Rambling down Las Ramblas

Day 13
Barcelona, Spain

After a train, plane and automobile, we arrived here this morning and made our way to the Somnio, a new, centrally located hostel that was opened a couple of months ago by two sisters from the States. We dropped our bags off and walked to Origenes — a delicious nearby restaurant that offers traditional Catalonian cuisine made with all locally-sourced ingredients.

Our next stop was Plaza de Catalunya, home to perhaps Europe’s largest population of pigeons (after Venice). Dodging tour groups and backpackers, we took a moment to take in what is said to be the heart of Barcelona.

Feeling particularly like tourists, we then headed to Las Ramblas, a clogged pedestrian thoroughfare filled with football jersey-wearing Brits, mimes, outdoor pet stores, a Hard Rock Cafe and an overabundance of tourist schwag and Serrano jamon.

Las Ramblas ends at Barcelona’s waterfront, which on a beautiful and sunny afternoon was packed with boaters, sunbathers and yes, more tourists. The marina is a modernist building with a mirrored-roof that reflects the foot traffic below. Can you spot us?

This city feels alive — but not in the Marrakech, Morocco sense. There are tourists nearly everywhere you look. We’ll try our best to walk the line between seeing the sights and not making a dinner reservation at Planet Hollywood. Wish us luck.

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