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Barcelona for a day- out of the way tips?

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
I was hoping to get some feedback for those in the know, or locals. We're staying in Barcelona for a day and a half before a cruise next week. It's our first time in the City.

We are staying at the Hesperia Ramblas. I figure a quick walk through Las Ramblas and the nearby market, but wanted to hit some other, off-the beaten path sites.

We looked at taking a hop on/hop off bus tour to get around. http://www.barcelonasightseeing.net/...l&offerId=5243

For dinner I made reservations at this seafood place. Marissco - http://www.mariscco.com/

Any suggestions for places off the beaten path, not so touristy? Local favorites, near where we are staying/eating, to go for a drink? And is the Gothic Quarter worth a visit?

Thanks
post #2 of 8
Not a local, but...

Barri Gotic and neighboring Born are definitely worth a ramble. Very atmospheric, quite compact to have a feel in half a day and lots of small restaurants and cafes plus shops to visit. Very nice.

A bit further, the Gracia district has a different feel than the more touristed areas. This could be what you are looking for, but if I had to choose between the Barri Gotic and Gracia for a short visit as yours, I'd probably choose the Barri after all. But you can always take the metro, a few stops down the line and see if the Gracia district is to your liking. Just a little north of Gracia is Parc Guell which is excellent but also touristed.

La Rambla is a tourist trap in my opinion, but the food market is great. Definitely go there as planned.

It's been almost three years since my last visit so I'm not up to date with restaurants, but a good tip is to have lunch at an upscale place as (at least when I was last there) by the law the restaurants are obliged to offer a cheap lunch menu. You may want to check this in advance if possible. The Barri Gotic and Born are stuffed with atmospheric bars so it's best just to walk around and see what's nice. Oh, they all are. Have a good time.
post #3 of 8
Thread Starter 
Thanks
post #4 of 8
I greatly enjoyed eating at Cal Pep when I visited last.
post #5 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by inimitable View Post
I greatly enjoyed eating at Cal Pep when I visited last.

Yes Cal Pep is great, especially to have your meal on the counter watching the cooks do their thing. Just go there a little earlier than the place opens to secure yourself a seat! The restaurant is small and there is always a queue at the opening time. The food is excellent, just remember these guys don't offer a cheap lunch menu...
post #6 of 8
I second the suggestion for Parc Guell. It's certainly unique. It has the reputation as a haven for pickpockets, although we didn't have any problems. It is not easily accessed by public transit --- prepare yourself for a long, uphill walk from the nearest station. Entry to the park is free.

I would also suggest the cablecar from Montjuic Mountain, only because you're leaving the port by cruiseship. There will almost certainly be ships at the port, and you'll go right overtop of them. It makes for an interesting perspective before you board your ship.

We also rented bikes and rode them to the seafront. I don't know what it's called, but it's near the Ritz-Carlton Hotel Arts. There are outdoor cafes there --- a great way to spend an hour or so.
post #7 of 8
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mauser View Post
Not a local, but...

Barri Gotic and neighboring Born are definitely worth a ramble. Very atmospheric, quite compact to have a feel in half a day and lots of small restaurants and cafes plus shops to visit. Very nice.

A bit further, the Gracia district has a different feel than the more touristed areas. This could be what you are looking for, but if I had to choose between the Barri Gotic and Gracia for a short visit as yours, I'd probably choose the Barri after all. But you can always take the metro, a few stops down the line and see if the Gracia district is to your liking. Just a little north of Gracia is Parc Guell which is excellent but also touristed.

La Rambla is a tourist trap in my opinion, but the food market is great. Definitely go there as planned.

It's been almost three years since my last visit so I'm not up to date with restaurants, but a good tip is to have lunch at an upscale place as (at least when I was last there) by the law the restaurants are obliged to offer a cheap lunch menu. You may want to check this in advance if possible. The Barri Gotic and Born are stuffed with atmospheric bars so it's best just to walk around and see what's nice. Oh, they all are. Have a good time.

Hit Barri Gotic and Gracia. Spent a lot of time walking (and eating) through the Boqueria. Las Ramblas took all of 10 minutes to get the feel for. Getting lost on the side streets was infinitely more interesting!
post #8 of 8
SD1 - sounds like your trip succeeded well and most definitely getting quickly off the Rambla is the thing to do.
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