After a very uncomfortable night in the hotel (the air conditioning was broken, which was awful in such a humid place!) we left the room as quickly as we could to explore the city. We booked the HLG Citypark Sant Just hotel and when I mentioned the broken air conditioning the next morning, they were already aware of the issue but never mentioned it to us. Needless to say they weren’t too bothered about it, and said they would try move us into another room when we arrived home from our day in the city. I stayed in this hotel before a few years ago and it was pretty good at the time but sadly it has really gone down hill in the past few years and I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone.
After stocking up on the essentials, we walked leisurely around the city with no particular plans in mind. Niall has never been to Barcelona before but he’s a pretty laid back guy so this plan suited both of us!
We got off the metro at the Plaça de Catalunya and from there walked around Barcelona’s Cathedral and it’s surrounding markets. I loved strolling around aimlessly to see what we would come across, as we were both tired and it was hot, hot, hot! Not that I’m complaining – I love the heat and Salamanca is incredibly warm at the moment. The difference is the crazy humidity in Barcelona, Salamanca is just pure heat.
We made a few stops for wine and beer (naturally) while I took a picture of a tasty looking octopus in a little bodega situated on a quiet and narrow little street.
Soon we realised our strolling had led us back to familiar territory, we were very close to Restaurante Montiel from the night before. The area where the restaurant is situated is simply beautiful, so we stopped on a nice corner pub called Paddy’s Lane (here we go again!) for some fantastic mojitos, my drink of choice for our entire trip. I flicked through a little guide on Barcelona while we refreshed ourselves with a fan by our sides. The girl behind the bar here told me to beware of my things, as did some friends at home. This happened a few times during our trip, as I have a tendency to put my phone on the table in front of me. We found no issues with our belongings but I’m passing the warning on!
I love my new phone cover. I got it on eBay for less than €5. It comes in plenty of different colours and if you’re clumsy and drop your phone a lot, this cover protects everything.
We left Paddy’s Lane in very merry moods and walked along the pier. There’s a great aquarium a little bit out from the dock. When the sky quickly became overcast, crowds of families were going in and out to visit L’Aquarium Barcelona by way of the De La Fusta bridge.
Along the pier the Christopher Columbus monument resides. Sorry the images aren’t great, it really was a seriously overcast evening!
Feeling a little hungry, we decided to walk along La Rambla which leads back to the Plaça de Catalunya in search for some tapas and wine to end our day.
Anchovies with olive oil, black olives and cherry tomatoes.
Mussels and peppers
Spanish sausage (there were plates of chorizo too, which were larger in size but they disappeared quickly!)
Grilled octopus and fried potatoes
Goats cheese on fried bread with currants and peppers.
Displays of Iberian ham, calamari and octopus displayed outside the bar.
After delicious and very filling tapas, we walked back toward our metro line, right off the Plaça de Catalunya. We sat at the Zurich cafe to people watch, where I had yet another mojito. (I’m not so much a fan of these machine ones though!)
It started to rain just as I took my last sip, which was perfect timing to make our way into the station for our journey home.
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