About Me

I am a 45 year husband and dad, currently adjusting to life back in the United States after living in Italy for a little over two years. I love spending time with my family, cycling, model railroading, mosaics and watching TV and movies.

Monday, May 31, 2010

City Sightseeing Day

We slept in a bit this morning, got ready for the day, then headed downstairs for breakfast. The Novotel's we have stayed at have always had nice breakfasts, but this one was the nicest. They had a varied selection of fruits, cereals, donuts, cakes, eggs, sausages, juices and much more.

Our first stop was for some shopping at Decathlon. We brought too many warm clothes with us and it is seriously humid here. Katrina bought a couple pairs of crop pants and some sandals. I bought some shorts.

We decided to take the City Sightseeing bus tour this morning. City Sightseeing has three different routes you can take, all with the same ticket. We chose to ride on the Blue route this morning. The tour took us past many of the major sites in Barcelona.

Passeig Gracia has some very ornate street lamps.

Block of Discord

Casa Mila

Interesting architecture

Sagrada Familia

Barcelona football is huge!

Interesting art on a business tower.

The bus tour took two hours to complete the loop. We exited the bus on the Ramblas and decided it was time for lunch. I spotted some tasty looking nachos as we walked past the Hard Rock Cafe, so we found a table.

Brandon + map = keeping busy while we wait for our food.

Pet stand on the Ramblas

Looking toward the Barri Gotic, or Gothic Quarter

More architecture

The Ramblas runs from Placa del Catalunya in the center of the city, down to the harbor. Near the waterfront is a monument dedicated to Columbus. There is a tiny elevator that whisks you to the top for a view of the city. Brandon and I were a little freaked out by the swaying motion of the tower.

Christopher Columbus Column

Views from the column

Once we were back down on solid ground, it was time for a harbor cruise. Our Barcelona Cards included a 'free' harbor cruise.

Brandon at the stern

Ferries waiting for their next journey.

Fisherman heading into the harbor with the days catch. Notice the birds circling above the boats.

More interesting architecture

It was not the most interesting cruise we have ever taken. 1 1/2 hours roundtrip, mostly just cruising along the city waterfront. No narration. It was a good rest for our weary feet.

Entertaining ourselves on the harbor cruise.

Once we finished the harbor cruise, we hopped on the red line City Sightseeing bus. I guess today turned out to be a tour bus/boat day. The blue line took us around a few new areas on the city, including Montjuic (Mount of the Jews). A long time ago this area had an impressive fortress. Today it is home to buildings and arenas of the 1929 international fair and the 1992 Summer Olympics.

Back on the City Sightseeing bus.

Where can I find a taxi?

Catalan Art Museum

Brandon brought his harbor cruise humor with him on the bus tour.

The 'famous' Olympic broadcast tower, in the form of the Olympic torch.

Olympic Stadium

This blue line tour took two hours and dropped us back off at the bottom of the Ramblas. We walked up the Ramblas and found a nice cafe for dinner and Sangria. Ah, I love Sangria. After dinner we walked up to Placa del Catalunya to take some nighttime pictures.

Placa del Catalunya

Slow motion boy

Fountains of Placa del Catalunya

Another great Barcelona day. With tired and sore feet we made our way to the Metro and back to our hotel. Since it was dark when we arrived at our hotel, we were treated to the colorful lights of Torre Agbar.

Torre Agbar

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