Wednesday, July 16, 2014


And now for our final destination...Barcelona!

Friday morning Heidi and I made our final departure from Ms. Biester's Burgerstube at about 8:00 am.  Mr. Okul, our cab driver, drove us to the small Dusseldorf Weeze airport, which was almost two hours because of all the traffic in the morning. 

Our flight from Weeze to Girona airport in Spain was almost two hours.  We were a little worried about paying extra costs because we flew RyanAir, but all was good and we got through without having to pay any extras. 

Once we arrived in hot hot Spain, we grabbed our luggage and headed for the bus from Girona to Barcelona.  The bus and metro travel was about another two hours, so we were happy when we finally got settled in our hostel and to exploring the beautiful city of Barcelona. 

We wandered around, looked at stores and markets, and checked out Las Ramblas and the boats and beaches along the water. 
Dinner at La Poma

Spaniards love their fish


Interesting goodies at the market

Rambla del mar

Playas de Barcelona- beach!

Saturday morning, we hit the markets early so that we could get a little walking and shopping in before a walking tour at 11am.  

Walking Las Ramblas

Unfortunately, the walking tour was a no-go because there were no architecture student tour guides with orange umbrellas at La Catalunya like the flyer said... Maybe we shouldn't have relied on a Saturday morning tour led by university students. 

Since we didn't make it on a tour, we grabbed some snacks from the market, bought some towels, and headed to the beach a little bit earlier than planned.  

The beach was beautiful!  But a little too packed.

After a few hours at the beach, we tried for another walking tour at 4:30pm.  We met at Placa Reial, then learned more about the old gothic city. 

Eglesia de Santa Maria del Pi

Another market! We loved these dishes

Plaza de Sant Felip Neri

Now we are dressed appropriately to enter the church

Catedral de Barcelona

Barcelona city hall

Castellers- forming human towers

We ran into a little dance routine, a Saturday night tradition outside the Barcelona cathedral- 

After the tour, I introduced Heidi to paella, which may now be one of her favorites. 

Paella for dinner

After dinner, we stopped by the few markets and stores that were still open.

Sunday morning was a little cloudy and drizzly, but perfect for a run.
Exploring Barcelona

Since we so enjoyed our tour from the day before, we decided to go with the same company and try the Gaudi walking tour.  

Watching the Polish dancers at Placa Reial while waiting for our tour

Fountain of 3 Graces- Placa Reial

Checking out Palau Guell on our tour

Gaudi House 

La Padrera

Segrada Familia

Segrada  Familia

After the tour, we grabbed some lunch and then headed up the funicular to the Montjuic Castle.  The castle didn't offer much itself, besides cannons and great views of Barcelona and the Mediterranean! 

Heading up to Castle Montjuic

Castle Montjuic

Great views of Barcelona!

We headed back down to Barcelona, and took a free tour off the Palau Guell that our tour guide had suggested earlier that day. 

Touring Palau Guell

After the Palau Guell house tour, we walked the winding streets off Las Ramblas. 

Monday was another beach day, but instead of staying at the crazy Barcelona beach, we headed to the cute town of Sitges about 35 minutes away for a beautiful and less crowded beach. 

Arriving to Sitges

Sitges, Spain

The beach sand and waves were way better compared to Barcelona beach, but we still ran into salespeople and even more topless women on the beach. 

Sitges Beach

After we laid on the beach for about three hours, the wind started to die down and we escaped the heat by wandering the streets to shop and eat. 

Testing out a caipirinha

We headed back on the train from Sitges to Barcelona to make some final purchases before heading home on Tuesday :(

Leaving Barcelona for home this morning was bittersweet- although we were not sad to leave the hostel, our European adventure was ending.  We made it to the Aerobus with our 7 bags and to the airport with plenty of time to spare before taking off.

Buhbye Barcelona

I'm sad to be leaving Europe, but with more unique experiences behind me I am excited for home sweet home, family and friends, and the red white and blue!, just in time for her 238th birthday.