top 5 beaches catalunya

Our 5 Favorite Beaches

top 5 beaches catalunya

top 5 beaches catalunya

Great Beaches in Catalunya are not hard to come by, with a little exploring you will discover a heap of blue sea, white sands, pebble beaches, hidden coves, crystal clear waters, and vistas to make your Instagram look photoshopped! Here are our top 5 beaches in Catalunya, Spain, all within 2 hours driving from Barcelona.

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San Sebastian Beach in Barcelona lies at the foot of the w hotel. It stretched down the strand towards Barceloneta and offers superb views of all of Barcelonas beaches which curve away down to the Besos River. San Sebastian has a good selection of chiringuitos to choose from as well as offering water sports such as paddle boarding and sailing, from the club de natacio. Our favorite spot to take in the view is Salt, sit in one of their pretty beach chairs, your feet in the sand and sip on a cold beverage while you do. The water at San Sebastian is clear and the beach is a little less crowded than Barceloneta while still being close to the city center. Do be aware however that it is a nudist beach and you may get an eyefull. If this is something you are uncomfortable with, perhaps choose another beach.

Garraf Beach can be found at the foot of the tiny village of Garraf. It’s a short twenty minute train ride from Barcelona, and the small natural beach is clean and charming. Enjoy hunting for shells along the shore, or admire the quaint wooden holiday shacks, stacked in a row on the sand. They were originally built to house railway workers, but now house happy holidaymakers instead. The beach has a sprawling restaurant overlooking the sea and makes a good spot for lunch.

Aiguablava is as it’s name would suggest a wonderful little bright blue bay on the Costa Brava coast. Situated near Palafrugell and Begur, it is a popular destination in summer, and you will often find the beach and bay jam packed with holiday makers. Opt to visit slightly off season, when you can still enjoy the beach and water, but the crowds won’t be stomping on your towel or splashing you in the face. The beach offers diving, and has a number of fun paddle boats which you can rent and explore the coves and cliffs that seclude the waters of Aiguablava. BONUS BEACH – check out Sa Tuna nearby!

Sant Pol de Mar is a small village north of Barcelona, a pleasant train ride away. The sand is fine and the waters clear. There are a number of beaches to enjoy in the town and just outside of town, which you can drive or walk to. Some of the beaches are located below cliffs which offer great views down the coast and climbing to those more interested in the heights than the inviting waters.

Santa Cristina is a picturesque beach near Loret de Mar. Made up from a number of little coves, pick your preferred one, and enjoy. There is a convenient beach bar, and shady pines where you can picnic.

Interested in visiting Barcelona? Download our Guide to the city which includes off the beaten track tips, places of interest, restaurant guides and more! Come and stay with us, check our rental availability!

CAFES IN BARCELONA

4 Lovely cafes in Barcelona

CAFES IN BARCELONA

There are oodles of lovely coffee shops in Barcelona, it’s hard to pick a favorite. If you are struggling, why not try one of these 4 that are in our Top 10 cafes of Barcelona. We will be sure to add more later, but for now, enjoy some coffee, and sweet treats in style!

IMG_5589cafe cometa – cometa is the little sister cafe of cosmo cafe on c/enric granados. cometa is located in sant antoni on c/parlament, and is super petit, a tiny cute space, where you can squeeze in for a little jam on toast and coffee, and enjoy the art on the walls.

la criolla – off the beaten track, la criolla has a beautiful indoor terrace, they also serve cakes, pastries and a great menu del dia.

meatpacking bistro – labelling themselves a little slice of NYC in Barcelona, meatpacking bistro packs a good lunch and coffee in a crisp cafe designed by Lazaro Rosa Violan.

spice cafe– go for the carrot cake. its good! nuff said!

*BONUS CAFE lukumas (pictured above) serves delicious greek donuts and coffee in two locales, one in Gracia, and the other in Raval. the perfect spot for your sweet tooth!

Interested in coffee spots in Barcelona? see our post here…

COFFEE in barcelona

All About Coffee in Barcelona

COFFEE in barcelona

COFFEE in barcelona

The 3rd wave coffee phenomenon has landed in Barcelona. It’s true – a number of months ago, there were only a smattering of places that offered hand poured coffee, but now you can find yourself in a cool Spandi cafe (my new word for Spanish+Scandinavian Style)in two or three easy steps. Flickering filament lightbulbs highlight the choices – chemex, siphon, aeropress, french press, espresso, flat white, and trusty old hario. The white tiled walls and wooden accents complement the azulejos and copper piping, your coffee is fragrantly steaming in your hand as a barista tells you about the beans.

If this is something you get excited about, and I won’t lie, I love a good coffee in a pretty place, then you’re in luck, head to the following coffee shops and enjoy your brew!

Satan’s coffee in the Gothic quarter, this is a good cafe to stop at while exploring near the cathedral. Get lost in the alleyways trying to find their shop.

Onna cafe in Gracia serves up delicious coffee from Costa Rica, they also offer yummy snacks, and free wifi.

Syra coffee a hole in the wall coffee stand, with space for a few bar stools, Syra makes coffee with Onnas beans and they do a great takeaway

Nomad coffee on the fast track to being Barcelona’s number one coffee shop, they take their coffee seriously.

Cafes el Magnifico the oldest locale in Barcelona to serve great coffee. they have a roastery in their shop and supply a large number of the cafes and bistros in Barcelona with coffee beans, you can sample coffee from a large selection of growers, and they do a mean espresso.

SlowMov a recently opened space in Gracia, they serve filter coffee and espresso from a cute little shop/ meeting space. The coffee is direct trade, and they roast in house. You can buy their beans by the bag, or just enjoy a cuppa at their central table while you read a book.

 

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You can also find coffee in a few food trucks scattered around Barcelona, they turn up at various pop-up markets and with a little google investigation you’ll be able to sample their cups. Skye coffee and Nomad both have coffee trucks.

You can sample some great coffee at various Bistros through the city – Caravelle which serves coffee made with beans roasted by Right Side Coffee, a local roastery. Nomad also has a roastery in Poble Nou, and you can sign up for coffee workshops with both ventures.

If you are here in summer, be sure to try the cold brews on offer at Nomad and Onna. You can also try to find Cafes Fred who construct their own cold brews.

If all this is mumbo jumbo to you, here is a little guide to typical traditional spanish coffee found in most cafes in Barcelona.

Americano – large machine coffee with extra hot water

Cafe Largo – espresso shot with extra hot water

Cortado – espresso shot with milk

Carajillo – espresso shot with milk and your favorite alcohol (be specific carajillo con baileys…)

Cafe con Leche – milk coffee

A few other notable Spanish words you may want to throw around to make your coffee just how you like it –

sin espuma -without foam

leche desnatada – fat free milk

leche de soja – soya milk

caliente – hot

templado – warm

fria -cold

descafinado – decaffeinated

So perhaps you enjoy your coffee – “cafe con leche sin espuma, con leche desnatada,  fria, gracias!” – milk coffee without foam, with fat free cold milk. Thank you very much!

Also of interest is this post on the mystery of Torrefacto… love it or hate it, it’s some fascinating coffee history!

Enjoy your coffee at these lovely Barcelona cafes…

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EAT EAT EAT – a guide to some of Barcelonas Restaurants

guide to BARCELONA restaurants

guide to BARCELONA restaurants

What are some great places to sample Barcelona’s culinary offerings? It’s hard to choose, with over 2000 restaurants in the city, it can be overwhelming to know your pan con tomate from your patatas bravas. We’re here to help. With a list of over 20 restaurants that have all been tried and tested, you can’t go wrong. From Catalan dishes to Mediterranean fusion food. Slow food and fast food, romantic restaurants, michellin starred spots, and everything in between, plus some tips for dining in the Catalan Capital.

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So let’s break it down. Breakfast can be found in any cafe from as early as 7am until around 11am. Usually this consists of a croissant and a coffee, but more substantial fare can be found if you look hard enough. Bocadillos (sandwiches) with ham or cheese or a slice of spanish tortilla (omlette) may also be of interest if you have a big day of sight seeing planned. Finding a full english breakfast during the week may be hard, however Brunch has become increasingly popular here in Barcelona and on the weekends, every cafe and bistro in the city is offering some form of eggs benedict.

Coffee, that all important morning beverage, can be easily obtained in any cafe. The locals like theirs strong and dark, and if you order a cafe, you will be served an espresso. cafe con leche is coffee with milk, a cortado an espresso with milk, an americano is a machine coffee with extra water, supposedly to resemble a filter coffee. We recommend you try the cortado, and, if you are feeling adventurous, you can ask for a carajillo, which is a coffee with a dash of your preferred alcohol. A carajillo with Baileys can be mighty delicious, and on a cold morning or afternoon the perfect hand and tummy warmer.

Of course the ubiquitous cool-city artisanal coffee shops have been sprouting up in Barcelona too, and these days you can find handcrafted filter coffee in a number of hip cafes. Poured expertly, with fresh beans ground just for you, you wont be disappointed with daily caffeine fix. A myriad of cafes offer hario, chemex, aeropress and siphon coffees.

After breakfast and before lunch (which typically starts at around 12 noon and continues until 4pm) you may find yourself peckish. Join the locals in their merienda – this is a light snack between main meals. Especially if you only had a small bite for breakfast. Sometimes people enjoy a merienda after lunch and before dinner which only begins at 8pm, with most restaurants kitchens only opening at this hour, and diners only arriving at 9pm. You will find restaurants closed between lunch and dinner, so make sure you don’t miss their serving hours.

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TIP      In Spain, the midday meal menu is often half the price of that in the evening. Look for places advertising a menu del dia, which will consist of a starter, main, and dessert or coffee. Most come with a drink and water too. It’s a great way to try more expensive restaurants if you are traveling on a budget.

 

TRIED & TESTED

  • cafe godota family friendly bistro in gracia. their menu del dia options are good, and their salad and service to be recommended.
  • picnica cafe near el arc de triomf, famous for their brunches. try the huevos rancheros on the weekend.
  • brunch and cake a breakfast institution in barcelona, they serve breakfast all day everyday.
  • granja petiboa small cafe with high ceilings on psg sant joan, serving cafe food, fresh juices and good breakfasts.
  • can dendein poble nou, slightly off the beaten track, but somehow still very popular with a queue out the door on weekends. their brunch is worth the wait.

 

  • el nacionala large and beautiful space, with 4 restaurants and center bar. a bit pricey, but you pay for the ambiance as well as the food.
  • cafe emma french bistro cafe, lookout for the giant fork on the wall inside. a good menu selection and they serve oysters.
  • chivuosbranded as slow street food, their burgers and pulled pork sandwiches are delectable. an interesting selection of beers too.
  • bacoavoted the best burgers in barcelona, this spot with self service tables right on the beach is a good bet for a hungry tummy.
  • cafe federallovely cafe in cool sant antoni on coveted c/ parlament, good brunch and lunches.

 

  • sesamo vegetarian hotspot. serving fresh vegetarian dishes, this tiny restaurant never disappoints.
  • jaime beriestainbeautiful restaurant by the interior designer of the same name, perfect date night.
  • el glop catalan fare, this tavern serves typical dishes, and seasonal greats such as calçots. go with an empty stomach!
  • koy shunkamichellin starred restaurant well worth the high price tag, if you like japanese food. you are transported to japan as soon as you step inside.
  • el niño viejoone of the adria brothers newer eateries, they serve mexican tacos, make sure to book ahead of time.

 

  • la paradeta canteen style seafood. order by the gram, and they cook your food up and call your number. it’s not to be missed if it’s your first time to the city. we recommend the branch in el born, however there is also one near the sagrada famila and another in sitges!
  • torre d’alta marfancy pants restaunt at the top of the tower next to the harbour. stunning views, this place is good for special occasions.
  • puddingkid friendly cake and tea shop styled like wonderland, full of giant mushrooms and circus tent awnings. you do feel like you have been invited to the mad hatters tea party. a fun spot with good carrot cake!
  • hoffman patisseriefantastic bakery, they also have an indoor terrace upstairs for lunch.
  • chez cocorotiserie with a difference. a gorgeous restaurant designed by lazaro rosa violan who is responsible for a number of gorgeous locales in barcelona, their roasted acron fed chickens are another good reason to visit.

 

  • la llar de foctraditional catalan food, all wood fired meats, smoked cheeses, and tasty breads.
  • batuar in the cotton house hotel – lovely garden terrace restaurant in the hotel, great for a romantic dinner.
  • quimet & quimet a tourist hot spot in poble sec, their tapas and wine are worth the crowd, go for one, and then fill up around the corner on c/ blai, read our post on pintxos in poble sec.

You can find a bunch more tried and tested places to get grub in our downloadable guide

Top 5 Getaways Outside Barcelona

guide to BARCELONA getaways, all within 2 hours of the city

guide to BARCELONA getaways, all within 2 hours of the city

So you want to explore a little further afield?

Barcelona city is too crowded for you during the height of summer or you’ve been here before? Why not use the Catalan Capital as your base for exploring the nearby attractions? Barcelona is the perfect jumping point, with easy access from it’s airport, and a myriad of transport options available to the discerning traveler. Rent a car to head off the beaten track, or travel by bus or train. You can do a day trip or overnight at any of our 5 favorite Barcelona getaways, scroll down to find out more, or download our creative illustrated guide for more secrets to making your trip to Barcelona unforgettable.

Garraf – a sweet little village on the coast, just 20 minutes train ride from Plaza Catalunya. It has a charming row of beach shacks right on the beach and a restaurant (one of the only 2) perched on terraced levels in the cliff face overlooking the strand. It makes a superb day trip or a great little stop on the way to Sitges.

Montserrat – you can spot this curious mountain from Barcelona on a clear day, if you look in the right direction – northwest, its spires protrude from the landscape like fingers. You can take the train to the mountain, and then ascend to the working monastery abbey nestled halfway up which houses the famous Black Madonna. The mountain also has various hiking routes, and breath taking views. If you are a climber, there are plenty of rock climbing scrambles on the mountain.

Tarragona – a small city south of Barcelona, Tarragona boasts some lovely beaches and a fantastic Roman amphitheater over 2000 years old. A wander around Tarragona’s old city unveils fascinating historic buildings, old ruined walls, and is an easy day trip from Barcelona.

Tossa del Mar – a wonderful coastal village north of Barcelona in the Costa Brava, its curving bay and white sand beaches would make a great weekend excursion. Not only that, but Tossa also has a fantastic walled fort positioned overlooking the sea, you can clamber along the walls admiring the views as well as the old village contained within. There are plenty of hikes in the area along the coast, boat trips, snorkeling, fishing and some perfect places to enjoy a good seafood meal.

Cadaques – another great weekend trip, Cadaques is a perfect village with a tiny port. It is extremely picturesque, with white painted walls, red roofs, and shockingly blue waters off pebbly beaches. Truly Mediterranean in aspect. You can understand why the artist Dali chose to live nearby. His house has been turned into a museum, which is a delightful peek into his life. The garden is something to behold with whimsical swimming pool and surreal giant white egg sculptures. The nature reserve over the hill is worth exploring too, with stunning coves where you can go skinny dipping among the sea anemones.

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Guide to Barcelona’s Barrios

guide to BARCELONA neighborhoods

guide to BARCELONA neighborhoods

Barcelona is a very old city in which you can feel the weight of history; it is haunted by history. You cannot walk around it without perceiving it -Carlos Ruiz Zafon

Barcelona is a lively, beautiful city, well known for it’s cultural heritage. Graceful Modernista architecture line the vibrant streets, while Barcelonians while away time in leafy plazas. Gaudi mozaics merge with surreal Dali landscapes while strains of music can be heard drifting out of cafes or from buskers in the gothic quarter. Barcelona is a city of art and, as such, offers many interesting museums to the discerning traveller. You can brush up on your history in the Picasso or Miro Museums.

The many parks invite you to relax in the shade, and it’s easy to enjoy a picnic and watch the world wander past. The beaches beckon, and as the sun sets you may find yourself joining in with locals in a singalong, as many bring instruments onto the sands to play while appreciating the perfect Mediterranean view.

At night, the city comes alive, and you can watch a Flamenco show, or listen to classical guitar in the Palau de Musica. From spectacular dining experiences whipped up by the likes of Adria Ferran at his restaurant Tickets, to bustling markets where you can grab tapas on the go; from the vistas at the Tibidabo Fairground to quiet cloisters in a Gothic Cathedral; from an intimate Flamenco concert at 23 Robadors, to a thumping club scene at the beach…

Barcelona has something for everyone. Scroll down for our guide to Barcelona’s different neighborhoods and don’t forget you can download our quirky illustrated guide to the city here.

 

THE BARRIOS

Barcelona has 10 neighborhoods. All of our available rooms and apartments are located in Gracia.

Ciutat Vella comprises of the “old” city of Barcelona. Within it, you will find the barrios of El Born, the Gotic, Raval and the beach barrio of Barceloneta. The area is very popular with tourists, it contains the famous Las Ramblas walking street, many museums, historical sites including fascinating Roman artifacts, restaurants, bars, hotels and shops. You can also find the famous Boqueria Market, the Gothic Cathedral, The Santa Catarina Market, Citudella park and Plaza Catalunya here. It can get quite crowded and noisy, but the area retains it’s inheritance in the texture of the narrow streets and winding passageways.

Eixample is a large neighborhood with many Modernist Buildings. Here you can find some of Gaudi’s famous architectural gems along Passeig de Gracia, which connects the neighborhood of Gracia and Plaza Catalunya. It is a large shopping street and runs down the center of Barcelona. There are many restaurants, hotels, apartment buildings and shops as well as a few parks in the area, which is quite extensive and well worth some exploration. Check out our downloadable guidebook for more info on where to visit in this neighborhood.

Sants – Montjuic contains the prominent mountain of Montjuic, on which lies the Fort of Barcelona as well as the Olympic Stadium. The park on the hill is expansive and you can find many museums, including the Miro museum and the Catalan Art History museum which holds an impressive collection of medieval art, in the area. The street of Parallel connects this area with Ciutat Vella, and the area has many good restaurants. Read our post on Pintxos in Poble Sec.

Les Corts borders Ave Diagonal which runs across the center of the city. Here you will find the famous Camp Nou football stadium, as well as some large shopping malls, gardens, and the large Maternitat Hospital. The area is mainly residential.

Sarria / Sant Gervasi is a historically upper class residential neighborhood. There are some beautiful old houses in the neighborhood. It is quiet, has many schools, and Turo Park. You can also find a few good restaurants, The British Council, and some Consulates in the area. It is close to Diagonal and the business sector of Ave Diagonal. The natural park of the Collserola make up the top part of this neighborhood with fantastic views of Barcelona.

Horta Guinardo, Nou Barris and Sant Andreu are all residential neighborhoods on the outskirts of Barcelona. Some of Barcelona’s university campuses can be found here. There are also parks, schools, shopping malls etc as well as access to the natural park of the Collserola.

Sant Marti borders the beach of Barcelona and the Besos River. You can find the design Barrio of Poble Nou here. There is the famous Encants Market, as well as some interesting architecture which houses new fashion districts as well as designer cafes and shops in the area. Villa Olympica is also within this neighborhood, and borders the Ciutadella Park. There is a large cinema complex as well as many hotels along the beach.

Gracia is a central neighborhood above the Eixample. It used to be a village until Barcelona grew and encompassed it. It still retains a classic Catalan village feel and you can find many good restaurants, shops, bars, and squares in the area. It is family and student friendly with plenty of small schools. Park Guell designed by Antoni Gaudi lies at the top of the neighborhood.

You can find out more interesting insider tips and guides in our Illustrated Guide, it offers a unique artistic viewpoint to Barcelona, with walks, restaurant guide, and a few secrets…

read more about the barrios of barcelona here.

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Roman Spa Baths in Barcelona

Aire de Barcelona Spa. All images from http://airedebarcelona.com/ photos are not allowed in the space

As you descend the stairs, the lights dim, and the spicy smell of burning incense fills your lungs. Candles flicker, glinting off the underground walls, and shimmering in the pools. We are greeted at the bottom of the stairs by a helpful attendant who explains how to use the baths at the Aire de Barcelona. A hammam public bath, fully restored in it’s original Roman form, and as you glide through the warm waters you can appreciate the ancient vaulted ceilings and exposed walls.

Go for the Salt baths, and relaxing interior. Sink into the warm water and sizzle in frothy jet pools. The Aire also offers massages and facials. The baths are open until late and we booked the last 2 hours of the day. It seemed like quite a popular time to go, but we did not find it too crowded and it was easy to relax.

When you visit, you only need bring your bathing suit. Bikinis are fine too. You are provided with towels and little slippers which you wear into the pools. I could recommend it as a nice date with a significant other, ( the baths are unisex) before you head out for a late dinner in the old neighbourhood of El Born. There are plenty of great restaurants nearby. And after soaking for an hour or two it’s a lovely way to end an evening.

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Best BCN Rooftop Terraces

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With the sinking sun going down at around 9pm, the long summer afternoons stretch out and Barcelona reclines in the balmy weather. It’s the perfect time to be outside sipping a cold drink or cocktail, and where better to do this than on the rooftop. With vistas reaching from montaña to mar, Barcelona offers some excellent sundowner spots.

Usually I enjoy them on my own terrace, this being the cheapest and easiest option, but if you are visiting the city and don’t have your own access to a private terrace or rooftop there are plenty of swish spots to spoil yourself with views and expensive drinks. And why not treat yourself? It’s summer, and you only live once!

I love how the “terraza” combines the outside and the inside, and I have busily been trying to create my own lounge-garden. And what better places to gather inspiration than all the fancy hotels in town. I have been on a bit of a rooftop exploring kick. So far I have made myself at home on the terraces at the Grand Central Hotel and the Ohla Hotel. Both are situated on Via Laitana, and both have different views over the city. It’s easy to unwind on the couches laid out, and watch the stars slowly peek out of the settling dusk.

You can find fantastic spots at Hotel Omm, Hotel Arts, Hotel Alma (which has a garden terrace), The Pulitzer, The Mandarin Oriental, Barcelo Raval, and Casa Fuster, but I’m sure there are plenty more, so exchange your beach sandals for heels, stuff your wallet with euros, and pretend you just stepped off your yacht for an evening out with a view. Go on spoil yourself!

If you have already tried these lovely terraces, there are even more to choose from. Try the the new Cotton House Hotel or the Yurbban!

Festa Major de Gracia

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The annual Gracia Festival is not to be missed. The event of the summer holidays, Barcelona awakens out of deep summer slumber and the streets of Gracia come alive during August.

If you are in Barcelona during this time, the festivities are something to behold! If you are staying in the area, be sure to bring earplugs, or resign yourself to partying for a week, not such a bad thing to do in Barcelona!

The neighborhood associations of various streets in the barrio have been at work for months, preparing the massive street decorations. Each group competes for the illustrious prize of top street, and everyone eats, drinks and parties into the late night under a canopy of papiermaché and plastic decorations. There are concerts and various workshops in each of the areas, get hold of a map, and do an excursion to visit all the various attractions. You never know what you may find around the corner – a street turned into Jurassic Park or another into the cherry blossomed avenues of Japan.

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Pinxos in Poble Sec

pintxos barcelona street food

Part of the newest Hipster route, you know the one – filled with trend setting flower beards and horn-rim specs. Well not quite, although Calle Blai has blossomed, it still retains its colourful textures – Factory façades and a distinct Latino tone.

Welcome to Poble Sec. The barrio borders Montjuic and is a short walk from Las Ramblas. Slightly hilly it is home to the El Grec theatre and the Apollo theatre and the neighborhood boasts a distinctly colourful style. Nibbling on pintxos, at the various bars, requires a fair amount of co-ordination. Along the street we hopped, gobbling up pintxos like snapping turtles and gulping the house beer in each spot. Squeezing into tight spaces, our movements being more theatric as the evening wore on. It’s proved to be a great late afternoon’s activity. People watched, enjoy some rays on the terraces set up along the road, and talk about the food. Pintxos, literally translated as “Thorns”, each little tapa, or bite size snack comes with a longish tooth pick holding a tower of various flavours together on a slice of bread. This could be anything from a cube of spanish tortilla, a cherry tomato, a sliver of anchovy, a spiced pepper, a dash of sausage, sautéed onion, all wildy balanced and skewered by said thorn. The challenge is to get it all in your mouth, follow it by a slurp of your preferred beverage and then pick your teeth with a flourish at the end. If you cannot visit Basque Country in northern Spain, the original home of the pintxos do yourself a favour and organise a little tapas & pintxos journey in Poble Sec from Bar to Bar.

pintxos in barcelona

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Bicycle Anyone?

In Gracia alone there are not one but three bicycle themed restaurant-cafe-bars. Three! And that’s only in one small neighbourhood of Barcelona! There are plenty of other places where the bicycle can be stashed or stowed while you eat, or it’s spoked image is ubiquitous on the walls in the form of artwork or frame, parts on display. So what makes this form of bipedal transport so popular that it has rung it’s way into the heart of Barcelona, enough so that 3 cafes have made it their central theme. It’s classic form, geometric lines, gear and wheels have slowly but surely become a popular graphic symbol. Do you have a bike cafe in your city? When next you wend your way up to my neighbourhood, be sure to check out one of the following bike friendly spots.

Bicioci Bike Cafe
Carrer de Venus, 1-3
Barcelona, Spain
934 58 20 44
Serving up Pizza in the evening, this cafe has bikes on the walls and the bartender seems like the perfect caricature of the Italian cyclist, small cycling hat and all, he could have stepped out of the Triplets of Belville. They also offer weekend brunch.

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El Ciclista
C/Mozart nº18
Barcelona, Spain
933 68 53 02
A popular bar in Gracia, it’s small, gets jam packed, but serves up good music and delicious gin and tonics. The whole places feels like you are inside a miniature bike factory, from glass holding chandeliers made from bicycle wheels to the door which is opened by a deconstructed bike chain and various other bike parts.

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La Bicicleta

C/Verdi 65
Barcelona, Spain
931 28 14 16
Recently opened on ever popular Calle Verdi, this market produce restaurant, offers fresh goods in daily specials. Dine in their cozy cafe or enjoy the ever popular vermut while watching pedestrians pass by under their big blue bicycle in the window.

all photos courtesy each locale’s web page, title image by Enric Fradera, page image by Jai Kapoor