Barcelona is, without doubt, one of the best cities in Europe. If you are planning to visit, here’s a short guide to help you enjoy this beautiful Catalan city:
1. Gaudi. Gaudi and Barcelona are almost synonymous with each other. Some of the city’s best attractions – Parc Güell, Basilica Sagrada Familia, Gaudi’s house – are all creations of Barcelona’s genius son.
2. Tapas and sangria. An afternoon lazing on the beach sipping sangria and lunching on ridiculously delicious Spanish tapas – who does not want that? Barcelona is the best city to dine and drink without the guilty feeling.
3. La Barceloneta. A long stretch of sandy beach, legendary in Don Quixote’s book, offers the most ideal place to lounge in the summer. The best thing about it? It’s free.
4. Catalan vibe. They say that Catalan is a unique and proud race. Nothing demonstrates that better than being in the capital of Catalunya. Compared to Madrid, Barcelona is livelier and dare we say, more passionate. By the way, it’s not true that they won’t talk to you in English.
5. Fountain show in Plaza Espanya. Four nights every week, from Thursday to Sunday, the locals as well as tourists are treated to a dazzling display of lights and sounds by the Magic Fountain of Montjuic in Plaza Espanya.
6. San Agustin church. Did you know that the Filipino community has their own church in Barcelona given by the Archbishop himself? San Agustin has become a symbol of unity and faith of Filipinos in Barcelona since 1999.
7. La Boqueria market. Love markets? Looking for pasalubongs? There is only one place to head to –La Boqueria. Those who don’t like crowds should be warned though that this market has increasingly become very touristy. But you don’t want to skip this one lest you miss the arrays of delicious hams available only here.
8. Breathtaking cable ride. You might have to fork out a bit of cash if you want to take the cable ride. The trade off is incomparable scenic views of Barcelona. Take the one that crosses the harbor.
9. Picasso. Yes, even Picasso left his heart in Barcelona. Don’t leave Barcelona without visiting Museo Picasso, home to the great Spanish artist’s most extensive collections of paintings. Picasso spent his formative years in Barcelona, and many of his images were inspired by the city’s cultural landscape. He even suggested to his friend Jaume Sabartes to display most of his works in Barcelona rather than in Malaga, his hometown.
10. Pinoys. There is an estimated 22,000 Filipinos in Barcelona. Surely, you won’t get lost.
This article was first published in the 6th edition of The Filipino Expat Magazine. CLICK to read or download back issues