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Written on: Sunday February 25th, 2007

A journal entry from: Rouen

Just spent an amazing week in the beautiful city of Barcelona, Spain.

I arrived in Barcelona in the late afternoon and met my parents in Placa Catalyuna, that was easier said then done because I have no knowledge of the Spanish language. However, I finally found my father at Placa Catalyuna and we headed to our hotel located on Las Ramblas.  After dropping off my luggage in the hotel we headed for a little afternoon walk down Las Ramblas. I liked Las Ramblas at first because it is very pretty. Las Ramblas is a kilometer long street that connects the hubs of Placa Catalyuna with Port Vell where the Christopher Columbus monument is located. It is lines with trees and cafes and street vendors and street performers.  With the sun beaming down along the path, I admit I initially fell in love.  We walked down La Ramblas toward Port Vell and took some pictures of the Christopher Columbus monument.  It was a gorgeous day and I couldnt believe that it was February and I was wearing a skirt and sandals, despite several glances from the Spanish.  At Port Vell we found a place that offered a boat ride along the beach and decided we would take it the next day.  Also on Port Vell there is the Ramblas de Mar which is a pedestrian bridge that connects to a shopping mall and cinema.  The bridge was shaped in undulating wave patterns.  After walking along the Port we headed back to the Hotel.  I took a nice non-French shower and took a nap.  After this my parents and I headed back onto La Rambla to search for some dinner.  The Spaniards do not eat dinner until very late ( around 9pm!) So we walked to Port Vell and took then headed back up La Rambla to find some food. This is when I started to get a little annoyed with La Ramblas.  It got pretty crowded and since i dont deal with crowds, I started to like La Ramblas less and less. Looking for restaurants I notices there were tons of Tapas bars.  tapas are mini appetizer bars that are widespread throughout Spain.  We found one restaurant and ordered several tapas including some of my favorite spanish iberic ham, calamari, potatoes and a paella dish.  I didnt eat much of the paella because I dont like sefood too much, but the meal was pretty good.  After this we headed back to the hotel and went to bed.

We started off the day with some Spanish croissants that definitely did not compare to the buttery French croissants. After breakfast we headed back to Port Vell to take the boat ride along Barcelona's coast.  Once on the water, it was very windy and chilly but it offered some great views of the city and the coast of the city.  After about two hours on the boat we arrived back and port vell and we walked along the port boardwalk toward Parc de la Citudella.  We were trying to find a market there but were unable to find it so we had some lunch which was very good.  I had some boccadillos which are tiny baguette like sandwhiches with ham and other fillings and I had some pasta.  We wandered around the Parc de la Citudella which is close to the Arc de Triomfe which is a smaller more colorful reproduction of the Arc de Triomphe in Paris. After this we wandered along the streets between Parc de la Citudella and Las Ramblas.