After my first day in Barcelona and catching up on some sleep, I was ready for my second full day in the city. We woke up early and had some of the continental breakfast at my hotel. I wish we’d passed because while it was good, our first stop of the day was La Boqueria on Las Ramblas. It was a short walk from our hotel so we walked over. This area is supposed to be high for pickpockets so we bundled up in our special travel gear but there was nothing. No street performers, no people bumping into us. It might be a high danger place at night, during crowds, or with lots of luggage but it doesn’t have to be scary. Instead of seeing thieves we saw delicious things.
I wish I’d grabbed some juices or fruits. There were also small little dining spots in there, not just vendor booths. And not everything looked delicious in its current form.
We walked up Las Ramblas to the Hop On Hop Off Barcelona Bus Turistic at the Plaça Catalunya stop. This stop serves both the red and the blue line but we hopped on a blue line bus this time. We rode looking past some sites we’d seen the day before until we veered off the old trail and reached our first bus stop for the day- Sagrada Família.
Sagrada Família is yet another dream of Antoni Gaudí. It’s a church, technically a basilica, that Gaudi started in 1883 and worked on till his death in 1926. There have been work stoppages over the years and they were still working on it when we were there but the goal is to finish it in 2026. That might sound crazy but when you look at the detailed art on this you’ll begin to understand why it is taking so long.
We weren’t done with Gaudi yet. After that we got back on our bus and got off at Park Güell. Park Güell was supposed to be a housing development for the wealthy but instead morphed into a city garden. At the base level are housing and buildings dripping with mosaics. As you climb up the park, you are treated to a more natural side of Barcelona and more spectacular views.
That final shot shows where we had been just that morning on Las Ramblas and how high we had gone. We had to head back down but we found some escalators at the edge of the park and caught our bus. On the bus my husband lamented that he felt we still could have gone higher. We rode our bus to the Francesc Macià – Diagonal stop and got some lunch at La Taberna Del Bierzo. Over lunch I mentioned to our husband there was a place on the Red Line that could take us even higher in the city and he agreed instantly without asking what it was. Lucky for us, the stop we were at was a place the red line and blue line merged so we waited for the next red line bus and headed to the Telefèric de Montjuic stop.
Our coupon book given to us by the Hop On Hop Off bus line had a coupon to take the Telefèric de Montjuic for a discounted rate. You ride to the top of Montjuic in a cable car. It’s a great way to see aerial views of the city and when you get to the top of Castell de Montjuïc you can see so much more.
There’s a 17th century fortress at the top of the mountain that was used actively in the Spanish Civil War. Now it is a beautiful way to see the city and its history.
We left the mountain by tram and headed back to a red line bus. We rode the line to Port Olímpic where we headed to Barceloneta Beach.
In September it was too cool for us to want to swim but it was so calming to feel the Mediterranean Sea, knowing the next day we would be cruising on it. We took the Green Line for the buses next but there wasn’t much to see so we went back to the hotel to nap. We overslept a bit, missing a planned gathering and a possible early dinner so we tried a place I was too tired to remember near our hotel. They overserved us just a bit on paella.
After dinner we took to the streets. I grabbed some hazelnut gelato and we headed to the BAM Music Festival that was in town for the La Merce holiday weekend. To this day I am not sure what we saw, it was bizarre as foreigners but the audience seemed to love the two shows we saw.
We’d had a long day so we headed back to our hotel for one final night’s sleep on land.