Exploring Barcelona

Casa Batlló, a remodel of a previously built house, designed by Antoni Gaudí.

Each time I visit Barcelona, I discover new neighborhoods, cafes and restaurants, and alleyways of colorful street art. And then there are the iconic sites I must see again because they’re just so magnificent and exploring them never gets old, like all of Gaudí’s architectural masterpieces. I don’t quite remember what the ever-changing Sagrada Familia looked like in 2000, on my first visit, or in 2010, when I returned for several days after week on Ibiza. On my most recent trip, the Sagrada Familia seemed taller on the outside, with more details finished on its facade, while parts of the interior had evolved, and sections once inaccessible were now open.

Exploring Barcelona with my parents, who had never been, meant I could revisit many sites with fresh eyes. I also treated them to their first Airbnb stay while in the city — I booked a huge, beautifully restored apartment in the Dreta de l’Eixample with gorgeous tiled floors, antiques, creaky doors, and high ceilings. The location was a bit further from where I wanted to base ourselves, but the apartment was unique and worth the extra few minutes of walking.

Until next visit . . .

Gaudi’s Gingerbread House at Park Guell.
Tile-shard mosaic details along the staircase, and the Gingerbread House in the background, at Parc Guell.
At one of the entrances of Parc Guell.
Walking down an alleyway in El Born, en route to the Picasso Museum.
Door art in the El Born neighborhood.
Street art by Crisp in El Born.
The interior ceiling of the Sagrada Familia.
One of the many details on the exterior of the Sagrada Familia.
One of the doors of the Sagrada Familia. I’ve taken this same exact photo on each visit.
A colorful door in El Born.
Social media street art by Crisp, found in El Born.
Churros con chocolate at Petritxol Cafe.
Arches on the museum level of La Pedrera.
One of the “chimneys” on the roof of La Pedrera.
Art in the Gothic Quarter.
A copy of Airbnb magazine on a table in our Airbnb.
One of several tile patterns in our Airbnb.

All photos taken with an iPhone 7 — some originally posted on Instagram @cherilucasrowlands.

Published by Cheri Lucas Rowlands

I am an editor at Longreads. For over a decade, I've worked on curation, editing, and storytelling projects across Automattic, including WordPress.com.

25 thoughts on “Exploring Barcelona

  1. Thank you for sharing this so that I have a list of places to start on my next trip to Barcelona, I don’t know when it will be, my first was this year but I definitely want to return.

  2. My mouth is yearning for more of the chocolat and churros and thanking you again for being an awesome “travel agent/tour guide.” You and Nick made our trip on cruise control. ✈️🛳 😋❤️

  3. Warms my heart to see that you can still get xocolata amb xurros at Petritxol. And it looks like you got a lot of wonderful overcast photography light.

  4. I assume you were there before the recent events that shook and are still shaking Catalonia and Spain. Barcelona is a gorgeous city that I find much more interesting than Madrid, personally. There are tight ties between Catalonia and France, due to the civil war and Franco, and my mouth watered when I saw your photo of churros that the mother of a friend of mine used to bake for Xmas. I could never have only one 🙂
    Gorgeous photos as always. It’s time for me to consider a new iPhone and I’m amazed by the quality of yours, taken with an iPhone 7.

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