This was our room, in yes, a hostel in Barcelona! We visited Barcelona during the beginning of high season and given we were staying in Europe for 3.5 weeks, a combination of factors came into play--including budget. The Gracia neighborhood of Barcelona is a popular one, with lots of cafes, tapas restaurants, the Segrada Familia and beach within walking distance and, of course, night life! While I wouldn't normally consider a hostel, Generator Hostel allows you to select the choice of a private room, private bath and balcony all at a cost cheaper than a hotel or apartment. Laundry facilities are also within the property.
As you can see the bathroom is colorful; our balcony was a large one with two chairs. The power outlets are not compatible with anything you use in the U.S.A. so make sure you purchase a converter that is compatible with the configuration pictured below.
As we stepped out of Barcelona's baggage claim area, you could see Taxi's lined up. Once in town, we walked everywhere. The only time we used Uber was when it was time to head back to the airport weeks later in London when our summer vacation ended. More detail in posts to come.
Gaudi's Sagrada Familia! One of the highlights of Barcelona, it is an architectural masterpiece, due to be finished in 2026 on the centenary of Gaudi's death.
The interior, ablaze with light from enormous and beautiful stain glass windows, will be a different visual experience depending on what time you visit. Cool colors illuminate the basilica at sunrise and into the morning, as the sun moves to the afternoon, the reds, oranges and yellows dominate the color palette. (Interior photo courtesy of: Joseph French.)
There are other Gaudi designed structures throughout Barcelona, but this is the most magnificent.
We used the Get Your Guide app to arrange our approximately 1.5 hour tour of this monument and paid extra for access to the towers (see below). You ascend the tower in an elevator, but the descent is all stairs. If you don't like heights, skip the tower tour. Also make sure you book a "Skip the Line" tour.
Yes, that is someone's arm as they held onto the rail during their tower descent. The spiral staircase is indeed that narrow and that steep.
Next post: More Barcelona highlights including accommodations & eateries.
As an educator, I have the luxury of having summers off to officiate weddings and to travel. This year was a milestone birthday for me, so I planned a 3.5 week trip to Spain, Portugal and London. Many of you have seen my IG photo posts and wanted BTS detail, so I've committed to follow though and focus this upcoming series of blogs to do just that.
Where to start? I subscribed to a few travel publications and started paying attention to the Costco travel brochures available in the membership area. I also asked my colleagues who love to travel and I researched/read a ton of travel blogs.
Flight-wise, I started with Google flights, searching for the cheapest flights available, varying departure and return dates to maximize my savings.
Accommodations/Itineraries: The blog I found most useful is Wheatless Wanderlust | Gluten Free Travel & Detailed Itineraries. Admittedly, I don't have a gluten tolerance issue so their culinary recommendations were of no use to me personally; however, their accommodations and itinerary suggestions piqued my interest. Matt and Alysha's site includes neighborhood detail, convenience to top attractions, average pricing for either a hostel, boutique hotel or apartment, parking and, of course, photos. With each recommendation, I'd cross-reference, Apple maps looking at satellite views and cross-reference Booking.com as well.
Spain and Portugal are top destination spots for the summer months, so making/paying for reservations needed to be done 4-6 months in advance.
Next Blog: Barcelona