Benveguts means welcome in Catalan. As we landed in Barcelona, I realized that this particular language – a beautiful mix of culture and sun -, was nothing at all like what I learned during my 7 years of Spanish class.
I had never been to that part of Spain before and to discover it with the man of my life was probably the highlight of the trip.
When I close my eyes and think of Barcelona now, I have a feeling of warmth and color but also of something that somehow reminded me my native South of France. I was born by the beach and I love the fishing smell of the harbor and the salty smell of the sea.
Room upgrade & from the top
As we arrived at the hotel, the lady at the reception desk offered us the option to get a room with a better view at a fair rate. My husband gets inspired by views whereas I am a tiny bit more reflecting at how emptiness attracts me and triggers bizarre feelings in my body – we took the upgrade and didn’t regret it.
For dinner, we enjoyed an even better view of the rest of the city as the hotel had a top-floor located restaurant. The food was refined and just as it should be for our palates. A city at night is a living-spectacle: lights here and there in households, where each inhabitant is busy with his own life.
I would say that the view from the top is a charm Barcelona offers like few other cities. It could be from the National Museum of art of Catalunya (NMAC), from the Olympic tower, from the Park Guël, from the castel Montjuïc or from a restaurant on the roof of Arenas de Barcelona shopping mall at the Espanya place; you will always have the chance to have a glance from the top to the city.
Lift up your head
Some other times you will have to look up to the sky. There is no other way you can enjoy the different architecture the city offers: the monuments signed Gaudi, the Torre Calatrava or the W hotel.
How can someone enjoy the religious artwork of Gaudi that is the Sagrada Familia without making an effort to stretch the neck? On the one side of the church you can see most famous names from the Bible with the word “Sanctus” written artistically. A good way, I believe, to remind visitors –tourists for the most part- that this is art dedicated to God. The other side of the building offers sculptures of passages in the Bible: mainly the worship of the new-born King. It seemed that these statutes were real just as human mimes. A breath-taking outside that resumed well the story of the Bible and that should arise curiosity.
The same way, here is as well the Torre Agbar tower, the Arc de Triomf, the casas Batlò or Milà, the NMAC and many other grandiose pieces of architectural work with a mixtures of columns, fountains and cascades.
Colors, imagination, curves and nature
Few places in the world have left such a footprint in my memory than the imagination of Gaudi. I naturally love mosaics – as I am French, it might be due to my roman ancestors. The world the artist offers fits completely with what my little world is all about: colors, imagination, curves and nature. In that sense, the Guël Park was a must-see. In a world where everything has to be straight lines and dark buildings, this park has a treasure at its heart. The same way a pirate discovers a treasure box with all kind of pearls, rubies, emeralds and other colorful precious stones, the same way this park is a unique experience – at the end of the day, pirates always wished to find these treasures but actually rarely did.
For more nature, you can also walk from the Arc de Triomf to the Parc de la Ciutadella on the large alley with palmers on both sides – an introduction to inspiration. A break from the world, from the noise, where you can see up in the trees cute little green birds that play hide-and-seek with your eyes amongst the leaves.
Always more: the view from Montjouïc castel is very impressive. If you are courageous enough, you can take the furnicular to go up there – we prefered the bus.
The Mercado on the Rambla is a place that will awake your senses with beautiful colors and smell.
The more you would demand from the city, the more she will give you – so be demanding, you cannot be disappointed in Barcelona.