Tuesday, April 19

Make the Most of Your Trip: Tips for Touring Barcelona

Barcelona is a seductive seaside city with dreamlike landmarks that hold historic secrets deep within their walls. The avant-garde city hosts a labyrinth of twisting streets that are home to Gothic-inspired architecture, award-winning restaurants, boisterous bars and elegant hotels.
When visiting, make the most of your trip by following these tips to touring Barcelona.
What to See
Discover the city of Barcelona on foot or bicycle to get the authentic feel for its charming streets. Las Ramblas is the landmark many tourists identify with the city. The central boulevard cuts through the heart of the city and is an ideal place to begin exploring. Its vibrant and lively promenade is a must visit during the daylight hours. You’ll be right near the Gothic Quarter, as well, which is another must see.
With Antoni Gaudí as its legendary architect, Barcelona is blanketed with Art Nouveau sites and fascinating modernista buildings. Don’t miss:
·         La Pedrera
·         Parc Guell
·         La Sagrada Familia
Picasso plays an integral part in Barcelona’s art scene, as well. Walk down C/Reina Cristina to visit landmarks that shaped his youth. Visit the Museu Picasso to see some of the work from his formative years.
What to Eat
Pinchos (pintxo), tapas and vermouth top the list of Barcelona’s culinary trends. Tapas is the general term for small dishes in Spain and they are meant to be shared, whether it's a bowl of olives or a plate of grilled prawns. Raciones are a bigger portion of tapas, and pinchos are bite-sized tapas served on top of a piece of bread.
There are countless tapas bars around the city, so pop into one along your journey. If you don’t know what to order, get the Pan con Tomate, which is a quintessential Catalan tapa composed of tomato rubbed on bread and drizzled with oil and salt. Sip on cava, vermouth or Txacoli (a light white wine) with your tapas.
Do not leave the city without sampling the seafood, either.
Where to Stay
Barcelona lodging can get pricey, so travel with others and share rooms when possible to save some money. There are several mid-range hotels in the city. Look for a place in the Eixample area to be near to the modernista scene and close to shops, restaurants and tourist landmarks. If you want a more luxurious stay, the Hotel Arts Barcelona is beachside and fancy. If you’re more into the neighborhood feel, Gracia is a good option. It's close to Park Guell, but you will need to take the metro into the city center.
Another option is a hostel, also called an albergue in Barcelona. Hostels tend to pack bunk beds into a room so be prepared to get cozy with your roommates. Bathrooms are also shared. It can get a bit noisy, but if you want a cheap room, this is your best bet. Do your research before choosing a location as some pockets around Las Ramblas and in the Barri Gotic can be a little sketchy at night.
How to Stay Safe
As with any city in the world, tourists need to safeguard their belongings. In Barcelona, be especially cautious of pick pocketing and bag snatching, advises the Barcelona Tourist Guide. Don’t walk down Las Ramblas with an open map, looking lost and bags unguarded. You know how to be a savvy tourist:
·         Pay attention to your surroundings. If something doesn’t seem right or if a group of locals are trying to gain your attention, walk away. It may be a ruse.
·         Only carry the money you need for the day and leave valuables at the hotel. No flashy jewelry.
·         Wear belongings on your front side and close to your body. Avoid shoulder purses unless they are crossbody bags.
·         Don’t wear a camera around your neck. Thieves will snatch that right off you and take off before you even know what happened. Instead, use a high-quality camera phone with a large memory for pictures and video. The new LG G5 has a 5.3-inch Quad HD screen with a high-contrast display that makes video and images look spectacular. It also has a LG 360 degree cam attachment that is a perfect way to capture the panorama of the city.
Lastly, if you want to impress the locals in Barcelona, learn to speak their language, Catalan, which is derived from Latin and Provençal French. In comparison, Castilian (Castellano) Spanish has heavy Arabic influences.


OpenID photoriga.com said...

Vow, you can scare off tourists with such articles :) All the other suggestions seemes normal but the suggestion to not take a normal photo camera to such a photogenic city.. You advise to take photos of Barcelona's "dreamlike landmarks" with a... mobile phone! I mean, wtf? :) What serious photographers do in Barcelona then? Only strolling around in large groups or with police? ;) Here in Eastern Europe, Riga, the situation is much better - you can walk around and take photos with a pro camera.

11:22 AM  

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