Thursday, January 9, 2014

Honeymoon Part 2: Barcelona, Spain

After spending 3 days in Paris (which you can read about here) we were off to Barcelona, Spain for the second half of our honeymoon.  As most of you know, my mother-in-law had spilled the beans to me about the first part of our honeymoon trip, but I had no idea where the second part of the trip would bring us.  MD decided to reveal this to me at my bridal shower in NJ in September... about a month before our wedding.  So before heading out to lunch with my dad and AV, Mark handed me a little card which had one of those boxes that you scan with your phone on it... when I scanned the box it brought up a map with all our honeymoon destinations on it.

I can't even begin to explain how excited I was that we were going to Spain.  Those of you who know me KNOW that I am pretty much obsessed with any and everything having to do with Spain.  I did a study abroad in Granada, Spain back in the Spring of 2006 and have been pretty much obsessed ever since.  Although a part of my heart will always be in Granada as it was my FAVORITE city in Spain... Barcelona was definitely a close second.  Finding out we were going to Barcelona was amazing because I was so excited to be able to share a place that meant so much to me with MD.

We got to Barcelona fairly late as our flight was delayed due to bad weather in London so we didn't really do anything when we got there because we were tired from a long day of traveling.  We were super excited with our hotel room because it was bigger than the closet that we had for a room in fact I think our bathroom was almost bigger than our hotel room in Paris.  We headed to bed early so that we could get an early start the next morning.

Our first morning in Barcelona we had breakfast in the hotel before heading out to explore the city.  Our first stop was heading towards Las Ramblas to check out the stalls, street artists and head towards the Mirador de Colon which is right at the port.  I was excited for this because I just remember Las Ramblas being a mess of people selling all sorts of different things... plus the street performer statutes were just incredible!  We made it to the Mirador and decided to take a cruise on Las Golondrinas of the port and beaches of Barcelona.

The cruise was so much fun... we enjoyed the sun while drinking some Spanish beer and touring the port of Barcelona.  We saw so much from the boat and I enjoyed pointing out to MD some of the sights that I remembered from the last time I was in Barcelona!
Waiting for our boat tour to start
Beer... on a boat... before noon... yay Barcelona!!
View from the cruise

After our cruise we headed back to Las Ramblas so that we could find a place for a typical Spanish lunch... and of course some sangria! We found a nice cafe and sat down to enjoy some paella and sangria!

MD's first Sangria experience

After lunch we headed up Las Ramblas because I was determined to find the flower stalls and if they still had them the bird stalls from when I had last visited.  Plus Las Ramblas goes from the port to Plaza Cataluyna so I knew there would be plenty to do up that way.  
One of the street performer statutes 
So many pretty flowers!
While on our way up Las Ramblas we took a slight detour to check out the Cathedral of Barcelona.  I hadn't gone to see the Cathedral last time I was there because at that point I think I was "Cathedral'ed" out. When traveling with Bucknell en Espana I think we saw EVERY Cathedral in EVERY city we visited, so when I only had 2 days in Barcelona, the Cathedral wasn't high on our list of priorities. The Cathedral in Barcelona is actually quite breathtaking and I was so happy that we had taken the time to walk over and see it. 

After visiting the Cathedral we continued our walk up Las Ramblas to Plaza Catalunya.  After checking out the Plaza we decided to head to Casa Batllo which was one of Gaudi's projects in Barcelona.  I was looking forward to MD getting to see some of Gaudi's architecture because I figured that as an engineer MD would appreciate the attention to detail that Gaudi paid in all of his buildings.  Sure enough, Casa Batllo did not disappoint and we had a great time on the audio tour that we went on.  I think my favorite part of the tour was going up on the roof and getting to see the mosaics up there up close and personal! 

Plaza Cataluyna
Outside of Casa Batllo

Casa Batllo at night
After Casa Batllo we decided to have dinner and call it a night because we had to be up early on Tuesday morning to go to see the most anticipated sight of the entire honeymoon.... La Sagrada Familia!!!!  I went to see La Sagrada Familia in the Spring of 2006 and I was so excited to have the opportunity to revisit  the work in progress.  What is really cool about La Sagrada Familia is that it is a Gaudi work that is still a work in progress.  The work on the church is funded by donations from the public as well as the entrance fees from people visiting the church.  I have to say... it was completely amazing to see how much had been accomplished in the 7 years since I had been there... where there was once scaffolding there was an altar... it was seriously so incredible to see the difference. 
La Sagrada Familia in 2006

Hubby & I at La Sagrada Familia
I wish we had more time at La Sagrada Familia because I would have LOVED to take the elevator up to the other levels, but unfortunately we did not have enough time to do that.  After La Sagrada Familia we headed to lunch and then off to explore La Pedrera another famous Gaudi building.  Unfortunately the best part of the building, the roof, was closed because of the weather, but we still had a good time checking out the rest of the building... plus you could get a glimpse of the roof from the windows in the attic.  

Commemorative Picture from La Pedrera
After La Pedrera the weather had cleared up a bit so we thought we would take the cable cars up to Mont Juic, but unfortunately by the time we made it to the cable car stand they were closing up for the day, even though the guide books all said that they didn't close for another few hours.  We were kind of bummed that we were unable to to make it to Mont Juic, but at least we were able to get a nice walk down to the Port in and then we took a long walk back to the hotel to kill some time.  We had a fairly early dinner on our last night because it was going to be an early morning to get to the airport to catch our flight back home to the states.  

I was so sad to have to head back to the US after an amazing honeymoon vacation in Europe.  Our time was way too short... we needed at least another week to be able to continue to explore both countries more.  All that means is that we are going to have to go back again some day!!

As always... today I am thankful for the fact that I have a wonderful hubby who was able to plan such an amazing honeymoon vacation for us.  I am thankful that we had the ability to take off from work to spend so much quality time together.  I know there are many couples who do not have the means or the time to do something like this, but thankfully we were able to.  It was so nice to be able to relax and unwind after the stress of planning our own wedding and we are so lucky we had that time to relax and have some fun after it all! 


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  2. Wow!! Such a beautiful bridal shower. The preparations are really awesome. Just loved them all. Thinking to arrange my niece’s bridal shower at one of New York wedding venues. Will hire famous event planner for the day. This is my first attempt in planning such a thing.


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