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Anniversary Euro Trip

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Jun 13th, 2016, 06:54 PM
  #1
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Anniversary Euro Trip

My wife and I are planning a trip to Europe for our 1 year anniversary in July. We are both outdoorsy people and enjoy eating and drinking our way through vacation. We are both big time foodies, love farms and culture. Both do not care much for history or art. We also love the water, fish and beach towns. We are both pretty adventurous and like experiencing new things. We have never been to any of the cities we plan to visit except for London.

We know for sure the dates - arriving July 18th in London Heathrow and leaving to go home July 27th leaving from Copenhagen.

We only plan to stay in London for 2 nights to visit some friends and flying from Bristol airport.

We definitely want to spend time in Barcelona.

Other options we have narrowed down based on price and location are either make a stop in Corfu, Greece for a few beach days on the Mediterranean or go to Faro Portugal on the Altantic. Another option would be to go to Dubrovnik.

I am looking for some advice on whether we stay put in Barcelona and maybe go to a nearby catolonian beachy area. Go for the extra city/country? If yes, which one?

When speaking to friends about our trip everyone is enthusiastic about Barcelona but we have heard some mixed reviews on it being touristy and a bit clubby.
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Jun 13th, 2016, 06:56 PM
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Also, some considerations for these destinations? Is there anything we need to know or think about or avoid at any of these locations?
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Jun 13th, 2016, 09:02 PM
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By my count, you have a total of eight days on the ground in Europe (you can't count the flight in day or the flight out day). With that short time, I highly recommend you choose just two locations (or even just one). That will give you enough time to get a brief taste of these places.
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Jun 13th, 2016, 10:05 PM
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Not much time really, and some will be used up traveling. Considering the logistics of arriving in London and departing from Copenhagen (how much time in Copenhagen?), and based on your expressed interests, skip Barcelona. Go to San Sebastián, Spain for what ever time you have.
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Jun 14th, 2016, 02:35 AM
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Barcelona is a fabulous city and a true food heaven. Hordes of tourists in the Gothic quarter and around famous Las Ramblas, but plenty of central and local atmosphere districts outside the most beaten track such as Poble Sec, Raval and Gràcia, and I also very much recommend medieval and vibrant El Born and the fun and laid-back Barceloneta district just inland from the beach.

Could give you tons of tapas bar and restaurant tips based on your preferences, but in general I recommend the Born and Poble Sec districts for great food.
El Born: http://theculturetrip.com/europe/spa...orn-barcelona/
Poble sec: http://www.barcelonaturisme.com/wv3/...to-bodega.html

Of course the Boquería market, one of the finest food markets in the world: http://www.gardenista.com/posts/la-boqueria-market/

Gourmet food in Somodó, one of the best deals in the city: http://www.somodo.es/
http://www.spottedbylocals.com/barcelona/somodo/
http://www.barcelona-metropolitan.co...s-somod%C3%B3/

And no trip to Barcelona is Complete without a meal in 7 Portes from 1836, an institution in town, tons of history in the walls and delicious and traditional Catalan food:
http://7portes.com/en/

And I also second the idea of Belle epoque San Sebastián, the food capital of Spain and arguably all of Europe, some of the finest city beaches on the continent, and European Capital of Culture 2016. http://www.euskoguide.com/places-bas...stian-tourism/
"Is San Sebastián the world's greatest city for foodies": http://www.telegraph.co.uk/travel/de...y-for-foodies/
http://edition.cnn.com/2015/04/03/tr...nary-journeys/

16 Michelin stars (Three 3-star restaurants, Arzak, Akelarre and Martín Berasategui) in this small town (pop 180 000), but the best thing aboput the food culture up here is the quality of the food in any place you happen to walk into. http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandst...rink.shopping2
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Jun 14th, 2016, 06:24 AM
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After London you have 6 days. I can barely imagine getting to Barcelona, then back to Copenhagen in that time, never mind Greece, Portugal, or Dubrovnik. How do you plan to maneuver among these places, even it's it's only London, Barcelona, and Copenhage? Every time to change countries, it's going to eat up a good part of, or all of, a day.
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Jun 14th, 2016, 06:48 AM
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You have almost NO time at all. And some of the places you are considering are very far apart so moving from one to another would eat up most of a day.

You'll want to be in Copenhagen by the 26th, so you have 6.5 days -- if you only pick one place (other than London and Copenhagen) you will have 5-5.5 days free . . . that isn't much. And if you pick two other destinations -- you'll only have about 2 days free each.

You need to decide which ONE other destination you want.

(If you are staying in London two nights -- why are you flying out of Bristol?)
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Jun 14th, 2016, 08:00 AM
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Your plan is completely daft - you either don't have the time to hit the four corners of Western Europe that you intend, or you won't see a bloody thing you want to see.

Did you know that Barcelona has beaches and it's on the Mediterranean?

smh
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Jun 14th, 2016, 08:29 AM
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London + Barcelon + Copenhagen would be enough.
If you want to be in a beachy town, I'd go to Sitges. Very nice, very touristy (seems it is the place to be if you are gay, btw).
Bery enjoyable.
That gives you about 2 days per destination.
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Jun 14th, 2016, 08:58 AM
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Thanks for all the helpful advice!

I think we may end up spending an extra day in CPH and an extra 2 days in Spain. Any suggestions on places near Barcelona where we can visit for a day or two? Maybe fly there from Bistol then take train to Barcelona... Preferably less touristy/congested with nice beaches and restaurants.

To answer some of the questions - we are landing in london early morning the 18th and spending the night with friends there, then going to Bristol the next day by train to visit friends and will fly out of that airport.

@bigruss - yes I am very aware that Barcelona has beaches and is on the Mediterranean, but it's also very congested and not great from what I heard. Your smug/condescending comments are not helpful at all.
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Jun 14th, 2016, 09:22 AM
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Excellent beaches in and around Barcelona: http://gospain.about.com/od/spainbea...na-beaches.htm

The Barceloneta city beach is crowded, but an extremely fun and eclectic beach (and promenade), all kinds of people and all kinds of activities until sunset, and close to many excellent restaurants and tapas bars http://www.barcelonaturisme.com/wv3/en/page/1272/.html
And plenty of other options: http://lameva.barcelona.cat/ca/aprof...anys-i-platges

Barceloneta tapas bars and restaurants: http://www.theguardian.com/travel/20...taurants-spain
Two out of many classics here:
Can Solé from 1903: http://restaurantcansole.com/en/
Jai-Ca tapas bar: http://www.inandoutbarcelona.net/en/...-in-barcelona/
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Jun 14th, 2016, 09:38 AM
  #12
 
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... a little more about Barceloneta: http://www.timeout.com/barcelona/thi...-and-the-ports

Seaside and laid-back Santa Marta might become a favourite. Run by the twins who run plain fabulous restaurant Xemei in Poble Sec: http://www.timeout.com/barcelona/res...ts/santa-marta
About Xemei, had an unforgettable meal here last year, especially the Bigoli en salsa Veneciana is to die for: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Lvcjtoh0tU
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Jun 14th, 2016, 10:41 AM
  #13
 
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My "smug/condescending" comments are helpful if they get you off the notion that you're going to go to London, Barcelona, Corfu/Faro and Copenhagen in 8 days and have anything other than a horrid trip spent primarily in transit. If you're looking for other people on this board to ratify your itinerary, fine. If you're looking for actual advice to determine if your plan is feasible and worthwhile, read on.

"it's also very congested and not great from what I heard." What you've heard seems to be the nattering of the grapes in various vines.

First, "very congested" is ambiguous. Compared to what? Venice Beach in Cali? Not necessarily. Manhattan Beach in NYC? Again, not really. Barceloneta is a beach appended to a major city. It is not a secluded cove. There will be a significant number of bathers there. Which leads to the next point.

Second, most European beaches are "not great" compared to what you could visit in the US and the Caribbean. The comparison is not close. So hearing that the beach is "not great" has not given you significant information. You want white sand, blue water, miles of seafront and sparse crowds: Caribbean in off-season. The Redneck Riviera has no cache, but it has better quality beaches than most
of Europe's coastal areas.

Barcelona's location on the Mediterranean should lead to the question "are there beaches nearby that are not crowded?" instead of leading you to try to fly across the Iberian peninsula or all the way to the Adriatic to find a beach. Ultimately, it's your money and your time. I'm actually trying to save you some of both.
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Jun 14th, 2016, 04:08 PM
  #14
 
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Nice try, BigRuss.
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