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Barcelona in two and a half days, doable?

Barcelona in two and a half days, doable?

Jan 1st, 2012, 07:35 PM
  #1  
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Barcelona in two and a half days, doable?

This is the tentative itinerary I have drafted for two and a half days in Barcelona, unfortunately, I can't add an extra day or two to my stay in the city and to make matter worse the first full day of sightseeing I have is a Sunday. Is this the best use of my limited time in the city?

Day 1, Saturday.

Arrive BCN airport at 2.15 pm, take Airport bus to hotel (either at Plaza Espana or Plaza Catulunya). Visit stores on the Rambla and the Boqueria market.

Day 2, Sunday.

Am, visit Picasco Museum - closes in the afternooon.
Visit Sargarda Familiar.
lunch (or have a quick bite before visiting Sargarda Familiar)
Visit Casa Batllo (inside visit, not sure how long to allow for this, the venue closes at 8 pm)

Day 3, Monday

Am, visit Parc Guell
lunch
visit La Pedrera
visit Palau Guell.
Last minute shopping at El Cortes Ingeles, time permitting.

I plan on reserving tickets in advance so I need to know if the above is feasible so I may make the nescessary reservations.

Any suggestions will be appreciated. Thanks in advance.
RJames is offline  
Jan 1st, 2012, 11:13 PM
  #2  
 
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I think you have more time than you think. You should look at the map, check the opening hours, and group attractions by locations. The Sagrada Família is the tough one even if you bought advance ticket from Servicaixa if you care to go up an elevator.

Picasso Museum: According to http://www.bcn.cat/museupicasso/en/museum/times.html , the opening hours are 10-20. Where did you get "closes in the afternoon" info? You can get in without waiting in line with Articket, http://www.articketbcn.org/en/; however you are visiting only two of the 7 covered museums so it would be time saver but not money saver. Also AM time is the busiest, and so is Sunday if it is the free Sunday (1st Sun of Month.) You don't want to use Sat PM for visiting sites? Many sites are open late.

Palau Güell is closed on Monday. Look at their web site http://www.palauguell.cat/index_en.html

La Pedrera and Casa Batllò are only 500m from each other. Any reason why you don't plan to visit them one after another?
greg is offline  
Jan 2nd, 2012, 01:21 AM
  #3  
 
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eurocheapo.com/barcelona
good tips for budet looks fine
in limited time you have.
qwovadis is offline  
Jan 2nd, 2012, 04:01 AM
  #4  
ira
 
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Hi RJ,

>Visit Sargarda Familiar.<

I don't think that you are allowed in without special permission from the government.

You might find http://www.sagradafamilia.cat/sf-eng/?lang=0 a good substitute.

Enjoy your visit.

ira is offline  
Jan 2nd, 2012, 04:08 AM
  #5  
 
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There aren't any great stores along the Rambla, but you might want to stroll it anyway, just because that's something you must do in Barcelona. I didn't like the Picasso Museum that much, if you are pressed for time, I'd drop that. Unless you are a total Picasso buff, of course. I think I've seen enough Picasso in all the museums of the world to last me until the end of time, and I didn't think this museum had that great a collection. In any case, tehre are many things I'd much rather do with my time in Barcelona, that's for sure. Do something unique, like the national Catalonian art museum or the history museum, that's what I'd say.
Christina is online now  
Jan 2nd, 2012, 06:30 AM
  #6  
 
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I don't know of any non-food stores on Las Ramblas (south of Placa Catalunya) worth visiting.
What do you want to shop for? With such limited time, I would probably advise to forget shopping altogether unless there are food items on your list. In this case, you can go to basement of Corte Ingles (prepare to spend at least one hour ogling) or visit the smaller shops in Born where you can find good prices on popular tourist-take-home items like saffron, pimenton, canned seafood, etc etc. Ask if you want more details. If you want to buy jamon, the markets are a good, convenient bet. Do some research before so you can decide among the myriad incarnations of jamon Iberico.

I agree with Christina and, unless you are a rabid aficionado of his work, would probably skip the Picasso Museum in favor of a walk through the Barrio Gotico and Born. Certainly at least view the exterior of the Palau de Musica and peek into (at least) Sta Maria del Mar.

Boqueria is a must, of course, if you are interested in food. Mercado Sta Caterina is smaller and would also be worth a peek.

Casa Batllo needs a minimum of 90 minutes and you should by all means get the audio tour. I would go first thing in the morning to avoid lines. Visit La Pedrera just after, or reverse the order. Or leave the latter for next time.
ekscrunchy is offline  
Jan 2nd, 2012, 06:36 AM
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I also agree about the Picasso museum not being that impressive. After several trips to Barcelona I visited it earlier this year and I wasnt impressed. I rather recommend you do a guided tour of the Palau de la Musica Catalana, its gorgeous.

Also, if you have time vist the Barcelona Cathedral in the Barri Gotic.
cruiseluv is offline  
Jan 2nd, 2012, 08:27 AM
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Palau Guell is at the bottom of Ramblas
The shops on and around Ramnlas sell mostly cheap touristy goods.

Better to visit SF and Park Guell together.


Catalunya is more central than Espanya.
Picasso museum is o.k. but not a must-
Palau is i
danon is online now  
Jan 2nd, 2012, 08:35 AM
  #9  
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Thanks for all the helpful replies. I was worried the itinerary was not feasible. With a few adjustments I think I can manage.

I will omit the Picasso museum based on the feedback I have received.

Day 1, Saturday.

Arrive BCN airport at 2.15 pm, take Airport bus to hotel (either at Plaza Espana or Plaza Catulunya). Visit stores on the Rambla and the Boqueria market.

Day 2, Sunday.

Am, visit Park Guell.
lunch
PM, visit Sagrada Familia.
time permitting visit Casa Batllo or La Pedrera (I know they are close to each other but I doubt I can accomodate both before they close).

Am, visit La Pedrera and Casa Batllo if not done the previous day.
late lunch
Stroll around Bari Gothic or visit the Palau de la Musica Catalana or Hospital de Sant Pau (this is subject to weather, obviously don't want to stroll around Bari Gothic in the rain).
Last minute shopping at El Cortes Ingeles, time permitting - I would like to buy a souvenir of Barcelona and maybe a few gifts for friends back home.
RJames is offline  
Jan 2nd, 2012, 07:44 PM
  #10  
ita
 
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Check custom regulations before you buy ham. It was confiscated by Canadian custom officials. We were held up and missed our connecting flights. I would not spend any time at El Cortes Ingles. It is just a big, busy department store and I didn't see anything different there.
ita is offline  
Jan 2nd, 2012, 07:45 PM
  #11  
ita
 
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Check custom regulations before you buy ham. It was confiscated by Canadian custom officials. We were held up and missed our connecting flights. I would not spend any time at El Cortes Ingles. It is just a big, busy department store and I didn't see anything different there.
ita is offline  
Jan 2nd, 2012, 07:56 PM
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La Boqueria is overpriced and overhyped. It's a food market and the quality of the goods is average at best. Same for La Rambla shops. Has anything you've read actually recommended shopping on La Rambla?

Casa Batllo has a very expensive entrance fee and its inside isn't quite on par with the roof of La Pedrera.
BigRuss is offline  
Jan 2nd, 2012, 08:24 PM
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I am glad BigRuss and others said what I would have said about La Boqueria and La Rambla. Both are something one can walk through while going from one place to another, such as from your hotel to Palau Guell, all the while not falling prey to pickpockets. I would not set aside a prime time slot just to visit La Rambla or La Boqueria.
greg is offline  
Jan 3rd, 2012, 08:39 AM
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I wouldn't equal La Boquería and Las Ramblas. I abhor Las Ramblas, the only reason I cross it is because La Boquería market is there. I have never bought any food item or eaten at La Boquería, so can't comment about the quality of the items sold there. However, the variety of meats, fish, produce, etc. is a feast to at least look at. To go in and peek doesn't take long .
cruiseluv is offline  
Jan 3rd, 2012, 08:48 AM
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This isn't a matter of equating the two: La Boqueria receives a lot of hype. Its produce is middling, the sweets are below that level, and the savories are available elsewhere for less. It's a testament to the art of visual layout that La Boqueria has the reputation it does.

You want a nice market in Spain with good food, Mercado San Miguel in Madrid. Not going to Madrid? La Boqueria isn't a substitute.

La Rambla is a loud mess that, in the words of our cabbie from the airport, "has pickpocket and tourist, but no Spanish."
BigRuss is offline  
Jan 3rd, 2012, 08:58 AM
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We "did" Barcelona in 2 days with the tourist bus (There are two companies.) You don't waste any time looking for transportation and hop on and off at any place you want. The sites in Barcelona are spread out over the city. We managed to see a lot and in depth!
Then we spent the last day at Montserrat - not to be missed! It's easy to get there by train.
We fell in love with Barcelona and it is on our must-return list.
Taltul is offline  
Jan 3rd, 2012, 09:09 AM
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"La Rambla is a loud mess that, in the words of our cabbie from the airport, "has pickpocket and tourist, but no Spanish."

Sorry, he was wrong,it's the Spanish that are doing the pickpocketing !
Trip report from my trip coming soon.

But to follow this thread:
La Boqueria, is a huge indoor market, heaving with everyone mainly having a look. The Ramblas Entrance is chaotic,people cutting accross the entrance and going in and out. It comes to a grinding halt.

Only one shop woth going into on Ramblas. That is a very small and interesting music shop towards the top. (name ...i forgot)

Sagrada Familia:
They still haven't finished it !!
Cranes everywhere, building materials everywhere and millions of tourists queuing in a nice neat line for about half a mile. We stayed on the open top bus. For 2 reasons:
1. Didn't want to waste the day standing around the Sagrada Familia when I got a great view from the bus.
2. The queue to get back on the bus was almost as long as the queue to get into the Sagrada Familia. I saw it. It was interesting to see, but in my humble opinion far better things to use the valuable time up with.

Muck
Mucky is offline  
Jan 3rd, 2012, 10:07 AM
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Taking the bus past the Sagrada Familia is a bit of a waste. We only stayed outside and viewed the structure by walking around (two small children meant no collective patience to go inside or brave the lines to do so) but just walking around it and snapping a ton of pics was interesting. Dunno how much of the detail you'd get from the bus.
BigRuss is offline  
Jan 3rd, 2012, 12:47 PM
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"Dunno how much of the detail you'd get from the bus"

Hi Russ,
Open top bus stops for about 15 mins whilst the millions pile on and off. It then moves off very slowly as it is stuck in traffic + clear day = Plenty of detail.

I got 2 tons of pics and it was very interesting too.

Muck
Mucky is offline  
Jan 4th, 2012, 07:09 AM
  #20  
ita
 
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In such a short time I would skip the museums and concentrate on what Barcelona is known for-its architecture. I think Sagrada Famillia is the best. You can buy a ticket at any Caixa Bank ATM. Arrive at 15 minutes before opening. We did this in October and were second in line. Museums take a lot of time. By the way, I really enjoyed the Picasso Museum-especially his Los Meninas series. I liked it better than the Paris Picasso Museum. I am an art history graduate so museums are a high priority for me, but in such a short time there is much in Barcelona that is unique and of more importance, especially if the weather is good.
ita is offline  

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