Another Christmas break, another epic trip for the books! Jeff and I got engaged in Paris on Christmas day exactly 5 years ago so we debated wether to go back or to explore somewhere new which as you can tell, we opted for option #2 and went to Barcelona, Spain for the holidays! I didn’t expect to fall in love with Barcelona so quickly. If I were to describe it in just a few words it would be: vibrant, fun, busy and party town. I really loved the fact that 99% of the shops and restaurants are open late night and very happening even during Christmas Day and New Year’s Eve which is every rare in Europe.
We also decided to spend 9 full days just in Barcelona because we wanted to take our time, relax and take it all in. It’s no secret that jet-lag alone takes a few days out of your trip anyway so by the time we were adjusted to the local time we still had a whole week to explore and enjoy everything the city has to offer. There is so much to see!
1.) La Sagrada Familia
2.) Park Guell
3.) Gothic Quarter
4.) Las Ramblas
5.) Port Vell Marina
There are many more attractions to see and experience but I wanted to share what I personally enjoyed the most. The list would go on forever if I were to focus on everything we saw but everything else you’ll naturally run into or end up seeing just by walking around and exploring the main areas of the city.
We decided to split our stay in two different hotels in order to experience the city from different points of view. This was seriously the best decision made! It’s now something I highly recommend to anyone visiting any city for more than a week. It gives you access to so many more little streets and areas you wouldn’t come across otherwise if you had to always go back to one exact location during your entire stay.
For our 1st half of the trip we chose to stay at The Serras Hotel which was the #1 hotel suggested by most sites, with amazing reviews. We loved it! It’s a boutique hotel located by the marina. A great area to stay in, to walk around and enjoy amazing seafood and paella. Only a few blocks away from Las Ramblas in case you want to see a little more action. The amazing staff will treat you as a friend and make you feel right at home. Not to mention their beds are the same brand as the one used by the Royal Family, obviously highly approved by ME, the other (sleeping) Queen.
For our 2nd half of the trip we decided to stay at The ALMANAC hotel. A beautiful hotel located in the midst of the Eixample area in the center of Barcelona. This area is basically the epicenter of all the Luxury brands and the best of shopping in the city. So, if shopping is something you’re looking forward to when visiting Barcelona I definitely recommend staying here. Only a few steps aways from all of my favorite brands! The Almanac is also known for their endless breakfast spread, I have to say, it exceeded my expectations. Jeff and I are coffee snobs and we agreed that the coffee we had every morning while staying here was the best we’ve ever had on any vacation. This is a big statement but also a true one.
If there’s one thing Barcelona has lots of is definitely restaurants & bars. Endless options for all sorts of taste or preference. You can find anything from local food such as paella to Mexican, Italian, Indian, you name it. We actually ended up really enjoying all of the Argentinian restaurants we found. Fun fact: I’m half Argentinian so I was obviously extra happy! These are some of the spots we loved:
Jaime Beriestain Cafe
Witty at The Wittmore
La Encina Seleccion
I really wish I had more photos of all of the amazing food we ate but that just shows how much I enjoyed the food and being present so this will have to do haha. I can’t believe we thought that 9 days in Barcelona was going to be too much. Oh, we were wrong! I would go back in a heartbeat just to continue eating my way through the city and drink all the vino!
Nine amazing days went by so fast but at the same it felt like we were able to take it all in and enjoy the moment. There’s no better feeling than not being rushed during vacation and that was exactly our mission, to enjoy the trip at our pace. I can’t wait to go back to Spain and maybe explore other beautiful cities such as Madrid and Sevilla (cue the flamenco music!). But for now, I would love to know if you’ve ever been to Spain or even if you’re planning on going anytime soon. Let me know in the comments below.