Here's how we're going to get in touch with our inner artists in Barcelona.
Are there any Sesame Street fans here? You'll be sure to have a chuckle when you hear that our 2016 travel plans have been brought to you by the letter "S"! No, we promise we didn't plan it this way, but it won't be long until we're off to Sweden, Slovenia, Switzerland, Scotland... and we think some time in Spain is in order as well! And maybe we'll mix up the alphabet a bit and add in a "B" just for Barcelona!
I know I'm not the only one who's been dreaming of some pretty incredible destinations these days. Some of the top travel trends for 2016 see Hawaii, Australia, and Mexico on people's wish lists. Sign me up for all three! And while we're at it.... I have something for you to sign up for as well. Read down to the bottom for some awesome contest info. (And if you win, don't forget to send me a post card!)
Barcelona and Art? It's A Perfect Combination!
It would be mighty tempting to spend all our time outdoors in Barcelona. The architecture is absolutely stunning, the sidewalk cafes are entirely charming, and the Mediterranean climate is ideal for year-round strolling.
But on the rare occasion that we might be tempted to go inside, we're going to head to some of the city's incredible museums. Sometimes slightly overshadowed by the rest of Barcelona's charms, they offer a value oriented traveller tremendous bang for their buck and the chance to know a more intimate side of the city.
Barcelona: Practical Information
Like most Canadian travelers these days, we are really looking to stretch our dollar a lot further. That means we're getting organized, booking well in advance, and bundle some of our reservations together for extra savings. We're huge fans of Expedia for giving us lots of options fo making our travel process go smoothly (and for helping our savings add up!)
One of the easiest way we're augmenting our museum budget (okay, and maybe our wine budget too!) is to shun taxis in favor of more economical and environmentally friendly options. From the main airport, a taxi to the city centre costs about 25-30 Euro - we'll happily ride the Aerobus for about 6 Euros. From the city center, you can easily walk or catch a local bus to your hotel. Expedia has hundreds of value priced options in central Barcelona that can work for value oriented travelers.
If you are visiting several museums and galleries, you will want to invest in a pass to save money (and time in the lines.) A good summery of those available can befound here.
For Spanish Art Lovers
The National Museum of Art of Catalonia has a comprehensive collection of Romanesque art, while the Barcelona Museum of Contemporary Art focuses on post-1945 Catalan and Spanish art. Both museums offer periodic tours and special talks to help new visitors become better acquainted with Spanish art.
For the Ultimate Art Aficionado
Who's your favourite Spanish artist? Chances are, there is a museum or gallery dedicated to their work. The Picasso Museum, the Fundació Joan Miró gallery, and the Fundació Antoni Tàpies gallery hold what are arguably the most significant collections by these artists.
Digging Up Some History
Finally, if your tastes are more nautical in nature, a visit to the Barcelona Maritime Museum is an absolute must. The preserved ships from centuries past are as much pieces of art as their are historical artifacts. Barcelona is such a seafaring city, with such incredible seafood, that it would seem wrong somehow to pass this museum by.
Other top choices for the scientifically and historically included include the Museum of the History of Catalonia. the Barcelona City History Museum, and the Archaeology Museum of Catalonia. If you're travelling with kids, be sure to visit Cosmocaixa - this science museum won the European Museum of the Year Award in 2006.
Discovering new museums and galleries are some of my favorite ways to pass the time when I travel. I love the opportunity to learn more about the places I visit and I've always had great conversations with the docents and volunteers who bring the collections to life. I would love to hear about your last trip to Barcelona and see if any of the places on my list made it onto yours!
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