Certificate of Excellence award 2012, 2013 and 2014 Read the Reviews
It can all be a little overwhelming, the city may not be huge but the culture, activities, events, eateries etc. is vast. So we have taken it upon ourselves to amalgamate our local 12 years experience in the city via our blog. Whether you are planning on coming over for the festivals, want to find out vegan eats or general insider information, we will keep you in the loop.
Seeing Barcelona from above is a must in this city. With all the range of architecture from the Modernista buildings in Eixample, to the modern Torre Agbar, Gothic Barcelona Cathedral and the way they are sprawled across the city in a grid system before meeting the sea – it is all quite spectacular! So we have put together a few of our favourite places to enjoy the incredible vistas.
Gavà Mar is approximately 15 km south of Barcelona just past the airport and is about 20 minutes from Barcelona by car or 40 minutes by public bus. The beach at Gavá Mar starts from near the Barcelona airport and extends to join the beach at Castelldefels. There is no railway station at Gavá Mar, but take bus number L95 from bus stop on street Ronda de la Universitat next by Plaza Catalunya, which gets you there in about 40 minutes.
Sure there’s Barcelona’s Barceloneta beach but when you feel like venturing a little further out we suggest you head over to Ocata. It is approximately 20 minutes away from Plaça Catalunya and is long stretch of golden sandy beach. Unlike the city beach, you can find a nice little space to relax, and you’re more likely to find yourself surrounded by locals. Ocata is quiet, pristine and very flat, with plenty of space.
We just love an art gallery and Barcelona seems to be filled with plenty of independent and small gallery spaces in every nook the city seems to have. Plom gallery is one of the latest additions to the others that reside on Carrer Sèneca in the Gràcia neighbourhood, with a focus on introducing art to children. They sell original and limited edition paintings, and some impressive colourful illustrations.
Girona is a beautiful medieval town that charmingly connects the old quarters and new town. Many visit this part of Catalonia for it’s luscious green scapes where one can easily go cycling or hiking through the countryside. It is also a classic pitstop for those that intend to spend some time in the Costa Brava region to relax on sandy beaches and bask in the sun. It is also a fair medium if you wish to visit the Dalí museum in Figueres, a recommended trip whilst in Barcelona.
Hair salons – some just love going to get their tresses trimmed and cared for, whilst just the thought fills others with dread. Sometimes it’s the overall environment, clinical aspect of it all or the simple fact that you would just prefer to be in the comfort of your own home.
We are going to get straight to it, Zumzeig is a new cinema due to open this week. Built entirely from the ground up, this space will screen a diverse range of non-commercial films such as American independent films, documentaries, art house films, and video art all in the original languages with subtitles. The new hall, which will have 70 seats and bistro, will exhibit an average of 5 weekly movies distributed in about 20 countries.
There is something to be said about venturing off, and away from the hustle and bustle and strays of tourists you can find Laberint d’Horta, a peaceful neo-classical garden. This luscious green space designed in 1792 by the Italian engineer Domenico Bagutti, resonates with the romanticism of the mid 19th century era and is a delightful space to relax in with hectares galore.
Today is the reopening of Mercat del Born and is expected to be an inauguration like no other. This market was a prime location for wholesale trade until the mid 1970s but in recent years has remained closed, with nothing buy lots of talk and promise. It will now operate as the Born Cultural Center, which will act as a hub for the barrio and embody true Catalan culture. It is no surprise then that the opening is on the National Day of Catalonia.
If you want to know where to eat slightly off the beaten tracks or are interested in going for a food walk in a small group, you must check out Culinary Backstreets. They are the ideal choice if you want to unearth more underground places and experience eating among locals, and tucking into dishes prepared by some of the best cooks. With gastronomy being at the forefront of many a conversations in Barcelona, we met with Paula to find out her favorite places and things to do and see in the city.