Barcelona you make my heart go boom boom

However all these images fit into a post for one week, I do not know. It was if time stood still for a while, enough to let us relax, see the sights and let us share several cold beverages. I must admit I was a little unsure on the trip after years of Brits coming back from Spain sunburnt and blistered, soaking up culture by the pool and with the knowledge in mind that Barcelona is a popular tourist destination. Queues and souvenir sellers have never attracted me, however it turns out, I was wrong. Very wrong! Yes, Barcelona had is tourist attractions (however in this city they are gorgeous masterpieces of architecture that can’t be seen anywhere else – Hello Gaudi!), and of course the tacky souvenirs, but with a city offering so much more (including Vegan gelato – Gelaaati!) every aspect of my imagination was delighted. The trip included delicious meals with recommendations to visit Sesamo (the chef is great to chat to if you can catch him on a non-busy day), Juicy Jones, Gopal (see the cake above? Vegan! Available at Gopal) and a restaurant serving the most interesting pizza I have ever eaten, take a fresh base with flour milled in house, top it with the essential items of a stir fry (including pickled ginger, wasabi and soy sauce) and you have the fantastically named, Tamagotchi! (Cannot remember it’s name but will add it in when I look it up) All highly recommended weaver you are a carnivore, veggie or vegan. Then of course you have the gorgeous streets, thriving with character, vintage goodies and fabulously packaged chocolate. We found that the interior design stores where the most interesting in terms of modern design and note that you should be careful while turning into the wrong street in the El Ravel area (although many great stores around the university and gallery, especially if you are into skateboarding). The beach is of course a highlight, a rare occurrence with it’s close proximity to a thriving cultural city that already has so much to do. We recommend hiring a bike and cycling along the coast to find the nicest beaches with the least amount of people. Into the evening we found delight in a small bar covered with nick’nacks as a Spanish singer sung to an acoustic guitar, and a Jazz bar where an African inspired jazz band played into the early hours as incense occasional wafted across the room (so rarely do clubs smell good) and Australian tourist buying us shots(Café Royale)! Our last night co-insideed with Sant Joan, the Spanish celebration of the summer solstice. We spent it on the beach with hundreds of others, taking in the fireworks and sound, and then taking a splash in the sea at midnight for good luck.We are already discussing a trip back to Barcelona, and were certain that we won’t be bored for a second.

Roman finds ♥ Siestas ♥ Tourist havens ♥ Bike ride along the beach ♥ Fairytale castle ♥ Feasting ♥ Vintage sales in a vegetarian store ♥ Spanish singer in tiny bars ♥ Jazz/African beats in a club that smelt on incense ♥ Midnight fireworks on the beach ♥ Gallery shows ♥ Cable car & funicular rides ♥ Crystals in Markets ♥ Sun everyday ♥ Cheap bear ♥ Architectural delights ♥ Wrong turns ♥ Bar crawls ♥ Fresh juice available everywhere ♥ Cake for breakfast ♥ Martin Parr Souvenir exhibit ♥ Vintage sunglasses ♥ Sand everywhere ♥ Mermaid buildings ♥

Thank you so much to the forum on meetup.com’s group ‘The London Vegan Meetup group’ as they all had wonderful suggestions and of course the wisdom that is Happy Cow. The app really helped us out on occassion.

All Images – © Rebecca Hawkes 2012

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