A couple of weeks ago I finally went to Barcelona after having it on my list for so long! I’d heard so much about it so there were big expectations to meet. Luckily it didn’t disappoint. Barcelona to me was the perfect balance of beauty and busy. It’s a lot cleaner than London (although there are some questionable smells around) but still has that similar buzz and vibe while somehow feeling a lot more laid back. The buildings, port, shops and city in general are beautiful; I’d recommend visiting to anyone!
It’s taken a while but here it is; my outfits, the places I’d recommend visiting and things I’d recommend doing. Of course, the blogger in me scouted out the best instagrammable places in the city so I have a few recommendations if you’re after some picture perfect spots. We went for four days which was a really good amount of time to fit everything in. We’d found a cute little apartment in a block called Amister Apartments which is right opposite Starbucks ~ priorities ~ and a minute walk from Las Ramblas. Plus only a 20 minute transfer from the airport -it was right in the middle of everywhere we visited so the perfect location – I would definitely recommend. If you want more day-by-day snaps take a look at my ‘Barcelona’ story highlight on my Instagram @kirstyeelizabeth.
Luckily the weather was warm and sunny most of the time although the last day as was a bit colder and rained a bit so I ended up wearing my airport outfit (plus I may have been slightly *read: ridiculously* hungover so a hoodie and leggings was all I could manage). I’m much more of a skirt or shorts kinda girl rather than really feminine dresses and found most of these daytime outfits in Topshop! You can shop everything below.
Shop the Outfits
Chök is an absolute must-visit. A chocolate kitchen specialising in cronuts with plenty more to offer. Featuring a cronut wall, Instagramable floors and interior what more could you want. If you haven’t had a cronut, it’s a hybrid of a croissant and a doughnut and yes, it is as good as it sounds. As a Nutella addict, naturally I went for the nutella filled Oreo cronut and well, the proof is in the pudding. For more food porn from Chök have a look at their Instagram.
Brunch and Cake
Flax and Kale
A healthy restaurant serving mainly plant-based dishes. With high-ceilings, cute Spanish looking interior and bathroom GOALS this is another spot for the Instagrammer in you. The menu includes all the brunch classics with adjustments to make them as healthy and tasty as possible. The acai bowl I had was delicious and they offer a selection of juices/smoothies and pulses which they make fresh on site. They also have a bakery selection so even if you don’t want a full meal it’s worth a visit.
This was a very busy little bakery which had every type of savoury pastry you could want plus all the cakes and sweet treats round the other side. While I didn’t actually try anything here (because I was too hungover), anywhere which has a sign saying ‘save the earth, it’s the only planet with chocolate’ is in my good books tbh! Word on the grapevine is the foods really good too!
An Instagrammers heaven. This place is situated on a quiet corner about 10 minutes from the top of Las Ramblas (5 minutes from Amister apartments where we stayed) and has a long table outside with benches either side plus tables all around the front of the café which are the perfect instagrammable spots. Annoyingly all of these were taken when we went and the lighting inside is very yellow so if you are after a ‘grammable photo make sure you get there early of be prepared to wait! *The streets surrounding are also perfect to capture those street shots FYI.* The portion sizes are massive and the food is so worth the wait. One thing I will say is that as it is so popular and busy, the staff will cram you in wherever and are customer service isn’t the priority!
I had the oat pancakes which literally fill the whole plate they’re so big – I can definitely recommend. If you’re not already convinced, take a look at their Instagram…
What to Do/See
- Hop-on hop-off bus tour – this is an absolute must for your first visit to Barcelona. It takes you round all the sites and there’s a bus every 15 minutes so you can fit all the main sites in one day (there are different routes you can do on different days or choose the one which suits you best).
- Hire bikes – this will cost you around 8-12 euros for the whole day. We did this and ended up only needing them for a half day although it’s nice to have the option. If there’s anything you missed on your hop-on hop-off bus tour, this is another easy way to see the city. We went to Park Güell on bikes but be warned, it’s up hill ALL THE WAY.
- Go to the La Boqueria market just off Las Ramblas. It has all kinds of fresh food, smoothies and cured meat. Saturday is the best day to go.
- Go down to the port. If you walk all the way to the end of Las Ramblas you will come to the port. Firstly, the cross-roads here make for a great insta shot FYI *see above* and secondly (more importantly) the port is well worth a visit for the views, restaurants and shops – on the end of the pier is a big shopping centre.
- Explore the Gothic Quarter – We did this a couple of times as there are so many cute little boutique shops, tapas restaurants and bars. A must-go is the sweet shops called Happy Pills. If you’re at all like me and hate pick n’ mix (because all the kids put their grubby hands in..) have no fear everyone wears plastic gloves.
- Go shopping! There is an insanely beautiful Zara as well as a Sephora, H&M etc. etc. so take some extra cash!
- ‘First Cocktail Bar’ – A small little bar with loud music (playing all the classics), plenty of gin and post it notes on every surface. This place was a lot of fun and worth a visit!
- Espit Chupitos – A bar purely serving shots. Every flavour and name imaginable, this is another fun place if you’re up for a night out out.
- W Hotel rooftop bar – similar to London’s Radio rooftop bar this place has amazing views and great cocktails. No need to book just get up there for sunset for the best views!
- Go out for dinner at Placa Reial – a square in Old Town with restaurants on all sides – take your pick!