Barcelona in 2 days : are you ready ?
Hotel Duquesa de Cardona Barcelona is one of the front door to the Gothic quarter , the Born Quarter, and also to the Barceloneta neighbourhood.
DAY 1 : THE HISTORIC CENTER: Gothic, Born, Barceloneta
Map from the Gothic quarter and Born quarter of Barcelona
Gothic quarter in the morning
Have a wonderful breakfast at the Duquesa de Cardona, and then depart from the front door of the hotel, and taking the first on the righ, street Simó Oller, we iniciate our route.
Simó Oller st - Avinyó Street – Ferran street – plaça Sant Jaume – Call Jueu – plaça Sant Felip Neri – plaça del Rei – Cathedral and closter . To discover these streets may take you a couple of hours, not only because of the historical monuments, but also because of the bunch of shops , tea shops and craftwork you may find.
It is also worth it to stop at Petrítxol Street and enjoy some “churros con chocolates”, one of the most popular things to do for locals.
Boqueria market or Santa Caterina market for lunch
Delicious spots to discover and to eat! At the Boqueria market you have the option of taking small tapas sold in some of the food shops, meanwhile you sneak around the alleys ; or you try one of our favourite restaurants , specially for fresh fish: “El cochinillo loco ” or El Quim de la Boqueria.
In Santa Caterina market, less visited by tourists, the bars of tapas at the front door may size your day. Remember: better to eat at the bar than in a table. That’s how we do it !
Born quarter in the afternoon
We start with a visit to Picasso Museum and his early days paintures. Located on Montcada street, we may continue our visit to the neogothic church Santa Maria del Mar, amazing piece of art, and famous because of the book writen by Ildefons Falcones about the construction of the building.
Shopping victims will be also lucky to visit this area: local designers for shoes and clothes are overall the little streets. Vintage decoration and style have a lot of presence on these little alleys. One of the shops to recommend is www.mrandmisscolors.com
First an arabian spa, and then diner
Arabian baths Aire Barcelona
In front of Ciudadela parc, the arabian spa Aire will be the perfect spot for recovering youself of the several kilometers you may have walked so far since the day started. Cold pool, salty pool, extra warm pool, finish sauna, arabian sauna, massages, and many other skin and relaxing treatments for your body. A real pleasure to be reserved from your home country! Do not expect to find a gap if you just show up at Aire.
Fridays and saturdays are the big days for locals to go out for diner. We recommend you for that reason, to make a reservation in advance. Our suggestions are as follows:
CAN SOLÉ, at Barceloneta neighbourhood. It is a about 5 minutes walk from hotel Duquesa de Cardona Barcelona. Excellent because of the tradition, the product in general, but specially for the fresh fish and of course, the experience of the service
LA CARASSA , at Born quarter, Hidden gem, original, specialized on fondues. Excellent option for winter
LA TERRASSA DEL DUQUESA , with amazing views over the harbour, opened all year, but take note that on high season, from may to september, you are able to enjoy excellent barbeque plates ( fish, shellfish and meat ), to end with a fantastic cocktail or gin & tonic
Day 2 : THE MODERNIST QUARTER
Casa Batlló , one of the masterpieces of Gaudi
Morning: Sagrada Familia and Parc Güell
Both of them can be booked in advance, and that’s probably the best idea , since queus in high season are for more than an hour.
The Sagrada Familia it is mean to be seen in the inside, and in the outside. Do not miss to visit one of the two towers, since you will have a closer view to the details of the towers.
From the Sagrada Familia take a taxi to Parc Güell, and enjoy a little aperitiv at the bar on the higher floor.
Lunch in Passeig de Gràcia
Take the metro from Lesseps at Parc Güell and stop in Diagonal, or take a taxi. Theser are our restaurant recommendation on this area:
BOCA GRANDE ( www.bocagrande.cat ) , a fine decorated hotel with a wonderful selection of tapas and overqualifed fishes and meat. Our favourite: eggs with truffle and “iberian panceta” and the selection of cheeses
Modernist building highlights in the afternoon
After Boca Grande, go back to Passeig de Gràcia and walk on the most stylishly fashionable street of the city, admiring monuments like La Pedrera, Casa Batlló, Casa Ametller and visit at least one of them if you have the time. Difficult just to choose one. Take note that La Pedrera is algo possible to visit at night between 20.30 and 23.30 h and enjoy www.lapedrera.com/en/home
Before diner, the Palau de la Música Catalana , masterpiece of the architect Lluis Domenech i Montaner, offers shows such spanish guitar, flamenco, classic music and different artistic activities. Visit their website and choose your favourite show www.palaumusica.cat
Enjoying your last night in town
Go for some tapas to Blai street , at Poble Sec. It is about 15 minutes walk from Hotel Duquesa de Cardona . The ancient quarter of the barcelonian theatres and moulin rouge shows offers a great variarity of tapas bars and great street atmosphere. You can even walk to Plaça Espanya and see the magic coloured fountains dancing with music ( check timetable , it changes from high season to low season )