I am now in full #vacationmode. I decided last minute to throw a few things in my Louis Vuitton and skip town. I needed to think of somewhere nearby, hot and that I’ve never been to before. Ding! Ding! Ding! Barcelona! Barcelona has been a dream of mine since the very first time I saw the move Vicky Cristina Barcelona. I longed to have an affair with an aggressive Spaniard, drink wine at a cool bar while listening to Spanish guitar till the wee hours of the morning. What ended up happening what far from that dream scenario but amazing none the less.

The vacation started in the AirFrance lounge where I ate far too many sandwiches and drank far too many glasses of wine. All was going swell when I stumbled onto the plane for more wine. By the time I got to Barcelona I felt like an extreme vacation goddess and ready to rip my clothes on and tan. So tan I did.  Day two I managed to pull it together for a sight-seeing extravaganza that included : La Sagrada Familia, Parc Guell, Paella and Sangria pitstop and Las Ramblas. The day really felt like a dream come true.

Tips and tricks for a hassle free sightseeing day in Barcelona, Spain are;

1. Book tickets in advance. I usually never do this but at the urging of the receptionist I did. I am so happy I did. The place was a mess of tourists and people crawling all over the place confused and excited and unattractive. I had my ticket printed and ready to go. Skipped the line and the tragic faces to have a smooth and easy experience. Once inside my breath was taken away by the gorgeous stained glass and intricate design. A must see.

2. Don’t buy tickets for Parc Guell. Another tourist trap, the best think about this park is the view of Barcelona from above, the live music throughout and the off-beaten track. Entrance to the park is free and rather than wait in lines behind one thousand other eager visitors, take a snack and your iphone to have a picnic and snap photos of the enchanted forest and the views.

3. Drink as much sangria as possible. I am not a fan of red wine. At all. (Faithful lover of Rose’). However, as the saying goes…”When in Rome..” Over the course of three days I probably consumed atleast a gallon of Sangria and it gave me life #yesgawd! Other treats that you must must try are torrone, and any pastry you can get your hands on to.

4. Avoid the hype of Las Ramblas. The avenue is amazing for shopping and being around crowds, but if you don’t want to go to Zara or be around a bunch of people (ew!) I recommend instead going to Las Ramblas del Poblenou. Its more calm, less crowded and closer to the beach. I stopped in for some tapas at La Mar Bella restaurant before going to the beach.

5. Be weary of what they call ‘beach’. I have been in Paris of months, and am super desperate for a little rest and relaxation on a white sandy beach. Barcelona offers more of a brownish, crowded, with green dark water. If however you can stomach the disappointment, swing off your top and tan up those tah-tahs like a local.

A few photos never hurt… Enjoy below!

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