As anticipated in last month's post, I went to Barcelona for a few days at the beginning of May, before peak touristic season actually stroke - in Paris and Barcelona alike. Good idea for me, both as a guide and a tourist.
Believe it or not, it was a first time for me in one of the most visited cities on earth. I had heard so much about it and had pretty high expectations. Turns out the capital of Catalonia was totally up to my projections, I wasn't disappointed at all and had a great time.
The occasion for the trip was actually celebrating one year of friendship with Pippo & Chicco (ain't that cute?? :)). Three complete strangers, we met on a night train to Italy at the beginning of May 2018, and judging on the unforgettable night spent at the train's bar laughing like we'd known each other for years, we were sure we were onto something. So it was: at 5.30 AM we were having breakfast together with cappuccio e brioche at Milan's central station. Then each one of us headed his own way (Cremona, Bologna, Padova), but we kept in touch thanks to a WhatsApp group and met again once we returned back to Paris where we all live. And so unexpectedly these guys have become some of the best buddies I've had around for the past year.
As far as vacations go, we turned out to be a winning team, as I motivated them to visit more and they made sure we never missed a fair amount of chill time with tapas and sangria. And Barcelona is great for both, of course. Bingo.
Apart from specific sites that we visited and loved, the best surprises were the ones we randomly stumbled upon while strolling around kind of getting lost, as it often happens. We also had some precious insiders suggestions, since I have a cousin living there and Pippo has a friend from Valencia with a very trained eye for spying out the best tapas spots.
Up here the Maritime Museum down by the harbor, a wire sculpture reflecting on a stone façade in the Gothic quarter, the view over the city's skyline at dusk from my cousin's terrace, with the Gothic spire and towers interlacing with aerials, and an orange tree that just made me happy.
Here are Pippo and his friend in this magical terrace that we found nested in the web of crooked streets of the Gothic quarter. And at the end of the same narrow street we stumbled right in front of the Palau de la música catalana, a modernist style concert hall whose façade, decorated with all sorts of ceramics, is an explosion of colors. Hard to get it with my 50mm lens with no possibility to step backwards.
Hope you're all having a great summer, with sunshine, apricots, swimming, daydreaming and all things good with the season. I've been working plenty - but after Barcelona there was another short escapade I'll tell you about later on... Until then, à tantôt les amis !