Ah Barcelona!  I don’t know how to even write this post adequately.  My heart overflows.  Barcelona is HUGE and the metro system is extensive and incredible.  It took us forever to find out hostel but it was very nice once we did.  We stayed in an apartment style room with 2 bunk beds and its own kitchen and bathroom near the Gaudi Cathedral.  The weather was lovely the whole time.  One of my great regrets is not taking a day trip to Figueres to see the Dali Museum but there’s always next time (and there will be a next time).

We went to see the La Sagrada Familia (the Gaudi cathedral) but didn’t have time to wait in the giant line until another day.  Once we finally went, I was blown away.  So from the outside it is pretty cool, but I first thought it was a little too crazy and ridiculous.  Once we were inside and learned more about it, though, I changed my mind.  The inside it amazing.  Really truly absolutely amazing.  The cathedral has been under construction since 1882 and isn’t expected to be finished until 2026.  Gaudi died in 1926 and during the Spanish Civil War his plans and workshop were almost entirely destroyed.  But they have done a pretty incredible job reconstructing his original intentions.  Gaudi was a genius.  Really.  The mathematics and references to nature are unbelievable.  The acoustics, the lighting, the columns, everything.  I can’t wait to go back and see its progress.

We walked around the main street one morning/afternoon and saw some really incredible street performers as well as the best market in all of Europe.  Unfortunately we got there right at closing time.  It was colorful and busy and there were a ton of stand selling every juice combination imaginable.  I love juice!  We bought some fruit and hit the beach.  The waves in Barcelona were probably some of the biggest we saw anywhere.  The water was perfect, it was sandy (not rocky), and warm warm warm.  

One night we found a theater showing Toy Story 3…in 3D…in English!  How lucky for us!  That movie was great.

We ate at all sorts of places in Barcelona, and all of it was delicious.  One night we went to the Barcelona Pipa Club, a bar with a pretty awesome collection of Sherlock Holmes-style pipes.  Everyone we had talked to elsewhere in Europe made Barcelona sound like a place for parties and only parties, until 7 a.m. etc etc…we were not down for that. So we arrived in Barcelona expecting not to like it, expecting it to really not be for us.  But as I said, it’s a big city, so while I am sure all that went on we never even noticed.

We took the bus out to Park Guell, designed by Gaudi.  The views of the city from there are fantastic and the park itself is very charming with its fountains and gingerbread houses.  We were there right as the sun disappeared.

(just to the right of the top point of the house on the left you can see the towers of Sagrada Familia)

I’m sure I’m missing important moments and exciting experiences but I will say that I never expect to love a place like I love Barcelona.  It has this feeling about it, this spirit.  As I said, I don’t know how to explain it.  I would live here…I hope I can live here.