Friday, October 16, 2015

Barcelona - Part 4 - Days 6, 7 and 8

Thanks for bearing with me for these lengthy recaps, this is the last one.  

On Thursday, we had breakfast at little cafe, and then walked over to the Parc de la Ciutadella which was pretty close to our apartment.  We didn't know how much was actually in this park, but it was pretty neat.   

I'm in the background

Carbs and espresso based coffees - our breakfast plan for the week

Some people were playing bocce ball on the boulevard while we were walking along, E stopped to watch.  They loved that he was there and waved at him.  A little note about that - Europeans really love children.  People always went of their way to talk to E or ruffle his hair or let him help with something.  I could definitely feel a different attitude to kids in Spain than in Toronto.

Stopping at another playground #posture

This is the Cascada fountain. Apparently Gaudi worked on this while he was still a student.  Also it was supposedly too boring when they first built it so they added the horses. 

Weirdly enough while we were on the fountain we saw a family that we had seen on the beach the day before, small world. 

Also in this park is a zoo so we decided to check it out.  It is smaller in size than the Toronto Zoo but has just as many animals.  E loved the zoo.  We saw lots of little kids on field trips, they were all so cute in the little uniforms. We were interested that the teachers spoke to the children in both Spanish and English. 

Komodo Dragon


The biggest turtle I've ever seen.  You can't really tell the size from this photo but it was huge!

Some of my favourites, the penguins

This little guy came right over to window when E showed up, he knew someone at his level.  At one point he put his bum up against the window so we told E to do the same thing.  I think they enjoyed each others company.

Domestic dispute in the lions' den.  

Hey that zebra is wearing a Jays hat!

This panorama is of the amazing playground in the zoo.  It had ziplines, a "rope course", and slides.  It was pretty neat. 

After the zoo we decided to go back to our neighbourhood to get some pizza. Then we grabbed an ice cream at Gocce di Latte where I had the best gelato I've ever had - coffee cardamom.  Seriously, can you think of a better combination?! This was a place recommended by our hostess and we were happy we checked it out.

This is typical of me, I'm holding our map, glasses and an ice cream. I always had a million things in my hands.

We continued our little "food tour" to this cookie shop, Demasie.  They had some really cute cookies, decorated with dye, rather than icing.  We all got one. 

While I'm on the theme of food, one thing I forgot to mention in an earlier post, is the candy store we went to called Papabubble. They make the cutest little candies that are truly works of art.

After that I left Dave and E at home I went for a little walk to check out a few more food places.  I went to Vila Viniteca.  They have a wine store and a small grocery store with a butcher.  I wanted to buy something but was too overwhelmed.

We planned to go to Sagrada Familia on a late afternoon.  Our apartment was about 2 km from the church so we decided to walk rather than take the subway.  On our way we passed the Arc de Triomf

I knew that we would have to visit Sagrada Familia when we were in Barcelona but I really had no idea what it was all about other than it was still under construction.  When you think about the scope of this project and the beauty contained within, it is somewhat overwhelming.  It is almost a shame that so many people are in it on a daily basis, there is nothing really sacred about it if it is "just" another tourist destination, is there?  When we went to Rome we visited the Vatican at about 7:00 am and I really enjoyed that.  Perhaps if there was an opportunity to be at Sagrada Familia without all the people, then I would have felt the same way.

This photo can never do the light justice, it was so beautiful.  A late afternoon visit offered a shorter wait time as well as this light.

That day we recorded 19,000 steps on the pedometers on our iPhones.  It was a long day!  We decided to go back to Mosquito for supper.  Then we went home watch Game 1 of the Jays-Rangers series courtesy of the MLB At Bat app.

Photo from our dinner at Mosquito.  

The next morning we ate breakfast at Taller de Tapas, which was pretty good, although our waitress seemed to hate her life.  

I also love that they serve orange juice for a child in a wine glass

Then we got on the subway and went to the funicular up to Montjuic. This mountain at the south end of Barcelona was named for a Jewish cemetery.  It also was the site of many executions during the Spanish Civil War during the 1930s, but still a beautiful view of the city... After the funicular we got on the cable car up to the top (another rookie mistake, buying a round trip cable car ticket when we had already decided to walk down the mountain).

E loves a cable car!

Again, the photo does not really do this view justice

A telecommunications tour but was built to look like the Olympic flame

Olympic Stadium for the 1992 Olympics

This view is from the Art Gallery 

Very keen on leading the way with the guidebook

Stopped for lunch at Tapa Tapa near the Las Arenas mall.

For supper we went to La Paradeta for supper.  This was highly recommended by several people and we had high hopes when we saw the long line up that had formed even before the place opened.  The idea of this restaurant is that you choose the type of seafood that you want, tell them how you want it cooked and then they prepare it for you.  It is a pretty casual place, which can be good or bad.  We ended up choosing the lobster for me, the tuna for Dave, and the cuttlefish for E.  We all liked our food but didn't love it.  Maybe we are slightly biased since we are from the East Coast of Canada and grew up with lots of fresh seafood.

E's choice

E probably enjoyed his meal the most

The next morning we went to Milk for brunch.  It could have been any restaurant in Toronto, but it was pretty great.  I love a plate of eggs Benedict so I was happy.  

After brunch we walked up Placa de Sant Josep Oriol to buy some art.  This is the thing we usually buy when we are on vacation.  Even though we end up spending more on the frame than the actual painting, it is something we can enjoy everyday. We also walked by Cathedral de Barcelona before going home to get ready for an afternoon at the beach.

On our way we found little chorizos being sold in a cone. 

For supper, we went to Lonja de Tapas where we ordered some traditional paella and sangria.

This was right next door to the ice cream place so Dave and I got ice creams (this time I had coconut, lime and cilantro, amazing), but E opted for a popsicle. 

The next morning we ate at Bubo again (same breakfast, same server), and then we went to the airport.  E said he was happy to go home to see his own toys and bed.  It was a pretty successful trip.  Can't wait to plan the next one - Belgium? Germany? Scotland? Iceland? Costa Rica? Argentina? Who knows?!

See the post about our accommodations here
Days 1, 2 and 3 here
Days 4 and 5 here

Linking up with AndreaErika and Narci for Friday Favourites (because travelling is my favourite!).


  1. What a great trip! You described everything so interestingly! I enjoyed reading about each day....the food, the sights and seeing your truly lovely family photos! Thanks!

  2. I heard that Switzerland isn't much fun or tourist-friendly. Probably a good call leaving it off the list. : (

    1. Haha Kevin, very funny! I was only naming new countries we have never visited. If we do another euro trip it will definitely include La Suisse!

  3. What an amazing trip you had and what an awesome traveller E is!!!!
    Love the detailed post-- Barcelona is on my list so I'll be coming back to read again and get some tips when I do decide to visit!!