At the end of December I left Moldova for the first time since June and traveled to Barcelona to meet my mother and brother for a vacation. Over the course of six days we saw a lot of the city, ate quite a few delicious meals and had a wonderful time. During the trip I did not keep a daily log, so I’ll update you all on the trip by sharing the highlights, in the form of a few of short travel guides to the city.
Antoni Gaudi is the father of an architectural style called Catalan Modernism. Many (most) of his works are in the Catalan region of Spain, and while we were in Barcelona we explored a lot of them. His buildings spark the imagination and look like something out of a children’s story. We saw what is considered his masterpiece, Sagrada Família, the street lights he designed, that were his first works, two of his homes and my personal favorite, Park Guell.
I would say they’re all worth seeing, but really you can’t walk around Barcelona without running into Gaudi’s work. Park Guell is a UNESCO world heritage site and one of the largest architectural works in Europe, but was originally designed to be part of a housing developement. It is definitely worth a walk through, but I wish we’d been there when it was less crowded and we would have been able to enjoy it more. (Seems like it’d be a great picnic spot!)
This hill overlooking the city is the home to Palau National, Fundacio Joan Miro and a castle, Montjuic Castle. One morning we walked over and hiked up the hill, past the impressive Palau National, to tour the castle and Miro museum.
Luckily we had a beautiful afternoon for this walk and we got to enjoy a lot of time walking around the Fortress and Castle, before heading to the Miro museum. The Miro museum was founded by Joan Miro himself to encourage young artists to experiment with contemporary artwork. The extensive Miro collection was interesting and inspiring – similar to Gaudi’s work in its childlike qualities. If you’ve got the time, spending a day exploring Mountjuic is definitely a must do in Barcelona.
I will devote an entire entry later to the food in Barcelona, but one restaurant in particular deserves an individual mention. This restaurant, Quimet Quimet is a little tough to find and out of the touristy center of the city. Quimet Quimet is located roughly at the base of Mountjuic, if you’re walking down from the Miro museum. We had a little trouble finding it, but I am glad we continued looking because it was by far the best meal we had.
When we found finally came across it, the restaurant was packed. It’s actually not really a restaurant, there are no chairs and its one small room. You enter and stand, either at the bar, outside with a glass of cava (spanish champagne) or at one of the three small table and walk to the bar to order.
We managed to wait only a few minutes for a spot at the bar and were able to order quickly. The service was exceptional and the food was AMAZING. While we ate a lot of delicious meals in Barcelona, the flavors, combinations and presentation of each of the tapas we had at Quimet Quimet was a masterpiece. I would strongly encourage everyone who travels to or through Barcelona to stop here.