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Family, Traveling

A tourist’s guide to Barcelona: Gaudi, Mountjuic & Quimet Quimet

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.

Gaudi: 

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!)

Just after entering the park.

Just after entering the park.

Max and I in Park Guell

Max and I in Park Guell

A covered walkway that looked like the inside of a wave in shape.

A covered walkway that looked like the inside of a wave in shape.

By the iconic lizard in Park Guell

By the iconic lizard in Park Guell

Park Guell

One of Guadi's homes next to the park.

One of Guadi’s homes next to the park.

Overlooking the park.

Overlooking the park.

Park Guell

Park Guell

Mountjuic:

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.

Max outside the Palau National

Max outside the Palau National

One of the parks on the way up Mountjuic

One of the parks on the way up Mountjuic

A gun from the fortress.

A gun from the fortress.

Looking out over the mediterranian from the fortress.

Looking out over the Mediterranean from the fortress.

A sculpture outside the Miro musuem.

A sculpture outside the Miro museum.

Quimet Quimet: 

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.

The outside of Quimet Quimet

The outside of Quimet Quimet

Cava, stuffed olives, smoked salmon with cheese and honey truffle oil, shaved beef with olive tapenade and tomatoes, smoked archovies with goat cheese, oyster with tomatoes - these were just a few of the delicious tapas we enjoyed here.

Cava, stuffed olives, smoked salmon with cheese and honey truffle oil, shaved beef with olive tapenade and tomatoes, smoked anchovies with goat cheese, oyster with tomatoes – these were just a few of the delicious tapas we enjoyed here.

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Discussion

3 thoughts on “A tourist’s guide to Barcelona: Gaudi, Mountjuic & Quimet Quimet

  1. You managed to make it all seem very real again. Quimet, Quimet. Again, Again and yet Again. Love you.

    Posted by Pat Altenburger | January 13, 2014, 4:28 pm
  2. The buildings look like you were in a more grown up version of Disney Land! They are enchanting, so beautiful!

    Posted by michelle | January 13, 2014, 7:11 pm

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