Parc de la Ciutadella
A massive downpour to clean the streets of the night before – and people. Take an umbrella and walk through Ciutadella Park. Sit by the boating lake, a tiny area of water with about 20 boats that pile up fast like a Friday night traffic jam. Over to the Born and En Aparté for coffee or wine. The service is good, friendly. Predominantly French fare so it’s cheese with ham, cheese with bread, cheese with cheese. Or cheese. Apart from the carrot cake. The coffee’s good. So is the price. There’s the brunch menu at weekends.
Head up to CosmoCaixa for no other reason than to walk through the rainforest. Be attacked by a bird (it happened). Worry that the “thing” wandering around the swamp missed breakfast and that the anaconda’s developed an exit strategy. (It wasn’t asleep and they’re fast). Walk down the hill because you can, past houses that look like a set from The Addams Family. Read the rest of this article…
Justine Ancheta’s perfect day in Barcelona
I’m from Orange County, California, and I’ve lived in Barcelona for six years. My husband, who’s from Seville, and his job are what bring me to this magnetic Catalan capital. My two children were born here, and together as a family, we’ve already had many perfect days enjoying kid-friendly Barcelona. In this “perfect day”, I’d try it without my little darlings!
At 10am, the babysitter would arrive ready to play with the kids. My husband and I would head to the eclectic barri of Gràcia. We’d search for a carb-heavy breakfast to jumpstart our energy levels. We were about to have a perfect day! We’d go to Be My Bagel (c/ Planeta, 37), whose bagels achieve the perfect amount of firmness and chewiness, just like the ones I remember in my beloved US. We’d order it slopped on with some cream cheese, and of course, have some cafe amb llet. Read the rest of this article…
Carrer Verdi, Gràcia
Gràcia in Barcelona is the neighbourhood where I’ve lived my entire and still short (hey, I’m still young, ok?) life. To me, it is the best neighbourhood in Barcelona (you could argue I’m a little biased), as it still has that sense of antiquity, that village atmosphere as though it wasn’t part of the busy, modern city that lies just a few minutes away.
If you are planning on spending a few days in Barcelona, Gràcia is, without doubt, one of the must-sees. I’ve prepared for you a one day trip in Gràcia, and all I can say is: I wish all my days were like this!
You could start the day having breakfast at La Nena, a chocolaterie where you’ll be able to taste one of the best hot chocolates in town (with a French croissant, just to make sure you take in all the calories possible). Read the rest of this article…
Playa de la Mar Bella
“Barcelona… the city that Anthony Bourdain of No Reservations described as “the most exciting place to eat in the Western world”.
The perfect day in Barcelona would fall in late September, when the stinging heat gives way to long barmy nights. Barcelona is the only global city with access to incredible beaches via public transport (Sydney and Rio de Janeiro also come to mind), so a morning swim at Playa de la Mar Bella is obligatory.
Breakfast in Spain does not hold the same status as it does in the UK (Full English) or Latin America (Calentado), but a slice of melon draped with jamon, some fresh mato cheese with honey and the caffeine kick of a cortado is a nice way to start the day.
Shops and galleries begin opening at 10am in Barcelona so a visit to the Picasso Museum, the Ferran Adrià & El Bulli exhibition and Roca Gallery will easily fill a few hours and have you thinking about lunch. Read the rest of this article…
A fab article from illustrator, Kat Cameron, on the delights of sketching in Barcelona (including some of her even fabber illustrations).
Barcelona Landscape – © Kat Cameron
A mosaic of green, blue, and red emerges in my mind when I visualise Barcelona. A city of flat terracotta roofs, encircled with the olive-green forests of the Collserola rolling down to the aqua Mediterranean. From first touching down in the glass airport to a wander through the textured gothic alleyways or a glance at the modernista architecture, you know you have landed in a city of art. Miro, Gaudí, Dalí and Picasso all spent time here, and as you meet the locals you discover that Barcelona is filled with architects, designers, graphic artists and illustrators, so really it is the perfect city to go for a stroll with your sketch pad and pencils, find a spot and record your surroundings. Read the rest of this article…