Barcelona - May 18
We arrived at Barcelona Airport at 10 a.m., bubbling with excitement.! We zoomed through passport control and boarded the coach all thinking the same thing: what would the hostel be like? After storing our bags we started the sunny walk to La boquería. We arrived at the market after stopping to briefly admire the historic Gaudí houses and then were let loose on the market stalls to find everything from gorgeous gelato to pureed papaya.
Later that day, we made the trek back to be reunited with everyone and explored the lovely hostel; there was even a roof terrace! After a good night’s sleep (for most) we made the short journey to La Sagrada Familia! We met our guides and with tablets and audio guides in tow, we explored the Gaudí designed cathedral. For lunch we tried the ‘traditional’ Spanish cuisine of McDonalds and Starbucks (other ACTUAL Spanish restaurants were available). Then, via the stunning Parc de la Cituadella, we marched towards the beach. It was finally time – ¡vamos a la playa!
After a relaxing few hours on the beach we took the metro back for a night we would remember: a pub quiz hosted by Mr Darmanin! Wednesday was an exciting day filled with shopping on Las Ramblas, a tour of the Gothic quarter and so much more! As the sun rose on Thursday morning nerves built for the day: today we would ride on the Telerific de Montjuic. After the first cable car ride, most scaled the remaining mountain whilst others opted for a (slower) ride to the top in a second cable car all the way to Montjuic castle. We took in the breath-taking views over Port Vell and beyond. It was then a short walk to MNAC art gallery where the art enthusiasts amongst us bathed in centuries of artistic talent. After a while we arrived at Poble Espanyol where we enjoyed a sit down meal with our friends and the Mediterranean sun. We took in the exhibitions of Spanish life nestled between typical Spanish architecture and Artisan shops. We hopped on the metro and were given a minute to freshen up before a night on the town spent watching the magic fountains and they really were magic! We ‘dance battled’ against, and with, some locals all with the beautiful fountains and music in the background even though we did get soaked by some of the spray! Before we left for England on Friday we visited Camp Nou - a football fan’s utopia! We went pitch side and also explored the changing rooms and gigantic (but overpriced!) gift shop. We finally made our way back to the hostel via el supermercado where we got snacks for the journey. After what seemed like hours travelling we eventually pulled up at school for everyone to retreat to the comfort of their own beds, where they would remain for days to come…