Arenys de Mar
Bellver de Cerdanya
Cabrera de Mar
Cerdanyola del Vallès
La Seu d'Urgell
Lloret de Mar
Lloret del mar
Monistrol de Montserrat
Pineda de Mar
Sant Feliu de Guixols
Tossa de Mar
Vilanova i la Geltrú
… I do recommend staying in the Gothic because it’s really the heart of what’s happening in the city. Just be aware, and stay clear of the following places -- La Rambla, (also known as La Rob-la), the Metro (one of the places I’ve seen the most robberies, averaging one sighting a week), and Calle Ferran (filled with drunk tourists).
If you're looking for a good free map of
, 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.
I went on a monthlong tour of Europe in 2005, visiting London, Paris, Rome, and
each for one week. Barcelona was the only city where I made a point to leave early. It does have its finer points -- the Marina and beaches were worth visiting -- but the heart of the city, Ramblas, had a very tense, uneasy feeling about it. I couldn't put my finger on it, but I knew that the city did not have a homey or vacationy feeling about it. In the evenings, it became apparent very quickly that this area draws a big drunk and wild crowd. Now, I love drinking and partying myself, but this was not a fun, happy crowd -- it was the sort of crowd that brought around lots of crime, drugs, and violence. I wish I could say that the Cultural scene would save my trip, but that was disappointing too. I was not moved by any one particular structure, and I am easily moved. If you find yourself there already, I recommend taking a bus tour of the city, stopping at the interesting spots, and heading to…
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.
I just got back from a five-day trip to
. I must say it was overall a huge disappointment. First the good. There are many things to see there during the day into the early evening hours. The metro system is fairly good overall so it does not take long to get to where you want to go. Taxi cabs fares are also fairly cheap compared to any other place I have been to and should be taken advantage of when you are pressed for time. At night many of the places that were closed or seemed shut down open up and several neighborhoods become lively. Now for the bad. The city has a horrendous stench that actually gets worse when you are not in a heavy tourist area. I have found that locals take their dogs for walks and allow them to pee and poop right on the sidewalk. I have also seen locals and tourists doing the same, including vomitting. So if you are wondering where the stench was coming from, now you know. In the tourist areas the Catalan people are mixed in how they treat you…
We had no problems in
. Everyone was friendly enough and those who didn't speak English were very patient with my pseudo-Spanish-Italian! Gorgeous cathedrals, fun art galleries, and the magic fountain is a spectacle in itself! Getting to Neucamp was an adventure (we ended up at the end of the line where no one had seen lost, pale Scottish people before) but once we were there it was easy enough to get back! Everything public oriented was in at least three languages and the streets were like most other cities. You just need to keep your eyes open for weirdos, a couple had their bag nicked as we were talking with them, but not much harm was done. I've been in cities where you'd be stabbed over a bag!
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