and when
they are free, it just means you get to reward your guide
however much you enjoyed the tour. 

Free Walking Tour - Gothic Quarter

Picasso's Family Home

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Locals dancing

BBQ Boat Tour with Stoke Travel

This boat trip was nothing fancy, there were quite a lot of people on the boat--a few Bachelorette parties and large packs of French guys--but very relaxing. It was a catamaran around the Mediterranean... what more could you ask for?! The water was beautiful, I tried desperately to even out my sunburn and relaxed in the sun while listening to "Despacito" a dozen times. The food was very VERY sub-par and with only one drink ticket, we stuck to drinking water. There wasn't a vibe of community or making friends like we had on our Tapas Tour, but all the same it was nice experience.
Recommendation: Go for it! I say this reluctantly, only because I wasn't a fan of the company and I wouldn't want to pay for the food. So find a catamaran and do a boat tour, but don't use Stoke Travel (in my opinon). 
Trying not to let the sun kill me
After some R&R at the hostel and some major Aloe Vera application to my purple sunburns... we got dressed up and ready for dinner to celebrate Carly's birthday! A bartender at the hostel recommended this place. It was just across the plaza and very reasonably priced. We loved it! I need to go there again. Everything on the menu sounded delicious and everything we ordered exceeded our expectations. This definitely feels like a fancy place, but our bill was only about 25 euro each--which is totally bonkers. Recommendation: Go for it! I'm dreaming of returning... so you gotta go. 

Dinner at Les Quinze Nits

So much amazing food at dinner
After our fancy dinner, we returned to the hostel and joined the nightly pub crawl! Our leader, Pablo, was unbelievable, both at wrangling backpackers and creating a fun and friendly environment. We quickly learned that people who run the morning walking tours also run the evening pub crawls... so once again, we spent the weekend with lots of young and intelligent people. 
Recommendation: Go for it! Pub crawls are a fun way to meet new people and discover new neighborhoods.

Pub Crawl

My new favorite restaurant in Barcelona

Opium

We ended the pub crawl at a large club called Opium. Barcelona truly has some of the coolest clubs in the world. There all humungous and yet filled with some many people, it's astounding. 
Recommendation: Go for it! Even if clubs aren't your thing, go a little earlier and hang out in the outside portions... it's quite a spectacle! 

Day 3

Free Breakfast at Hostel

We woke up in time for our free hostel breakfast today. It's pretty classic free hostel breakfast... nothing fancy, just the basics.
Recommendation: Eh, depends. If you're a foodie: no. If you're a backpacker needing to conserve money: it's a saving grace. 
Casa Batllo
Casa Batllo

Free Walking Tour - Gaudi Tour

Andddd Pablo was our tour guide! We had SO MUCH FUN
on this tour, even Alejandro joined us.  Pablo showed us all
the Gaudi architecture sights ending with La Sagrada
Familia. Although, we didn't have time to tour the inside of
Casa Batllo, it was wonderful to learn about it from our guide.
Recommendation: Go for it! A fantastic tour. 

Lunch at ?????

I can't for the life of me remember
where we went... But, Pablo and
Alejandro took a group of us from
the tour to a restaurant and we all had
lunch.  I do remember that the place was near La Sagrada Familia and it was not amazing or anything. The company of everyone was great though, having so many countries represented at one table is always a treat.
Recommendation: Go for it! I know I forgot the name of the lunch spot, but making friends with your fellow travelers is always easy over a meal shared. =) 
Inside La Sagrada Familia
Colorful La Sagrada Familia

La Sagrada Familia

We purchased the basic ticket ahead of time, and quickly dashed into Barcelona's most notable landmark and church. The inside is just as crazy as Gaudi's mind. This was great to pop in for 15 minutes like we did and take all the gorgeous pictures.
Recommendation: Eh, if you have time. It's very cool inside, but not life changing. 
La Sagrada Familia

Cooking Class with Stoke Travel

In the evening, we met our tour group at the famous La Boqueria and went shopping for our cooking class. Our guide took us all around the market and showed us all the tips and tricks for Spanish groceries. After the market, we walked to the studio where the class was held. Unfortunately, there could only be a few people cooking at a time--there wasn't individual cooking stations or anything. This was a little disappointing. However, we learned how to make Spanish bruschetta and had bottomless Sangria the whole time.
Recommendation: Eh, if you have time. This wasn't quite as informative or educational as I would have liked, but if you have the time... bottomless Sangria, amiright?  
Enjoying the bottomless sangria
Learning to properly make Bruscetta
Carly cooking our dinner
La Boqueria

Pub Crawl Take 2

We met up with our hostel friends and pub crawl leaders for another fun night where we ended the crawl at Pacha. This place was great and we had a blast on our last night in Barcelona.
Recommendation: Go for it! Because staying up til 6am and catching a flight at 10am is a young traveler's rite of passage. 

Day 4 - Flight Home

Catch Flight Amid Taxi Strike

The next morning we groggily made our way to catch a taxi, only to find there were none! We walked to the airbus to find the longest line I've ever seen in my life. I was confident we were going to miss our flight, but somehow... we made it just in the knick of time. Carly had a later flight and went to Park Guell in the morning before easily catching her plane. Recommendation: I regret not going to Park Guell. We thought we would have more time, but it really sneaks up on you! Until next time, Park Guell. Gotta get my Cheetah Girls picture in! 

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