The wonders (and food) of Barcelona

La Rambla is a fun place to go, but don’t spend too much time there.

I have a confession to make: I was scared to go to Barcelona.

I don’t know more than a few words in Spanish and, before deciding to go, I hadn’t spent much time researching the country. I was especially nervous about finding our way from the train station to our little apartment in the El Born area.

The stairs to our apartment.

But not even five minutes after stepping off the train in Barcelona did I find out all of my fears were unfounded. In fact, the stairs to our apartment, rented through Air BnB, just off the square where the Basilica de Santa Maria del Mar is located, were the scariest thing we encountered.

Right away, we learned that Barcelona’s train station is one of the easiest to navigate and that, as long as you know the street name, you can find your way around on foot.

We had heard and read that Barcelona was also the pick-pocketing capital of the world, but I soon found out that you can’t judge a place, and its people, on such a small warning.

My husband and I are safe and aware travelers. I should never have thought that I would be in any danger.

The El Born area was probably my favorite as it is right in the center of all wonderfully delicious restaurants and shops that locals and tourists alike frequent.

In fact, since our apartment was located there, we had our first tapas dinner just around the corner from our place.

When my husband saw that this was our dinner, he almost cried out of pure joy.

You see, my husband is a Spanish food fanatic. Every time there is a Spanish dish on the menu, he gets it. If there is something Spanish that he found a recipe for, he will make it. He couldn’t have been happier to finally have real, authentic Spanish food at his fingertips. Our favorites were the staples: jamon, chorizo, cheese, patatas bravas and more jamon.

We enjoyed so many wonderful meals, but my absolute favorite was the truffle ravioli with Parmesan cream sauce at Sensi. We only ordered a half order at this tiny tapas restaurant and I regret it every day. I wish that place was just around the corner so I could go whenever I wanted.

My husband’s favorite was, of course, the jamon. We even went to the Santa Caterina market and ordered a half kilogram of jamon to snack on at the apartment. It was all gone before we even left.

La Sagrada Familia
It took just a little bit for me to get used to the food, however, even though it was amazingly delicious.
You see, I am used to getting a lot of vegetables on a daily basis and it took my stomach a while to get used to all the meat, cheese and fried goodies. But, don’t worry too much about me, I made it through and would do it all over again.
Not only does Barcelona have some of the best food, it also has some of the best sites, including Antoni Gaudi’s masterpiece La Sagrada Familia, Parc Guell, the beautiful homes designed in Gaudi’s style, but it also has THE CHOCOLATE MUSEUM!
If you know me at all, you know that I am a chocoholic. I have to have at least a little piece every day. So, when I learned there was a chocolate museum in Barcelona, I made sure we went.

To get into the chocolate museum, you pay 5 euros and you get a chocolate bar ticket in return.

This chocolate lizard tried to eat me, so I was going to eat him first.

This is probably the best deal for a museum entrance fee ever. If all museums gave you chocolate upon entry, I would be a museumaholic too.

The museum takes you on the road to chocolate’s discovery and makes you need even more than the bar they give you to feel satiated.

Of course, not every one is a chocolate fan…(blasphemy!) and there are plenty of other amazing things to do in Barcelona and things to eat.

The Sardana is a type of circle dance typical of Catalonia, Spain.
At another delicious Barcelona restaurant.

We really enjoyed watching the Catalonian people dance the Sardana Saturday night in front of the Cathedral. It was amazing to see people put their bags in the center of a circle, join hands and enjoy the evening.

This picture pretty much sums up what I think of the people in Barcelona. They are kind, fun-loving people that just want to enjoy life like every other person on earth. And for them to share their beautiful city with me and my husband for a week was wonderful.

During our time there, we got to meet and chat with so many amazing people. I only wish we could have stayed longer to develop a friendship with them.

But don’t worry, Barcelona, we will be back.

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