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  • Barcelona advice
  • Premier Icon blitz
    Subscriber

    Off to Barcelona for a long weekend in a couple of weeks for my wife’s 40th birthday. Never been and have no real itinerary so any tips for places to eat, things to do etc? Have looked at the usual tourist guides but always value the recommendations from here.

    We’re staying at the Yurbban Trafalgar near Plaça de Catalunya.

    Cheers

    hammy7272
    Member

    Look out for Charlie

    Boat tour round the harbour is good, some proper posh yachts in the ship yard.
    The castle reached by the cable car great views
    Nou camp even if your not into football

    Premier Icon lunge
    Subscriber

    Great choice of hotel, the roof top with a beer is awesome a night.
    Bike tours are a great way to see the city. We did the Fat Bike one and it was very good.
    Santa Gula is great for food.
    Calders is great for tapas and beers.

    rhys
    Member

    Definitely the Sagrada. Also Casa Mila Le Pedrera and I’m not a culture vulture

    stanfree
    Member

    Ive been a good few times but now stay just along the coast in Sitges . If its your first time head to Parc guell for the gaudi architecture and views . Casa Battilo roof top is cool also take a wonder through the gothic quarter for some food then down to wards the beach and marina. Nou camp as has been said or hire a cheap bike and cycle up to Montjuc and the castle. I think its one of the worlds great cities and not as expensive as they make out. Enjoy.

    Premier Icon Sandwich
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    This chap is rather helpful with bikes and routes if your allowed out https://www.montefuscocycling.com/

    Las Ramblas was a disappointment, very touristy. Off to the right as you walk away from the sea is more interesting with Roman remains and some nice eateries.

    Book the Sagrada now online else you’ll have a bit of a wait if you turn up and buy.

    +1 Camp Nou
    +1 Sagrada Familia
    +1 Parc Guell

    As you’re near Placa Catalunya, Casa Batllo isn’t too far away.
    Zoo isn’t far from the Gothic quarter
    Las Ramblas is ok, the big market is well worth a visit just off Las Ramblas

    TBH, though, if you’re not into Gaudi & not into FC Barcelona, not that much to see; my least impressive city

    Premier Icon Sandwich
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    There are some very good apps for public transport in the city. Have them all ready to go before you arrive.

    Passadis del Pep.

    Thank me later.

    Premier Icon Moe
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    I wasn’t ‘into Gaudi’ in any way but enjoyed all the buildings my wife dragged me off to, I’m not into football either but Camp Nou is definitely impressive. Sitges is a lovely town and the beaches are nice too.

    Premier Icon garage-dweller
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    Parc Ciutdella where the zoo is is fairly civilised.

    We had a couple of days there when our flight got cancelled. Public transport ticketing is a bit odd iirc. If I remember it right you can cost effectively have more than one of you use a single multi trip ticket but you have to run it through the barrier multiple times.

    Premier Icon blitz
    Subscriber

    Thanks all

    @ Lunge – Good to hear about the hotel. The roof bar looked good in the pics and reviews seem good.

    Will have a look into the suggestions. We did toy with a bike ride but only taking hand luggage so will have to look at what we can fit in.

    Premier Icon devbrix
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    Do book the Sagrada beforehand. Went during the 80’s and wandered around what was then really just a very large building site. We literally crawled over the perilous unfinished bridges between the towers as they had little to stop us falling off. Went back to Barca last year and headed over but sadly couldn’t get a slot to get in. Was the Summer so really busy. Looked amazing and worth a visit.

    Premier Icon tonyg2003
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    Barca is a lovely place to wander round, especially the old town near the harbour. Although not to put a dampener on the trip, take no wallets/handbags expensive watches etc to tourist parts – we just had credit cards/cash with us – since there is a high chance of being pickpocketed/mugged in tourist areas.

    book Sagrada before but worth going on a guided tour, we went this summer

    Premier Icon Watty
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    Although not to put a dampener on the trip, take no wallets/handbags expensive watches etc to tourist parts – we just had credit cards/cash with us – since there is a high chance of being pickpocketed/mugged in tourist ar

    Don’t take this advice lightly. We spent an afternoon in a police station after Mrs W had her bag snatched and the room was literally full of tourists with a similar tale. Lovely place, but be careful.

    And even in restaurants don’t leave things on the floor or tables.

    ji
    Member

    MontJuic is worth a visit and a wander – get there early for the fountain show (free) and then walk over to La Tasqueta de Blai (or take a taxi – its quite a way) for some excellent pintxos (like tapas, but with loads of dishes on the bar to help yourself to – colour coded cocktail sticks for price and you just sttle up at the end).

    Dont be put off by the exterior, or the liklihood of a wait, but try the sandwiches/burgers at Foc i Oli Aribau – the reviews that talk of the best burger ever eaten are not wrong.

    If you want a real laugh head to Bruch and Cake (the one at Carer D’Enrique Garrados) and have a )actually very tasty) instagram ready breakfast with all the beautiful people!

    soobalias
    Member

    hire bikes to get about, its not a big city (by london standards) but a bike makes life so much better/easier
    the arc de triumph (area) for some lovely people watching cafe/bars
    https://blacklab.es/ brewery near the marina, does some nice grub too
    the Olympics site was impressive and i hear the cable car over the marina is the way to go, we cycled round and up.

    baboonz
    Member

    The tourist traps are worth it.

    Premier Icon bruneep
    Subscriber

    Although not to put a dampener on the trip, take no wallets/handbags expensive watches etc to tourist parts – we just had credit cards/cash with us – since there is a high chance of being pickpocketed/mugged in tourist areas.

    We had no real issues, just be sensible and be aware of surroundings, I was aware of one male walking behind us without purpose on Las Ramblas I made eye contact with him to let him know I had seen him and was aware of him, he moved on looking for another “victim” Other than that just dont be careless plenty of other around you will be.

    We did the tapas tour was very good if a bit spendy the tour guide we has was excellent.

    andos
    Member

    Roof bar on top of Museum of History of Catalunya near the marina is nice

    Premier Icon jamesoz
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    To add, a few years ago in Las Ramblas, a couple of lads tried to mug me as I had dropped behind a bit from are group (was limping due to Sciatica).
    One lad tried to distract me by asking for a light, the other tried to get my wallet from my pocket. I probably looked pissed due to my shambling and the fact a waiter had spilt red wine on me. They legged it when I punched the guy with his hand in my pocket.

    So yeah, keep your wits about you and valuables secure.

    I’ve physically caught pickpockets on 3 separate occasions in barcelona….. Its how they make a living and very good at what they do….. Stay away from ravel area of a night… Right side of la rambla behind la bouqeria market…. Nou camp and Olympic stadium worth a look get escalators down to placa de espanya…. Gracia area nice for food and drink…. Barri gotic, left side of La rambla is nice but full of nooks and crannies…. Just be sensible and u will love it

    Premier Icon gastromonkey
    Subscriber

    Barcelona is one of my favourite cities. All the places mentioned above will be enough to keep you busy for a weekend.

    Another place to look at is around the uni. Brew Dog have a bar in the area which is home to other less touristy bars and restaurants. It’s a couple of stops on the metro from Placa Catalunya.

    The notes about security are valid. I’ve been loads of times and not had a problem. But, I have never carried a bag, wallet, camera, only taking some cash and a card with me. Be very aware of your surroundings and if it feels dodgy get out. My last trip there was in early 2019 and it was noticeably worse than previous trips.

    Gastromonkey, I was there spring 2019 and I feel the same about the place, not as good as my past visits, different kind of air to the place….

    Premier Icon blitz
    Subscriber

    Thanks again. Lots of great ideas. Have booked a table at passadis del pep. Will book Sagrada too and then have a look at other the options.

    Had heard about the pickpocket issue but appreciate the practical advice on that.

    poolman
    Member

    Chocolate and churros at churreria laietana, on via laietana. 3.7 euros each, get the porras they are more like doughnuts.

    I walked behind the boqueria market to a gig at the Apollo, areas not that bad theres a massive police station and half the road is parked police cars. Maybe the crime has moved to parallel streets.

    Cafe on top floor el Corte ingles plaza Cataluña best viewing place. Cakes are 5e tho.

    Do the markets but avoid boqueria, full of tourists.

    Cafe at Palau musica catalana is fab. See if there’s any music on, beautiful inside.

    Cafe Lola nearby lovely.

    All the gaudi buildings.

    poolman
    Member

    Just looked up your hotel you are walkable everywhere,5-10 mins to plaza Cataluña. Music palace and café lola is on road behind you, cut through little alley. Best coffee at nomad in alleyway by your hotel.

    Premier Icon nwmlarge
    Subscriber

    We did a cycling tour around the old town and down to the beach was fun and easy going.
    We also did the tour bus to parc Guell etc was nice and easy.

    The obvious recommendation should be La Poma though obvs.

    Premier Icon Nobby
    Subscriber

    Do the markets but avoid boqueria, full of tourists.

    Agree. Santa Caterina is pretty authentic & generally used by the locals – the eatery there does some good stuff too.

    Edit: forgot to say, if you visit Casa Batllo try & remember to use the lift from the roof back down. Quite a few don’t bother but it’s worth it for the weird ‘underwater’ effect from the glazing.

    poolman
    Member

    The cafe in the santa caterina market is v good, it’s called jaume I think. The open one at one corner not the restaurant.

    Brompton store do free demos, book online.

    The park by arc de triomphe is nice, theres a spa alongside, right hand side if you at arc end facing the sea, that do day visits. On the other side behind the govt buildings is a park with big animal sculptures and a cafe.

    Re crime loads of dodgy people lurking about but less so if you avoid the touristy areas and look like a local.

    Premier Icon blitz
    Subscriber

    Back from Barca and wanted to say thanks to all for the tips. Had a really great time. Hotel was great. Spot on location, really nice place. Did quite a few things mentioned. Parc Guell, cable car to Montjuic, walk through the park down to the beach, boqueria. Had a burger (El Fois) at Foc I oli aribau. Superb.

    Highlights however were probably Sagrada Família and Passadis del pep. Sagrada just blew us both away. The advice to do the guided tour was spot on. Really worth it to understand everything and pick out details you’d otherwise never see. The light inside with all of the stained glass was incredibly beautiful. I’m a cynical atheist but was actually quite moved. Can’t imagine how it must feel in there if you actually believe!

    Passadis del pep was a special meal. Did have to swallow hard when the bill came but it was a nice experience and fitting of a special occasion.

    Also, zero issues with pickpockets. In fact never knowingly felt unsafe or at risk at any time. I was on hyper alert due to the advice so maybe just gave off the right vibe that we were on the ball or maybe just less about being out of season but gladly no bother.

    Great place. Made a vow that we’ll go back when Sagrada is finished.

    koldun
    Member

    Just to add a bit to the comments above (as i live here);

    For Parc Guell, there is a view point up the hill behind the park which is well worth a look if the day is clear.
    Parc del Laberint d’Horta is popular and not on most tourist lists.
    REALLY be careful of pickpockets, i can’t stress this enough (the city is basically safe apart from this).
    I would recommend El 58 over in Poblenou for food (you can’t book, just show up and put your name on the list, they have a bar across the road while you wait) and Antic Theatre in El Gotico for drinks

    Premier Icon 16stonepig
    Subscriber

    Bilbao Berria in the old town is a smashing Tapas place:

    https://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/Restaurant_Review-g187497-d997713-Reviews-Bilbao_Berria-Barcelona_Catalonia.html

    schrickvr6
    Member

    We had a nice bit to eat at Tapeo if you’re looking for somewhere near the Picasso museum – https://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/Restaurant_Review-g187497-d1863141-Reviews-Tapeo_Born-Barcelona_Catalonia.html

    Aus
    Member

    Quimet Quimet for proper local tapas

    poolman
    Member

    Brilliant advice here and op feedback. I m going again in 2 weeks so any other ideas welcome. Just googling the places new to me.

    We had awesome Tapas at the wonderfully named “Tossa” which was a sort walk from Sagrada…

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