I wouldn’t say Gareth and I were particularly impulsive. My diary is usually pretty booked solid these days, and in the rare times when it’s not I spend most of my time glued to my computer screen, trying my hardest to power through my ever expanding ‘to do’ list. Gareth has also never, ever surprised me with a holiday before so its not something I’d ever expect him to do.
So you can imagine my complete astonishment when he popped into my office the day before my 30th, and said, “I was thinking that for your birthday I’d take you to Barcelona… in two days time!”
WHAT!?! Oh my God!
Never having done a mini break abroad before, I wasn’t sure what to expect. I also had NO TIME to research or plan anything. Could we really see everything in just three days? Where were we staying? Was it in the right area? What clean clothes do I have? Where can I grab some Euros?!?
Luckily, my Dad travels to Barcelona a lot for work so Gareth has already grilled him on the best things to see and do. He came armed with a thorough and very packed itinerary!
If you’re after a honeymoon that offers you the best of both worlds then you really need to consider Barcelona. We stayed in the centrally located Alma Hotel on Carrer de Mallorca which is just off Passeig de Gràcia, the high end shopping area. It was a 20 minute walk down to the gothic district and just four Metro stops right down to the beach. Perfect!
As I said, we were only there for three short days but with Gareth’s packed schedule we really managed to see a lot! Here are my top ten Barcelona must sees, followed by a few other bonus tips to really get the best out of your time in this wonderful city.
I’d grab yourself a cuppa for this one, I have a lot to say!
1. Stare in awe at Sagrada Familia
One of the first things in Gareth’s plan was to visit Sagrada Familia, the awe-inspiring Gaudí cathedral. I’ll be honest when I say apart from knowing that construction started in the late 1800s and that it was still unfinished, I knew pretty much next to nothing about this iconic building.
As we turned the corner and saw it for the first time, we both audibly gasped. It was much much bigger than I expected (and it’s going to be even taller when it’s finished!) and completely incredible in real life.
Off we went to find the queue to get in and we – eventually – found the end of it about 10 minutes later! It was going right around the block, and although I have to admit to having a bit of a moan at the prospect of waiting over an hour to get into some old building, I’m really glad that Gareth forced me too. It was totally worth it and, if possible, even more astonishing inside.
A trip to Barcelona won’t be complete without stopping off here. Make it top of your list of priorities!
Check out the abseiling dude, working on the stained glass windows!