Where we stayed, where we ate and what we did...
A five night break in the beautiful city Barcelona is both what we needed. I had been wanting to go for a while but it escalated when I saw "Barcelona? :-)" at the bottom of the anniversary card from Rakesh. I had heard a lot of mixed things, beautiful city but a lot of pick pockets and a horrible beach... There was no horrible beach, it was glorious.
It took us a long time to get around to researching things to do, where to eat and even where to stay beforehand. I'm glad we left it last minute to book a hotel because we ended up staying in one of the best hotels I've ever stayed at... it was above a bakery! As you can imagine we indulged in a lot of pastries, patatas bravas and sangria. We would most certainly visit Barcelona again. This post is including my favourite photographs from the trip (I saved all the lovely selfies for Facebook obviously).
Stay - Praktik Bakery
All the nice and cheap Air B&Bs were occupied and we had left it so late we were worrying we wouldn't find anywhere decent to stay... until I stumbled across the Praktrik Hotel. They have a few hotels in Barcelona and one in Madrid and when we saw the bakery had rooms available well we were happy. We became very excited to stay here despite it being over our budget. When we arrived around lunchtime there was already a queue for the bakery and obviously the smell of fresh bread and pastries made our post flight tummies rumble. Our room... pretty blue tiles, a huge huge bed, black lamps and white bedroom tiles with a clothes/sink area made from white piping... yes interior heaven. We ate at the bakery downstairs more times than we thought we would, we opted out of the guest buffet though. There was a pastry that I fell in love with and I never did catch the name of it, covered in dusty sugar! I had that a good few times. We also had cinnamon buns and tried some savoury pastries with our morning coffees. I never did try one of those apple pastry tarts ⇓ and yes I regret it now.
Eat - La Rita
When a restaurant looks different to how it appears on the outside. Cute menu and a posh setting. This was our first meal of the holiday and we dove straight into TAPAS! We were very hungry bears and decided on many things on the menu... octopus (which I probably won't have again), patatas bravas, ham and eggs and squid. Oh and we had some Barcelona beer and I really wanted to keep the bottle (I have a little bottle collection).
Drink - Arte
We were looking for a restaurant that was actually closed and stumbled across Arte by accident, I gave it a double look. It's a tea shop/space/tea room+bar all in one, it was so visually pleasing. The most amazing bathroom i've seen! We ordered a BCN gin and tonic and sat next to each other instead of opposite so we could both look out on to the space. Amazing space, with a very quirky interior. The gin was delicious, we couldn't stop going on about it. It was the perfect end to our trip and the start of our tipsy journey to the airport.
Eat - Marina Bay by Moncho's
There will be lots of places to eat by the seafront we said... there wasn't many but found this cute place on the whim. We fancied a seafood dinner and we actually had a seafood dinner! Starting with spicy patatoes and calamari and ending with mussels and prawns. A great dinner and another great gin!
Drink - Black Lab Brewhouse
We came here twice, the first time just for drinks and we said we wanted to eat here after reading the menu and seeing some burgers being bought out to other diners. The next day we came here for lunch but unfortunately we wouldn't recommend their burgers because they just crumbled apart even the bun! We would however recommend this place for their collection of craft beers and beer battered fries.
Eat - Ocana
Walking down La Ramblas getting peckish and stumbled across this really cute courtyard, with restaurants in every direction. Razor clams, patatas bravas and garlic prawns for our pre paella dinner! and a lovely jug of sangria on the side. This place had an amazing interior, concrete and plants mainly.
Do - Park Guell
Escalators up to the park, huge cacti, amazing views over Barcelona and a cafe that sells sangria what else could a park need. One of the best parks i've ever visited, we didn't pay entry to see the tourist attractions.
Do - Go Car
Weeks before getting to Barcelona we watched an old youtube clip advertising these 'Go Cars' and we laughed at the idea. On our last day we felt we hadn't really seen enough touristy things so we decided to go on a guided tour for an hour. It was a lot more fun than we thought it would be. It was 60 euros and it was worth it. The car talks to you and gives you a guided tour and it thinks it's hilarious which is quite cringy.