Must-See Barcelona: Tips from an A&K Expert
Jeremy has over 25 years of travel experience in Europe, several of them spent in the Catalan capital of Barcelona. When we asked him for the inside scoop on Spain’s must-see city, he revealed his personal short list.
What makes Barcelona so unique?
It is a Mediterranean-situated city, renowned for its Modernist architecture, which is inspired by Antoni Gaudí and reflected in singular buildings, such as the unfinished Sagrada Familia church. However, its history dates back to the Romans, so there is amazing, diverse architecture that spans 2,000 years.
What Barcelona architecture do you consider exemplary?
Most visitors head right for icons like the Sagrada Familia, Parc Güell, La Pedrera and Casa Battló.
However, another architectural must-see is the Palau de la Música Catalana, one of the world’s best concert venues. The interior is spectacular.
What’s your favorite Barcelona neighborhood and why?
I enjoy strolling around the maze of narrow, winding, pedestrian streets in the Gothic Quarter. You can explore specialty boutiques that feature rack after rack of the latest fashions, and you can find pastries and cookies that are made — even today — by orders of nuns.
Describe your favorite dining experience in the city.
Nothing beats sitting at the counter of a tapas bar and watching the flurry of activity around you. My favorite is Ciudad Condal, just north of Plaça de Catalunya. I get the Galician-style octopus (pulpo Gallego), which is baked in the oven, sprinkled with paprika and served on a wooden board with potatoes and pimientos de Padrón, small green peppers that are fried in olive oil and served with salt. Every one in 10 is said to be a hot one, so there’s an element of “Spanish roulette” at play.
Jeremy’s Picks in Barcelona
Neighborhood or Street
The Gothic Quarter
Ciudad Condal, http://www.yelp.com/biz/ciudad-condal-barcelona
Ramblas or the Olympic marina
Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya, http://www.museunacional.cat/en