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Catalogne Auberges de Jeunesse


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PEE-U! This city STINKS!!!! Smelliest city I've ever been too. It's just generally cramped, crowded, dirty, and filthy. I was really excited to be going to Barcelone, after having so many people tell me how great it was, but totally dissappointed after having spent 6 days there. I thought it would be a bright, open, airy, mediterranean city with a great climate and interesting people. It was the total opposite. I've never seen so many ugly people! And the humidity made New York seem like a paradise. I'll take Madrid any day over Barcelona. Though I was never robbed, a surprising number of people told me they had their pockets picked. Yes the Sagrada Famillia is magnificent, and ok, I had a GREAT time hanging out in park Ciutadella on Sunday, but overall I wouldn't go back.
Please watch your bags and personal belongings. We were warned but my friend set her bag down at an internet cafe, right next to her foot, and it was stolen within a couple minutes. I've heard dozens of theft stories from other Barcelone visitors. Please never put your things down and be aware! Have fun... oh yeah, and Dino's Gelato is amazing!
If you're looking for a good free map of Barcelone, don't use the one the tourist office gives you for the Bus Turistic. Instead, ask them for a brochure from City Tour by ALSAtouring. This brochure includes a map that actually details all of Barcelona's streets, especially the confusing ones in Barri Gotic and Ribera. This is essential to finding your way around.
Barcelone is great! There is SO much to do. If you are bored you must be dead or not trying, because there is something for everyone. Try and visit early in the summer or late spring. The weather will be warm but not hot and the crowds will be smaller. You MUST eat at Quinze Nits in Placa Real. But be warned there will be a line up that starts an hour before they open (8ish) and will remain until after 12. Also, try to go to the Chocolate Museum.
Look after your bags! There are many many thieves lingering in the metro stations and kind of push up against you and try and steal your things in your bags. So be cautious and hold on tight to your valuables. Barcelone is amazing though! The architecture and beach and sights and people are all fantastic. I suppose like in any place you have to be careful. It's also very easy to get lost in the laneways. And at nighttime there are many drug deals and dodgy people out that will try and sell you anything!
Barcelone is, without a doubt, my favourite city in Europe, it's hot, seasoned, rich, fun, exciting and very cheap!! Lots of interesting artists doing their thing on the streets, in the parks and of course on the beach. The atmosphere is more than chilled in this sizzling hot environment... you must go to the sonar festival and enjoy sitting under the palm trees as the early morning sun gradually heats up yet another glorious day. PS -- Rent a car if you can.


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