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Please Critique My Barcelona Itinerary! April 2019

Please Critique My Barcelona Itinerary! April 2019

Jan 11th, 2019, 07:17 AM
  #1  
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Please Critique My Barcelona Itinerary! April 2019

Hi Fodorites,
I will be visiting Barcelona with my friend during the first week of April, 2019. Not including arrival and departure day, we have 5 days, Monday-Friday. It is my second visit to Barcelona (first was short - 2 days) and my friend's first. We are 50-something and enjoy walking, art, culture, and people watching. Our hotel is near La Boqueria/Las Ramblas. I am in charge of planning our itinerary. Please tell me what you think of my initial
plan:

Day 1: "Gaudi Day" - Start day at Park Guell, then ?go to the "Gaudi Experience" multimedia presentation on the way to Sagrada Familia (buy tickets in advance, probably with audio guide, no tower visit). Continue walking past Casa Mila and Casa Batllo (see from outside? go in to one?), walk to Las Ramblas, wander the Boqueria market, end afternoon at Placa Reial for "tea" or dinner depending on hour.

Day 2: Day trip to Girona - travel by train

Day 3: Old City / Ciutat Vella: Barri Gotic and El Call, visit to Synagogue Mayor,, Placa del Rei, walk to Mercat de Santa Caterina for lunch. Meet
at Picasso Museum 15:00/3pm for 2 hour tour finish around 5-6pm.

Day 4 Half Day trip to Sitges by train . Return for evening concert at Palua de la Musi
.
Day 5 Montjuic - ride funicular up to park/hill. Walk around. Then to Joan Miro Foundation. Then to Poble Espanyol. Dinner in the area. Magic
Fountain show at 9pm.

With room for some unplanned wandering or window shopping or coffee etc - please tell me what you think!
THANKS SO VERY MUCH
gidlaurie is offline  
Jan 11th, 2019, 07:54 AM
  #2  
 
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Day One. You might add Hospital de Sant Pau, a UNESCO site, which we found by accident on our walk to La Sagrada Familia. Great architecture mosaics, gardens, tunnels.

Day Two. Maybe also travel to Figueres and the Dali Museum? We were able to easily do both that and Girona with a car.

Maybe a half day to go up to spectacular Montserrat? Great walking city. Don't forget the waterfront. Clean, safe and relatively uncrowded once you get off Las Ramblas.
whitehall is online now  
Jan 11th, 2019, 06:30 PM
  #3  
kja
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
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I hope you enjoy Barcelona as much as I did -- and think you have a plan that combines a nice mix of things.

I was very glad to see the interiors of several of Gaudi's buildings and would strongly encourage you to visit the inside of at least one. The ways in which he made use of light are, to my mind, impossible to appreciate without personal experience! I thought the interior of Casa Batlló fascinating and beautiful and inspiring. I opted for an evening visit to Casa Mila, which I thought much more notable for its extremely enjoyable roof-top light show than for its interior. JMO.

Since you enjoy art, consider a visit to the Museo Nacional d’Art de Catalunya while on Montjuic.

When you visit Poble Espanyol, consider dinner and a flamenco performance at the Tablao de Carmen, and if you do, reserve as far in advance as you can to get the best seats.

I agree that the Recinte Modernista de Sant Pau (not to be confused with Antic Hopstial de la Santa Creu i Sant Paul,) -- a UNESCO World Heritage Site covered in detail in all the better guidebooks for the region -- is well worth considering. It is, IMO, magnificent!

Some people combine Girona and Figueres; I needed 2 full days to see my priorities in those 2 cities -- and could easily have used more time.

If you haven't already seen it, you might find some useful information in my trip report:
Four Awesome Weeks in the North of Spain and Catalunya

Hope that helps!
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Jan 12th, 2019, 12:08 AM
  #4  
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!Whitehall - Thank you for your response and suggestions! I am going to look at the Hospital de Sant Pau again
I have been to Montserrat which was truly spectacular. Therefore am planning a different day trip this time.
Hadn't really considered the waterfront - is there a place to walk, a promenade, or specific things to do/see there?
THANKS!

Last edited by gidlaurie; Jan 12th, 2019 at 12:17 AM.
gidlaurie is offline  
Jan 12th, 2019, 12:12 AM
  #5  
kja
 
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Originally Posted by gidlaurie View Post
Hadn't really considered the waterfront - is there a place to walk, a promenade, or specific things to do/see there?

Yes there is a place to walk. Personally, I would NOT make it a priority when you have so very little time in the city. YMMV.

(Sorry: I didn't see that you had flagged this comment specifically for whitehall when I responded. )

Last edited by kja; Jan 12th, 2019 at 12:28 AM.
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Jan 12th, 2019, 12:14 AM
  #6  
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KJA - Thank you for your response! I have read your great Trip Report and it was very helpful! I am glad you said that an interior visit is worthwhile for Casa Battlo and/or Mila, as I have been feeling that just a walk past might not be enough. May skip the "multimedia Gaudi show" (unless anyone here says to do it) and add a visit into Casa Battlo.
Is the Tablao de Carmen a good Flamenco performance? I was looking for a performance for an evening - this might be a good idea!
I have decided to keep Girona as it's own day trip without Figueres - just want to really have time to wander and enjoy Girona for itself. Did you walk on the walls at Girona? Wondering if there is a particular section to walk, or if to do the whole stretch.
Thank you for your Trip Report and for all your help!
My short visit to Barcelona 3 years ago wet my appetite and I can't wait to spend time there again!
gidlaurie is offline  
Jan 12th, 2019, 12:23 AM
  #7  
kja
 
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Originally Posted by gidlaurie View Post
KJA - Thank you for your response! I have read your great Trip Report and it was very helpful!


Nice to know -- thanks!

Originally Posted by gidlaurie View Post
Is the Tablao de Carmen a good Flamenco performance?


When I planned my trip, there was a Fodorite (kimhe) who was extraordinarily knowledgeable and enthusiastic about flamenco. I went to the Tablao de Carmen on his recommendation, and I had no reason to doubt kimhe's expertise -- it was magnificent!!!

Originally Posted by gidlaurie View Post
Did you walk on the walls at Girona? Wondering if there is a particular section to walk, or if to do the whole stretch.

I walked just a small part of Girona's old walls near the Moorish baths (the Banys Arabs). I think that maybe the ONLY section you can walk, but I could be wrong!

Last edited by kja; Jan 12th, 2019 at 12:31 AM.
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Jan 12th, 2019, 04:05 AM
  #8  
 
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Originally Posted by gidlaurie View Post
!Whitehall - Thank you for your response and suggestions! I am going to look at the Hospital de Sant Pau again
I have been to Montserrat which was truly spectacular. Therefore am planning a different day trip this time.
Hadn't really considered the waterfront - is there a place to walk, a promenade, or specific things to do/see there?
THANKS!
There is plenty to see and do in Barcelona, but sometimes it's nice to get a break from the museums, etc. We always like the vibe around harbors and boats. We have seen some of the largest yachts in the world there. The world class aquarium and oceanarium is excellent and has a focus on the Mediterranean, and yes, there is a promenade. You can also take the Mountjuic cable car to or from the waterfront area, and once on the mountain, if you have an interest, there is a park that includes the stadium from the 1992 summer Olympics. Here are two decent websites with info on the waterfront area:

Barcelona Port Vell - The waterfront harbor of Barcelona

https://www.insightguides.com/destin...t-and-poblenou
whitehall is online now  
Jan 12th, 2019, 05:26 AM
  #9  
 
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I very much enjoyed my second visit to Barcelona in 2015, and never found time for a day trip. I highly recommend seeing the Hospital de Sant Pau and the interior of Casa Battlo. I would add the Palace of Catalan Music, and check to see whether there is a performance while you are there. I also enjoyed visiting two lesser known apartments in the same block as Casa Battlo.

For my trip report with photos start here, links at the top of the page: https://mytimetotravel.wordpress.com...s-the-ramblas/

Make sure you buy tickets in advance for the Gaudi sights.
thursdaysd is offline  
Jan 13th, 2019, 05:36 AM
  #10  
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Originally Posted by kja View Post
(Sorry: I didn't see that you had flagged this comment specifically for whitehall when I responded. )
Though a response to "whitehall"s message, by no means exclusive! Thanks for your answer!
gidlaurie is offline  
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