Highlights from Barcelona, the sunny, vibrant coastal Spanish city.
I named this post ‘Beautiful Barcelona’ because I cannot stress enough how amazingly beautiful this city was. The weather, the nightlife, the architecture, the food; literally everything was beautiful in both the tangible and intangible sense.
First of all, the weather was surprisingly gorgeous for the middle of wintertime. Despite the somewhat chilly temperature, Mother Nature blessed us with bright blue skies and vibrantly saturated sunsets. As the glowing sunlight embraced my skin, its warmth also enhanced my mood and lifted my spirits (not that my spirits were low, but living in London does make seeing the sun a very special occasion). Whether on the top of Park Guell or on the shore of the beach, the Barcelona sun followed us like a loyal companion and made our trip physically beautiful and emotionally heartwarming.
The nightlife also entertained my cousin and I in tangible and intangible ways. One night, we decided to embark on our own bar crawl, where we simply walked from bar to bar sampling different wines and engaging in drunk, sappy, cousin conversations. But every wine we tried in different bars was exquisite. I usually prefer Italian wine, but the dry, fruity, white Spanish wines definitely impressed me. In addition to the great drinks, every bar we attended had friendly and welcoming staff members who were willing to practice Spanish with us. And if anyone was annoyed by our slightly intoxicated, overly eager American college student excitement, then they didn’t show it. Everyone we met was polite, genuine, and hospitable.
Another highlight of Barcelona was the architecture, primarily that of Antoni Gaudi. From the Sagrada Familia, to Park Guell, to Casa Batilo, to La Pedrera, every building designed by this creative genius represented an eccentric masterpiece of aesthetic incredulity and unparalleled artistry. Gaudi’s work definitely showed physical beauty, but learning about his inspiration and his creative methods was fascinating. Architecture generally deals with inorganic materials and logic, but Gaudi infused his work with elements of nature and brought life, passion, and movement to his buildings. It was incredible to learn about how strongly the city of Barcelona admired and respected him, and no other architecture I’ve seen can compare to his work.
Obviously this post needs a section about food, since anyone who knows me is aware of how much I love food. But all of the meals we had in Barcelona were fabulous. We ate lots of chocolate, lots of tapas, lots of toasted bread with tomato and olive oil, and lots of brunch. And by ‘lots of brunch’, I mean we went to a restaurant called ‘Brunch and Cake’ three times in two days. This quirky little food shop served the most creative dishes that were prepared with immense care and served in impeccable presentation, causing the food to taste heavenly and bring us great joy. Again, a delicious and photogenic meal also represented an intangibly wonderful eating experience.
Although the word ‘beautiful’ may be predictable and overused, I can’t think of a better way to describe the vibrant and captivating yet peaceful and gorgeous city of Barcelona. Complete with energetic people, palm trees, spacious parks, busy shopping streets, beach-side cafes and street markets by the pier, Barcelona was full of life and brought me sheer joy and happiness.