In a city filled with incredible architectural masterpieces from Gaudi, there is another architect who often gets forgotten. And yet he is perhaps just as influential in terms of founding the Catalan art form of 'modernism'. His name is Lluís Domènech i Montaner and one of his best designs is the Palau de la Música Catalana. The Catalan style of architecture called 'modernism' was developed to support a new Catalan identity.
If you're trying to pick a city to visit based on the food alone, Barcelona is no doubt on the top of that list! Catalonian cuisine combines the very best elements of Spanish and French cooking with that uniquely Catalan flare that is unmatched anywhere else in the world. Knowing which items you NEED to eat when you're there will help you weed out the authentic recipes from the tourist traps.
The Festa Major de Gràcia is Barcelona's biggest, most colourful and most popular neighbourhood, street festival. Every year, the Gràcia neighbourhood is transformed with fantastical scenes made out of recycled materials and bright papier-mâché . The decorations and all the events are organised by local residents with their aim being to bring together the community and invite others from all over the world to experience their outlandish creations. The festival is also replete with activities and events for all the family so throughout the week-long festival there is always something to do.
Barcelona is one of the most artful and vibrant cities I've ever visited. Every corner you turn feels like stepping into a colourful daydream. And it's no coincidence that this picturesque city cultivated so many different world-famous artists and artistic movements. Getting to explore the museums and art galleries of Barcelona is something I feel that everyone should do when travelling to this city. It's a world-class place when it comes to these institutions and there is truly something for everyone!
Park Guell is one of Antoni Gaudi's most imaginative and symbolic work of art which thanks to a failed housing project is now open to the public as a city park. Hidden in the north of Barcelona his version of nirvana.
If there one thing I like to do more than anything else it's to explore locals marketplaces. Whether it's a rural farmer's market no bigger than a few tables of tomatoes or a giant European market hall, there is something so exciting about being surrounded by a myriad of colours, aromas and flavours local to that city.
Anytime I'm travelling and staying somewhere for an extended period; I always try to stay in an Airbnb. There is something, not just about the way they feel, but where they are usually located. Airbnb's, compared to hotels, are usually located outside of the tourist hub. Local neighbourhoods where you can suddenly feel at home. Instead of turning every corner and being faced with camera frenzied, travellers and "American" bars.
During our first visit to Barcelona, we stayed in the up and coming, trendy neighbourhood of 'El Poble-sec'. We picked a colourful and quirky Airbnb for our lodgings. We hoofed our way up the six floors, barely managing our clunky bags up the narrow 19th-century staircase.
One of the most exciting and interesting parts of our trip to Barcelona was arriving there on the last day of “The Festa Major de Gracia”. Before planning the trip, I hadn’t even heard of this festival but after experiencing it, albeit on the last day when the festivities were winding down, I can say for sure it was one of the best experiences and the most interesting festival I’ve ever attended!