Saturday, 4 August 2007

Gaudi’s Barcelona

Barcelona is by far the most wild, fun and safe city I have travelled to. Doring the day we romanced around Gaudi's Neverland like structures and at night we partied and hopped from one tapas bar to the other, the city seems like it was born for fun.
You can spend the day rambling along with friends at La Rambla until to reach the sea. Chill on the beach in the morning and then go check out the unusual Gaudi architecture rest of the day!!

Even if you don’t have time to visit a single museum or monument, be sure to visit La Ramblas. Buzzing at all hours, it is the most vibrant and colourful street you will ever come across. It is packed with vibrant street artists, news kiosks and vendors selling everything from live chickens to blue roses, live statues, and the most important of all, a massive fruit and vegetable market.

If museums are your thing, keep in mind admission is free on the first Sunday of every month. Antoni Gaudi’s work in Barcelona is for me the most fascinating of all.
Gaudí was a Catholic and a passionate architect. His masterpiece, La Sagrada Família is Barcelona’s most famous building and when I visited it, I was completely spell bound. He has taken inspiration from simple things in nature like a honey comb, sand dunes, etc and incorporated their design in his architecture. Its beautiful!
Apparently the construction of La Sagrada Familia began in 1882 though it’s only half-built, and its supposed to be complete by 2082. Let’s wait and watch!

Food, food and some more!!
The local dish is called paella, which is made of rice and a tomato base with loads of fish, meat or vegetables. Yumm!!
My all time favourite all over Spain were the tapas bars. Our bus guide gave us an insider tip to finding a great tapas bar. She said that we must look out for the ones that have tissues strewn all around and don’t look like they have the cleanest tables as the waiters are so busy serving the many patrons that there’s no time to clean up!

The nightlife here is quite cool, safe and most of all crazy! We went to Margarita Blue, one of the well known pubs there and had the specialty – Blue Margarita!
Oh, I must add - you will not miss India here at all! Why? Here this:
One of my group mates needed a shave, so we headed to the nearest salon. We find one enter, and what do we see? A huge poster of Aishwarya Rai in her Devdas outfit, a pleasant looking Asian man smiling at us and when he speaks (Pakistani Punjabi accent) to us, it is clear he is from apna India. It felt weird sitting in a Pakistani-Indian hair cutting salon in Barcelona listening to classic Hindi movie songs and watching foreigners walking past tattoo and contour shops opposite the road!

After this, we met quite a few Pakistanis, Bangladeshi and Indian’s settled there running Indian restaurants. Cool!

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