Our maiden trip to Europe turned out to be fantastic! We didn’t have loads of time to spend in each city but I think it was just enough to visit all the touristy places, get a feel of the place and enjoy some food and drink. We had 11 days in all to visit four wonderful cities – Barcelona, Paris, Venice and Rome. And although March was a bit cold, it still was good as it meant less crowding at attractions. Also, this was a budget trip which meant budget stays and using the public transport as much as possible and it suited me just fine. On popular demand, I’m sharing my itinerary for the trip starting with Barcelona. Will follow-up with the other three cities in the next few posts.
3 days in Barcelona, Spain
Day 1: arrived in Barcelona early morning. Immigration was quick and got taxi easily at the airport. Metro is also available but we were tired after a 17 hour journey from Singapore. Checked-in, had breakfast and took a quick nap. Then walked to the neighborhood area for some relaxed lunch and coffee. In the evening took the Metro to Placa Catalunya and walked upto Las Ramblas and shopped some – mostly clothes from Spanish brands – Zara, Mango etc. Then strolled around some at Las Ramblas, purchased souvenirs and went to the popular La Boqueria market. Finally, relaxed over some tapas and dinner. Quite enjoyed the area with its hive of activity, people and cafes.
Day 2: Headed out to visit Sagrada Familia after breakfast. Advisable to book in advance online to avoid queuing. This is a must visit, the outside and the inside are both spectacular and there is also a small museum. We must have spent about 2.5 hours there. Then had some amazing Paella for lunch, strolled around at Passeig de gracia and saw one of Gaudi’s buildings there – Casa Battlo. Later in the evening visited the Gothic quarters and the Gothic cathedral. Loved it here with its alleyways. The gothic cathedral is beautiful as well and no entry free to go in.
Day 3: Checked out and left our luggage at the hotel. Hopped onto the hop-on, hop-off city tour bus and enjoyed the places and the city views from the open top deck. Got down at barceloneta beach for a short while to soak in the view. Took the bus again and hopped off at Tibidabo. We took a special service tram to get to the train stop which takes you to the top of Mt. Tibidabo. This was good fun and the views from the top were great too. There are rides to enjoy there and also a cathedral.
Came back down and stopped at Placa Espanya and went upto the observation deck at Arenas de Barcelona and took in the views of the two towers, fira de Barcelona, fountains and the museum nacional. Then walked upto the museum but didn’t have time to go in. This area is also quite nice and offers a nice city view. Late afternoon headed back to the hotel, collected our luggage and then took the Metro to Barcelona Sants train station to catch our high-speed rail to Paris!
Here is a map with what we covered: