Barcelona With Kids

barelonaLast April we ended up in Barcelona with kids.  We were there with our daughter, son-in-law, and grandsons aged 8 months, 5 and 10.  Pretty wide age gap I know and finding things for the kids to do can be challenging at times. Specially when the adults want to do things too!

But Barcelona is a pretty kid friendly city and there are quite a few things for kids to do and a lot of fun places for them to visit.

Ever since my kids were small I always liked to mix things up when we went on family vacations and I see no reason why the same wouldn’t  hold true with vacationing with grandkids.  What I mean is I feel that vacations are a fun way to learn about the world and the different people and cultures that live in the many places we visit.  That’s why as part of any vacation I include something educational, like museums, local cuisine, and architecture, and something fun, like a beach day or an amusement park, in our itinerary.

So here are 7 kid friendly places and activities that will make your Barcelona with kids vacation fun for everyone.  I’m sure you’ll find something to suit your family!

This article contains affiliate links too help you plan your Barcelona family vacay!

Barcelona with kidsExploring Gaudí’s Work

Let’s face it one of the main tourist attractions in Barcelona are the whimsical buildings designed by Antoni Gaudí.  And whether you’re in Barcelona with kids or without those buildings are a definite must see.

Kids may not be that impressed with the unfinished Sagrada Familia Basilica but they’ll probably find the fairy tale buildings and sculptures in Parc Guell fun and charming.  Barcelona with kidsAnd they’ll probably love seeing the dragon like roof of Casa Batló and the wavy facade of La Pedrera aka Casa Mila.

barcelona with kids

Ok that’s a lot for some kids to take in, actually it’s a lot for some adults too!

So what’s the best way to see all this?  Well a private guided tour of La Sagrada Familia and Parc Guell is a great start!

barcelona with kidsbarcelona with kidsYou can book a kid friendly tour of both the basilica and the park with a guide who will tailor the experience for your child.  The guide will make visiting these places both fun and educational.  Best of all the tour includes skip the line tickets to both attractions (who wants to stand in line for hours to buy tickets and gain entrance, specially when you’ve got antsy kids with you!) and a cab ride between the two sites.  And since it’s private you decide how long you want to spend in each place.

BArcelona with kidsSo you can fit in a time for some silly photos.  Like spelling out YMCA in front of the Basilica!  Or letting the kids do a bit of running and climbing at the playground located across the street from the church.  Hey while the kids let off some energy parents and grandparents can grab a sangria and a snack at the truck located in front of the playground entrance.  There are tables and chairs located in the same place where you can rest and have a snack or drink while admiring the front of La Sagrada Familia.  (Just beware of pick pockets, they love to work the crowded sites. Keep your belongings in front of you always and keep and eye on the kids in the playground!)

Click here to book a kid friendly private tour of Barcelona’s 2 great attractions!

After visiting 2 of Gaudí’s masterpieces take a stroll down Passeig de Gracia if you still have the energy!

Barcelona with kidsHere you’ll find high end fashion boutiques including Gucci, Chanel, Vuitton, Jimmy Choo, Hermes, and more.  Definitely the Rodeo Drive or Fifth Avenue of Barcelona!  Kids might enjoy the store window displays along the boulevard, or they can check out the Apple Store or the little fashionistas might like to pop in to Desigual, a clothing brand headquartered in Barcelona that features trendy and chic clothing for the whole family.  We love Desigual!  They have fun clothes!

Along this wide street you’ll also pass Casa Batló and La Pedrera.  You can if you want buy tickets and check out the interior of each building, they’re pretty cool and some kids might find it interesting.  Our kids did not.  They preferred window shopping, go figure!

 

Barcelona with kidsBarcelona with kidsStroll down La Rambla

La Rambla is Barcelona’s main pedestrian street.  It’s a crowded bustling pedestrian zone that stretches from Placa Catalunya right off Passeig de Gracia down to the Columbus statue towards the waterfront.

It’s lined with souvenir shops, hotels, cafés, fast food joints, restaurants, street vendors, and street artists.  Kids like La Rambla because it’s lined with shops and vendors hawking things kids love like gelato, ice cream, and even toys.  Our 10 year old basketball fanatic loved the NBA store and café.

barcelona with kidsAlso on La Rambla you’ll find La Boqueria Market.  Kids love markets!  They’re colorful, fun, and filled with good things to eat.  Specially these frozen fruit bars!

Drop in around lunchtime and gather some picnic fixinigs!  You’ll find everything you need for a family picnic including fresh bread, deli meats and cheeses, fresh fruits and veggies, locally made olives and pickles, and more.  Or you can find ready to eat tapas like fried shrimp and calamari.

If you don’t want to take your food to go you can sit down at one of the tapas bars inside the market.

barcelona with kidsMosaic Class

Kids love arts and crafts.  Take them to this hands on Mosaic Class and let their creativity run wild for a couple of hours.

Kid friendly artists will teach kids the art of mosaic making.  The kids will learn how to handle and set tiles to create a mosaic which they will take home at the end of the class.

Our kids loved this!  Click here to book a Mosaic Class for children.

barcelona with kidsCamp Nou Private Tour

Football (Soccer) fans old and young will enjoy  a private tour of Camp Nou, home of the FC Barcelona or Barça.  This is the current team of Messi and the former team of other great players like Neymar and Ronaldo.

The tour includes one way transportation from Barcelona city center, guided tour of the stadium and museum,  and a light meal.  Of course you get to shop in the megastore for logo items such as shorts, shirts, balls, and more.  Click here to book a private tour of Camp Nou!

Barcelona with kidsL’Aquarium

Spend a couple of hours at the Barcelona Aquarium.  It’s one of the largest aquariums in Europe and is home to the world’s largest collection of Mediterranean Sea Life.

We love aquariums and have been to some of the best around the world.  The one in Barcelona is a definite must if you find yourself in Barcelona with kids!

Click here to get your skip the like L’Aquarium tickets!

barcelona with kidsBarcelona Zoo

Located in the city’s Cuitadella Park the Barcelona Zoo is another kid friendly favorite.  Founded in 1892 it is one of the oldest and most modern zoos in the world.

This zoo prides itself on it’s humane treatment of its animals.  It’s modern facilities and habitats do seem to house happy and content residents.

You can ride the train around the zoo or rent an electric buggy to putter around in.  Then of course there’s a restaurant serving fresh meals as well as snack vendors.  You can easily spend a day here and the kids will love it!   Avoid the ticket ques and click here to purchase your zoo tickets!

PortAventura and Ferrari Land Theme Parks

Spend the day at 2 theme parks!

Thrill to the super speed rides in Ferrari Land then the breathtaking coasters in PortAventura.  Truly and adrenalin junkie’s dream parks!

For those of us not so interested in heart stopping rides and the younger kids find family friendly rides and venues in both parks.  PortAdventure features a Sesame Street section complete with Big Bird and his gang!

The parks are located outside the city center and the tour includes roundtrip transportation and admission to both parks.   Click here too book this awesome tour!

Ready to book your family vacation to Barcelona?  Let Savvy Nana Travel help you plan a family friendly custom itinerary!

Must See Towns in Spain

Must See Towns in Spain

Spain, home of Picasso, Gaudi, and Dali; just to name 3 of Spain’s great masters.  To many Spain invokes the sun drenched beaches of the Costa del Sol; the Prado Museum in Madrid; the cheers of the bullrings in Madrid, Seville, and Ronda; the whimsical buildings of Gaudi in Barcelona; tapas, and flamenco dancers.

Spain is all that and more!  Of course most tourists flock to Barcelona’s La Rambla and Madrid’s Plaza Mayor, and they should!  Both are definitely must see tourist stops when visiting Spain.   But there is more to Spain than it’s big cities.  A visit to the towns along the Costa del Sol, Spain’s sun coast, is a nice respite from the big cities; or a visit to northern Spain’s towns of Bilbao and Santiago de Compostela offer one a different perspective of this country that has a rich and diverse history.

Here are 5 Spanish towns that are definitely worth a visit next time you’re in Spain!

This article contains affiliate links

Santiago de Compostela

Located in North western Spain Santiago de Compostela is the capital of the autonomus community of Galicia.  The Old Town is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and has been a famous Christian pilgrimage town since the 9th. Century.

As the story goes in the early 9th. Century a hermit named Pelagius saw a light shining over a long forgotten Roman tomb in the forest.  Word quickly spread throughout the Christian world that the tomb of St. James the Greater, one of Jesus’ beloved apostles, was discovered in northwest area of the Iberian Peninsula.  Very soon a city sprang up around the  holy tomb and the site became one of the most important Christian pilgrimage towns.  Pilgrims came from all over Europe walking the route which became know as the Camino de Santiago.  Smaller towns sprang up along this route where hospitals, churches, and monasteries were built to support the Christians heading to the tomb and eventually the Cathedral that was built over the shrine.

Pilgrims from all over the world still journey to this town, many literally following in the footsteps of the 9th. century pilgrims.  It is very common and even expected to see pilgrims from all over the world with walking sticks and backpacks making their way to the town.  Tour companies even offer pilgrimage packages from France, Germany, or pretty much anywhere in Europe.

The Old Town and its surrounding monasteries and monuments are pretty much the only things in this area that’s visited by pilgrims and tourists.  The Old Town though it can be crowded with people is charming.  Beautiful Baroque, Romanesque, Gothic, and Neoclassical buildings line the narrow streets.  The Cathedral is considered a masterpiece of Romanesque architecture.  Over all in spite of the busy streets and plazas the town has a serene feel and is imbued with the feeling of devotion inspired by faithful who arduously make their way on foot to the shrine.  In my opinion it is a wonderful location to sit calmly and perhaps do a bit of soul searching.

Bilbao

Bilbao is the largest city in the autonomus community of Basque Country in northern Spain.  The Basque Country sits on the Atlantic coast and borders France on the north, in fact parts of the Basque Country are in France.

If you didn’t know the Basque Country locally known as Euskadi or País Vasco isn’t like any other part of Spain.  This region has its own language, cuisine, and geographic and cultural identity.

Bilbao is an very industrialized city built on the Nevrión river.  It’s a great place use as a base for exploring Basque Country.  Not to mention it is home to the futuristic looking Guggenheim Museum of Blibao.  This building which opened in 1997 has become an iconic emblem of Bilbao.  It’s built on the once very polluted banks of the Nevrión and has become a symbol of revitalization and marks the beginning of a new era for the city.  You can walk along the river bank for awesome views of Frank Gehry’s masterpiece, this otherworldly building that seems to undulate beneath the warm Bilbao sun.

The museum is home to celebrated works of modern and contemporary art.  Its permanent collection includes works by Klein, Rothko, Kiefer, and other modern and contemporary artists.  This is a must see for all fans of modern and contemporary art; and even if you’re not the building itself is a sight to behold!

Palma de Mallorca

Palma de Mallorca is the capital of and the autonomus community of the Balearic Islands of Spain.  It is situated on the south coast of the island of Mallorca of the east coast of Spain.

Palma has a rich and checkered past having been conquered and ruled by the Moors then reconquered by the Christians in the 13th. Century.  But even before that was settled by the Roman and Talayotic people.  The Gothic Cathedral of Palma dominated the center of the historic city center.  Radiating from this magnificent building are narrow medieval streets lined with townhouses and Baroque churches.  It’s filled with teeming public squares, bohemian neighborhoods, and outdoor markets selling all the bounty the island has to offer.  You’ll find museums, art galleries, cafes, shops, and beaches all under the golden Spanish sun that seems to shine benevolently over the island year round.

Granada

Granada is the capital city of the province of Granada in the autonomus community of Andalusia of Spain.  It is located at the foothills of the Sierra Nevada mountains where 4 rivers (Darro, Genil, Monachil, and Beiro Rivers) meet.  Although it is but an hour’s drive from the Mediterranean Coast of Spain it sits at an elevation of 2421 feet above sea level.

Granada like many Spanish towns and cities has a rich and varied history.  The region has been populated since 5500 BC and has experienced both Roman and Visigoth rule.  In 711 AD when the Umayyads conquered the region it brought large parts of the Iberian Peninsula under Moorish rule, this included Granada.

Granada is where the Alhambra, an Arab citadel and palace, and Generalife, the pleasure palace and gardens connected to the citadel are located.

Construction of the citadel began in the 11th. century when the Castle of the Alhambra was developed into a walled town and became a stronghold that dominated the city of Granada.  Construction of the pleasure palace and gardens of the Generalife began in the late 13th. century and the Alhambra is a culmination of Nasrid art and architecture that were undertaken between the 13th. and 14th. centuries.  At this time the Alhambra was a royal residence, citadel, and fortress that housed the Nasrid sultans and their senior officers including servants of the court and elite soldiers.

In 1492 the Catholic Monarch Ferdinand and Isabella finally expelled the last of the Moors from Granada and established permanent residency in the Alhambra.  It was here that Christopher Columbus requested their endorsement for his westward voyage that same year.  Of course the Catholic Monarchs and their subsequent heirs altered the Moorish citadel to suite their needs.  Portions of the citadel were destroyed when the First French Empire had control in the 18th. Century.  Restoration of the complex began in the 19th. century and continues to this day.

In 1984 the Alhambra complex was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is now the most visited tourist attraction in Spain.  Along with being a historic monument it is home to the Museum of the Alhambra and the Museum of Fine Arts.  It is definitely worth a visit!

Cartagena

Cartagena, Spain not to be confused with the city of the same name in Columbia, is a city in the autonomus community of Murcia in Spain’s southeastern Mediterranean coast.  It is also where one of Spain’s major naval stations is located.

Cartagena has been inhabited for over two millennia having been founded in 227 BC by the Carthaginian Hasdubral the Fair.  It was an important port city both during the rule under the Holy Roman Empire and the Umayyad Empire.

The mix of civilizations as well as its strategic harbor in Cartegena has resulted in a unique mix of artistic heritage.  Here you will find an abundance of Phoenician, Roman, Byzantine, and Moorish artifacts and landmarks including the remains of a Roman theater second largest on the Iberian Peninsula.  Wandering the streets and plazas you will find them lined with a plethora of Art Nouveau buildings including this impressive City Hall which greets tourists walking into the city from the cruise terminal.

It’s a small and compact city and very walkable.  You can find the remains of the Punic ramparts along the hill, and the restored Roman Theater as well as the Roman Colonnade and the House of Fortune in the city center.

Cartagena also has several museums.  Aside from the Roman Theater Museum there is ARQUA Marine Archaeology Museum, the Municipal Archaeology Museum, the Military Museum, the Spanish Civil War Museum, and the Naval Museum.

You can also catch the elevator or walk up the Castillo de la Concepción where you’ll find excellent views of the town, the harbor, and the mountains.

Then you can wander around Calle Mayor the pedestrian street paved with blue marble that connects the Plaza de San Sebastián to the city hall.  It’s lined with modernist buildings that are home to trendy shops, bars, and restaurants.  Don’t be afraid to grab a table for some tasty tapas and a glass of wine as you watch the world pass by!

 

Ready for that Spanish getaway?  Call Savvy Nana Travel, we specialize in family and group travel!

5 Things To Do In Cartagena, Spain

5 Things To Do In Cartagena, Spain

cartagenaCartagena is a Spanish city in the Murcia Region of Spain.  Located on Mediterranean coast in south eastern Spain, Cartagena is a major naval station.

Cartagena was founded by the Carthaginians around 227 BC.  It has been inhabited for over two millennia.  Over its long history it has been inhabited by Romans, Vandals, Visigoths, Byzantines, and Moors.  Each culture left their mark on this city so you will see  ancient Roman ruins to art nouveau architecture.

Cartagena is a small city and its main attractions are gathered around the city center.  It is easily navigated on foot although there are buses that can take you around to the major tourists sites.  Having said that here are 6 things to do in this city.

cartagenaRoman Theater Museum

This is arguably the jewel of Cartagena’s tourist sites.  This 2000 year old theater was discovered in 1988 under the ruins of the Old Cathedral which was destroyed in the Spanish Civil War.

The museum is actually 2 parts.  The first being the building which houses artifacts found within the theater as well as ceramics from the middle ages.  The second is a tour of the theater itself.  [spacer height=”-2px”]

 

 

cArtagenaPalacio Consistoria

This 100 year old triangular town hall is the most impressive modernist building in the city.

The building’s facade is composed entirely out of white marble and topped with zinc coated domes.

There are guided tours that will take you inside the building to see the ornate marble stairways and period tapestries.  [spacer height=”-2px”]

 

 

 

cartagenaCalle Mayor

cartagenaThis pedestrian street is paved with blue marble.  This street boasts some of Cartagena’s best modernist buildings and artwork.   It is also filled with cafes, restaurants, and shops.[spacer height=”-2px”]

 

 

 

cartagenaCastillo de la Concepción

Located on Cartagena’s highest hill Castillo de la Concepcion began its life as a Roman temple.  When the Moors arrived it was turned into an Islamic fortified palace.  What remains now are the ruins of the 13th. Century building built after the Christian’s “Re-conquest” of the city.

You can take the panoramic elevator to the top where you will see fantastic views of the harbor and the coastal mountains.  [spacer height=”-2px”]
 

 

cartagenaHave lunch or dinner

You can’t leave Cartagena without trying some Spanish dishes.  Catragena cuisine takes advantage of the city’s coastal location.  Many of their dishes have fish and other kinds of seafood.

My favorite meal in Spain is a nice pan of Paella.  It’s a rice dish that can be prepared with seafood, meats, our veggies.

I like to wash it down with a refreshing glass of Sangria.

 

Ready to plan your Spanish vacation?  Call Savvy Nana Travel.  We specialize in unique customized vacations!

 

6 Things to See & Do In and Around Malaga, Spain

malagaMalaga is a port city in Spain’s famed Costa del Sol.  Founded in the 8th. Century BC, Malaga is one of the oldest Mediterranean seaports and one of the oldest cities in the world.

Malaga has hosted a variety of civilizations starting with the Phoenicians who founded the first settlement they called Malaka.  It has been ruled by Romans, Arabs, and Christians.

 Malaga’s checkered past is reflected in the city’s landmarks.  In Malaga you’ll find the ruins of a Roman Theater, a 10th-century Moorish castle, the 13th-century Alcazaba, and a beautiful Baroque basilica.  Along with its rich history Malaga also boasts beautiful scenery, great weather year round, and wonderful beaches.

Malaga is also the birthplace of Pablo Picasso. Lovers of modern art  can visit  the Pablo Ruíz Picasso Foundation Birthplace Museum.

In recent years Malaga has also become a popular stop for cruise ships plying the Mediterranean Sea.  Cruisers stop for a day to take advantage of the lovely beaches, rich history, and seafood restaurants.  It can also be the gateway to Granada and a visit to the famous Alhambra.

Here are 5 things to see and do in and around Malaga.

malagaAlcazaba

Originally built in the 9th. Century this ancient castle was a stronghold for Moorish kings who ruled Spain for many centuries.

Perched high atop  Mount of Gibralfaro this fortified castle had 3 defense walls and 110 towers.

Today tourists can see some of the remaining towers, the entrance, and gardens in the courtyard.  It also houses the Museum of Malaga and the Archaeology Museum.

malagaMalaga Cathedral

Dominating Old Town on Calle Molina Larios is this grand 16th. Century church which was built on the site of an earlier mosque.

Visitors are impressed by the large indoor space with its many chapels.  This Cathedral is home to religious artwork and icons made by some of Spain’s great artists.

You can also climb the North Tower for some spectacular panoramic views.

 

 

 

 

malaga

Bishop’s Palace

Next to the Cathedral facing the Plaza of the Bishops you’ll find the colorful baroque building which is the Bishop’s Palace.

You can go inside and admire statues, the beautiful staircase and the exquisitely painted ceiling. The building is the bishop’s residence and is also home to the Diocesan Museum.

 

 

 

malagaOld Town

You can spend hours wandering the small alleys in the Old Town.  It’s a bustling place filled with shops, bars, restaurants, and landmarks.

You’ll find the Cathedral and Bishop’s Palace here, as well as the Pablo Ruíz Picasso Foundation Birthplace Museum.  This museum occupies the building where the great artist was born and showcases 233 pieces by the artist.

 

 

 

 

 

malagaMercado de Atarazanas

The town’s historic marketplace is definitely worth a visit.  Built on the ruins of a 14th. century Moorish shipyard this bustling market is where you’ll find vendors selling fruits, vegetables, cheeses, fish, meats, and more.

You can also admire the stained-glass window that depicts the historic landmarks of Málaga.

 

 

 

 

 

malagaAlhambra

Take a day trip to Granada (1 1/2 hours each way) and visit the Alhambra.

The Alhambra is a palace and fortress complex built and rebuilt during the  Nasrid dynasty.  After the reconquest of Granada in 1492 the site became the Royal Court of Ferdinand and Isabella (where Christopher Columbus received royal endorsement for his expedition).

Today it is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is one of Spain’s major tourist attractions.  It is a fine example of Spain’s Islamic architecture.

 

 

 

 

Ready to plan your vacation in the Costa del Sol?  Call Savvy Nana Travel, we specialize in unique customized vacations.

 

 

 

 

 

Barcelona – 10 Things Not to Miss in Barcelona

Barcelona – 10 Things Not to Miss in Barcelona

Barcelona is the cosmopolitan capital of the Catalonia region of Spain.  Barcelona is known for its architecture and art, and of course Catalan cuisine which is not the same as Spanish cuisine.

Located on the Mediterranean Sea, Barcelona is blessed with sub-tropical climate and is pleasant year round.  It is a favorite port for cruise ships on the Med route.  It’s a lively city filled with whimsical architecture, world class sports venues (it did host the 1992 Summer Olympic Games), beautiful theaters, bustling plazas, fashionable shops, trendy bars, and outstanding restaurants.  In short there is something for everyone in Barcelona, it’s one of my favorite cities!

You could spend a week in Barcelona and still not see it all.  Here are 10 must do things in and around Barcelona!

BarcelonaLa Rambla

Everyone who goes to Barcelona ends up wandering around La Rambla.

La Rambla is a tree lined pedestrian street in the heart of the city.  It connects the Passeig de Colóm (Columbus Monument) to the Plaça de Catalunya.

The 1.2 kilometer street is lined with street vendors, restaurants, bars, and shops.  It’s a favorite with tourists and locals.

There are many side streets branching along La Rambla that will lead to more Plaças and cool neighborhoods.

Don’t forget to grab a table at one of the outdoor restaurants for a snack or beverage.  It’s a great place to do some serious people watching.

But to stay alert on La Rambla.  Like many crowded areas in any city La Rambla is a hot spot for purse snatchers and pickpockets.

BarcelonaLa Boqueria

Mercat de Sant Josep or more commonly known as La Boqueria is a huge public market with an entrance on La Rambla.

It’s filled with colorful fruits and veggies, meats, fish, cheeses, and other delicious food.

You can eat your way thru La Boqueria at very reasonable prices as you gawk at the colorful displays.

It’s open Monday to Saturday from 8:00 am to 8:30 pm.  Closed on Sundays.

The market can get pretty crowded so stay alert and hang tight to your belongings![spacer height=”-20px”]

 

 

 

 

BarcelonaPlaça Reial

Located in Barcelona’s Gothic Quarter Plaça Reial is a lively square that’s popular with tourists and locals alike.

One of the entrances to this plaza is right off La Rambla, so it’s not hard to find.  If you exit from the gate by the Philippine Consulate you’ll end up in the heart of the Gothic Quarter.

Plaça Reial is busy pretty much most of the day, but it gets busier in the evenings where everyone makes their way there to eat, drink, and be merry.

Grab a seat and order a pitcher of Sangria, you deserve it after a day of wandering.  It’s a refreshing way to enjoy the evening and people watch as you sip!

 

BarcelonaSagrada Familia

The Sagrada Familia is a large unfinished Catholic church.  Construction began in 1882 under architect Francisco Paula de Villar who quit a year later.  Antoni Gaudí took over in 1883 and worked on it until his tragic death in 1926.  Even though Gaudí worked on the church for 43 years the project was less than a quarter complete at the time of his death.

Relying solely on private donations progress on the church construction is incredibly slow.  The plan is to finish construction by 2026, a hundred years after Gaudí’s death.

The Nativity façade and the crypt of the Expiatory Temple of the Sagrada Família were named UNESCO Cultural World Heritage in 2005.  They are part of the collection of sites that UNESCO calls “Works of Antoni Gaudí”

Today the church is open daily from 9:00 am to 6:00 or 7:00 pm depending on the time of year.  Tickets to the church can be purchased online and start at €15 per person for the basic ticket.   Guided tours and visits to the towers are not included in the basic ticket.  Click here for more ticket info and to purchase tickets.

You’ll find a few vendors and cafes right outside the Sagrada Familia.  If you’re tired an outdoor table at one of the cafes is perfect to rest and relax with a view of the beautiful church.

 

barcelonaPark Güell

This public park is one of Antoni Gaudí’s major works in Barcelona.  It’s a UNESCO World Heritage site and is part of the “Works of Gaudí”.

It’s a delightful place with gardens and whimsical statues and structures.  It’s definitely worth the visit.

It’s open daily from 8:00 am t0 5:30 or 8:00 pm depending on the season.

Tickets cost €8.  Click here for more info and to purchase tickets.

BarcelonaCasa Batlló

Located in the heart of Barcelona is’s Casa Batlló.  It is one of Gaudí’s masterpieces.  Gaudí began renovation on this private home in  1904 and finished in 1906.  It has gone thru several restorations since, always preserving this architectural treasure.

I have to admit this is one of my favorite buildings in Barcelona.  I love the “scaled” roof that resembles a dragon in my eyes.  It’s truly a testament to Gaudí’s creativity!

Today the owners open the doors to the public and also rent out spaces to be used as event venues.

The building is open daily from 9:00 am to 9:00 pm.  Admission cost is €23.50.

Click here for more info and to purchase tickets online.

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barcelonaCasa Milà

Casa Milà or more popularly call La Pedrera (Stone Quarry) is yet another Gaudí masterpiece and UNESCO World Heritage Site.  Located not far from Casa Batlló this building was designed and constructed by Gaudí between 1906 to 1912.

Today it is home to the cultural center with spaces for exhibitions and other public uses.  It of course show cases the works of Gaudí,

La Pedrera is open daily from 9:00 am to 8:30 pm.

Tickets cost €22.

Click here for more info and to purchase tickets online.

 

BArcelonaHospital de Sant Pau

The Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau came to be in 1401 with the merging of 6 hospitals in the city.  The original building is one of the  most important examples of Catalan Civil Gothic architecture.

The new hospital, designed by Lluís Domènech i Montaner, was laid on 15 January 1902, though the new facilities would not be opened until 1930.  This was built in the Modernista style.  The hospital complex was used until 2009 when it moved to the new complex.

Today the old complex has been converted into a museum and event Barcelona

For more info on hours, activities, and tickets click here.

 

Barceloneta

Head to the seaside neighborhood of Barceloneta for some sun and surf.  There are beaches along the coast.

The area is also known for the nightclubs and restaurants along the boardwalk.  You can get some of the best seafood paella at one of these restaurants.

It’s a fun place to hangout for families during the day, and for those who love the nightlife!  [spacer height=”-20px”]

 

 

 

 

barcelonaMontserrat Abbey

Located just 30 miles from Barcelona and accessible by car, train, or cable car, the Santa Maria de Montserrat is definitely worth a half day trip.

Nestled in the crags of the mountain of Montserrat this Benedictine Abbey was founded in the 9th. Century.  It still functions as a monastery to day housing about 80 monks.

The abbey is home to  Virgin of Montserrat (the black Madonna), who is Catalonia’s favourite saint, and is located in the sanctuary of the Mare de Déu de Montserrat, next to the Benedictine monastery nestling in the towers and crags of the mountain. The Escolania, Montserrat’s Boys’ Choir, is one of the oldest in Europe, and performs during religious ceremonies and communal prayers in the basilica.

The setting and the buildings are amazing!

Ready for a trip to Barcelona?  Let Savvy Nana Travel help you plan!  We specialize in custom travel itineraries for families, couples, and groups.  If you can dream it, we can  plan it!

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