Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Barcelona a la Gaudi

 Where do I begin today? It was a day jam- packed full of all things Barcelona. Jess and I had the best intentions of waking up early, but we decided that sleeping in a little was totally acceptable for a vacation. We had a quick breakfast at the hotel, and then we were off to find the double- decker tour bus. We found it, and hopped up to the top deck. We were also able to listen to a guided tour with a headset, so that was helpful. 

First stop for us was Sagrada Familia, which is an amazing cathedral created by Gaudi, but sadly he was hit by a tram car and died before he could finish. This was after 40 years of work. It was truly amazing. The pillars reached to the sky looking like a forest of trees. Gaudi was inspired by nature, and this is evident in all of his work. The cathedral has two main facades including the nativity and the passion. The modern detail work is truly stunning, it is so detailed in fact, that the cathedral is still not finished. We were able to take a look at the museum and see where they are working making models to ensure that it will continue to stand. 

Soon it was back on the bus, but we were not done with Gaudi. We were headed to Parc Guell where nature was interspersed with Gaudi touches. Spread out through the park were many performers and people selling scarves, jewelry, and small figures. It was a beautiful day, so we just wandered around until we were hungry.

From there, we grabbed a couple of sandwiches and hopped back on the bus where we proceeded to a monastery and the rest of the bus tour of the city. 

It was starting to get really cold on the top of the bus, so we found a little cafe for a cappuccino. Then it was back on the street to find Barri Gotic or the Gothic Quarter. This was a pretty amazing part of the city. It felt like a little village set back in time. We also found another cathedral that had a central court yard complete with a fountain and huge geese swimming in it. 

After our stroll around the streets, it was dark, so we stopped into a cute little place to waste some time before dinner. None of the restaurants open before 8, so we sat and relaxed for a while. Fast forward to dinner at an adorable little place in some square not far from las Ramblas. We had duck with a strawberry sauce over a bed of sweet potatoes and seared tuna with roasted tomatoes. Yum!
Now it is off to bed to get ready for our day trip to Montserrat. We have no idea how we are going to get there, but that is the fun of it right? Until next time.....