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15 Great Things I Loved About Living in Barcelona, Spain

Updated on September 24, 2013

Why You Should Live in Barcelona

An Unbelievable, Once-in-a-Lifetime Experience

If you're contemplating living overseas, consider adding Spain to the top of your bucket list as I can easily reel off countless reasons why living in Barcelona in particular, is absolutely fabulous. This cosmopolitan city has all the luxuries of an urban city comparable to Manhattan with its Euro chic sensibilities and an old world charm of its own.

My Husband's Catalan Love Affair Living in Barcelona. It's not often my husband is so easily smitten. He's had other great loves before -- Rome, Paris & Tokyo have previously captured his affection as a Professor of Architecture. When we visited about a year ago, my husband never expected to find a new love.

Living in Barcelona, My Husband Fell in Love

We were both captivated by the city's urban old world charm. Barcelona is arguably one of the finest European cities. Little did we expect to return a year later with a chance to live in Barcelona for 4 months. How about you? Perhaps you've been to Barcelona before on vacation but have made a secret wish to go back to live in Barcelona one day.

Although we had a chance to live for 4 months, you can also easily rent an apartment for a week or a month in fairly safe, chic areas. It will be less expensive than you think and living in an an apartment will give you more of a feel for living like a resident. Barcelona has some of the best markets and local neighborhoods for ingredients.

Can't Decide If You Want to Live In Barcelona or Another City?

Whether you're looking for additional information about living in Barcelona or perhaps have a chance to work/live/study abroad and you have to choose between Barcelona and some other destination, look no further. We've now had a chance to also live in Rome and that was wonderfully fabulous, too. Here are 15 compelling reasons why you should say "si" to living in Barcelona.

Note: Unless otherwise credited, photos were either taken by me or my husband.

Photo Source: Eric & Adrienne Jenkins

Updated 9/20 & 9/24/2013

Why We Chose to Live in Barcelona

Our Story About Why You Should Live In This Gorgeous City

Every year when we decide where we want to travel, it's hard to choose between visiting a new city or a place we've already visited. That's always the great travel debate isn't it?

Often the tiebreaker for us is if someone is residing there and extend an invitation to visit. Every time we've hooked up with friends living abroad, it seems they've already found the little back alley, out of the way gems that only the locals know about.

About a year ago, a colleague of Eric's invited us to Barcelona and she lent us her apartment in the historic Gothic Quarter while she was out of town on a class field trip. Barcelona was a new destination for the both of us.

It has been quite some time since my husband had an architectural crush. It was love at first sight. Instantly infatuated, we both were taken in by Barcelona's charm, the closest comparison is Manhattan in a cosmopolitan, modern, stylish European kind of way.

Most of our travels have only been a week, 10 days or two weeks tops. So when this same colleague invited my husband to come to Barcelona to teach next Spring, it was a no brainer. This meant my husband's plane fare and a spacious apartment would all be paid in addition to his regular monthly salary teaching at the university. It took little persuasion for us to say "si" for him to teach and live in Barcelona for 4 months.

#1 - Fabulous Modern Architecture

Architectural Greatness Echoing Nature.

For my husband, a Professor of Architecture, Barcelona is all about the architecture. Brilliant, awe-inspiring Gothic cathedrals juxtaposed with magnificent contemporary buildings. But beyond Gaudi there's the elegant stark simplicity of Mies Van Der Roe's Barcelona Pavilion, the playful fun of Frank Gehry's fish and French architect Jean Nouvel's controversial colorful contribution to Barcelona's skyline.

Much like Manhattan, Barcelona's historic center is a great walk. And each of it's neighborhoods have a unique vibe. But throughout there's a lot of historic architecture preserved right alongside some impressive Modern architecture. That doesn't even count the colorful graffiti art that's splashed on many of the security doors that are displayed at lunch and evenings when shops are closed. So much to see everywhere you turn.

Image: Gaudian Spiral by Erik

Great Architecture Everywhere

Great Architecture Everywhere
Great Architecture Everywhere

#2 - It's All About the Food

Eat, Drink, Sleep

I'm not exactly a diehard foodie or a great cook, but I do love to eat. So Barcelona for me, is all about the food. Fabulous restaurants everywhere. You gotta love a city that sleeps late, shuts down their businesses & stores to take a two hour lunch everyday.

With the Meditteranean sea at its doorstep, Barcelona boasts some of the freshest seafood, delicious seafood stews & soups, tapas & menu del dia or menu of the day. Forget the architecture. If you did nothing in Barcelona but eat, you would leave happy, contented and fulfilled -- maybe 50 pounds heavier but 50 pounds happier.

Enjoying Pintxos in Barcelona - At Sagardi

Our Favorite Pintxo Bar in Barcelona - Sagardi

When you first go to Sagardi, if it's busy, no worries. Just order a drink and ask the bartender for a plate. Then weaving in between those standing at the bar, just dive in and reach in for what you want then get back out. If you're with a date, here's a great stand-up strategy. Have one person hold the drinks while the other person goes and gets the food. Then you just take turns drinking and eating. It's worth it.

Remember, it's busy for a reason -- because it's soooo good. That's always one of our rules when traveling. Don't give up so easily when a place is busy. You may not be back for a while. You're better to eat standing up without a space at the bar than to have bar space or a table at a not so very good pintxo bar. The turnover is best at busy times so you're always getting a fresh selection. Plus most people don't stay very long so spaces always keep opening up to stand at the bar.

Enjoy!

We call it tapas but more specifically, these little tidbits of food are called pintxos. This is one of our favorite places to catch a bite on the run that's located in the Gothic Quarter. There are at least two locations we've been to and they're both good.

The Ultimate Road Trip Across Spain - DVD: On the Road Again | Mario Batali & Gwenyth Paltrow

On Gwyneth Paltrow's website, Goop, she lists some of her favorite places to eat and stay while in Barcelona. Click here.

Spain... On The Road Again
Spain... On The Road Again

If you haven't seen the show yet, try to catch it on PBS whenever they re-air it or get the DVD. Gwenyth and Mario have a relaxed vibe and Batali has a wonderful exhuberance for food. Gwenyth's perfect Spanish is a suprise. The show's official website has recipes, a show guide and video clips here. If you had to choose only one as a gift, I'd recommend the DVD over the recipe book.

 

Spain...A Culinary Road Trip - The Book: Mario & Gwenyth's Bucket List Travel Adventure

Spain...A Culinary Road Trip
Spain...A Culinary Road Trip

Chef Mario Batali was on Oprah with Gwenyth Paltrow to talk about their adventures in Spain filming the PBS show "On the Road Again." Oprah featured Spanish recipes by Chef Mario Batali including Asparagus Alla Plancha, Flamenquines, Torrijas and Paella. Mario's Spanish recipes from the Oprah show are available here.

 

The Freshest Seafood

The Freshest Seafood
The Freshest Seafood

#3 - Pastry Shops Galore

Bakeries by the Block

Atkins advocates, check your diet at the airport. Flaky pastries, cream puffs, palmiers, croissants, thin crispy wafers coated in honey and sprinkled with pine nuts, cake with layers of light whipped cream icing all beckon. Despite a 4 story walk up and 81 stairs to negotiate every day, I still packed on extra junk in the trunk. Let's just say J Lo looks like Kate Moss in comparison. But so worth every crumb. When in Spain...

Carbs on Every Corner

Carbs on Every Corner
Carbs on Every Corner

#4 - Chocolate Lover's Delight

Charming Old World Confectionery Shops

Glass cases full of delectable chocolate bon-bons. Another indulgence for chocoholics -- xurros con chocolat, a decadent cup of hot chocolate as thick as pudding. Not to be missed, the one hundred year old award-winning pastry shop created by Antoni Escriba, who has been described as the "Mozart of Chocolate".

Escriba Barcelona

Escriba Barcelona
Escriba Barcelona

#5 - The Perfect Cup of Coffee

Mmmmm, Aaaaaaah

I'm not normally a coffee drinker, but there's something perfect about cafe con leche or coffee halved with steam milk. It's mellow, never bitter. You'll sometimes be asked caliente? Do you want the milk warmed? Because the people of Barcelona have a sweet tooth, I appreciate that their sugar packets are generous. Finding artificial sweetener like sweet 'n low is rare so pack your own. Try Mistral in Raval.

Cafe Con Leche

Cafe Con Leche
Cafe Con Leche

#6 - Spanish Wine & Cavas

Rival French Wine & Champagne

Spanish ruedas & riojas are being touted in the New York Times Food section. Some of the best of what Spain has to offer is not always exported so what better way to enjoy Spanish wine than living in Barcelona. Plus the wine is inexpensive. You can enjoy a great bottle for $5-$10.

Cava or sparkling wine, Spain's answer to champagne is readily available. Check it out -- cava in convenient individual bottles so you can celebrate anytime. Plus look for sangria in any grocery store in ready-to-go juice boxes.

Plus you gotta love a country where most of the time it's cheaper to enjoy a glass of wine or beer than it is to buy a can of coke or a bottle of water.

Barcelona Cava Tasting

Barcelona Cava Tasting
Barcelona Cava Tasting

#7 - Buying Your Food at the Market

Live Like a Local

One of the joys of living in a city like Barcelona for a few months is that you get into the rhythm of living like a resident. You search out the best place to buy bread, an inexpensive place to buy flowers, determine who has decent vegetables and fruit. I found a butcher who could understand my butchered Spanish enough to recommend a cheese or jamon.

Without a car, I schlepped groceries on foot and shopped the European way, making a daily grocery run with multiple stops. I'd linger at one of the big markets like the world renown Boqueria or newer Mercat Santa Caterina. Once a week, the cheese market filled the little square in front of the church just down from us in our neighbourhood with the most amazing goat cheese. Barcelona is a foodie's delight.

My Butcher at Mercat de Santa Catarina

My Butcher at Mercat de Santa Catarina
My Butcher at Mercat de Santa Catarina

#8 - Shopping

January and February the shopping deals are plentiful as retailers make way for Spring and Summer fashions. Fashionistas mix it up with young designers and department store finds. There's also plenty of interesting shopping boutiques to be found in different neighbourhoods with plenty of interesting and unique products.

Interesting Boutique Specialty Shops

Interesting Boutique Specialty Shops
Interesting Boutique Specialty Shops

#9 - Vibrant Arts & Culture Scene

Plenty of Nightclubs & Live Music

Sardana dancing can be seen on weekends in front of the Cathedral and City Hall. Although Flamenco dancing is native to the Andalusia region of Spain, Barcelona has a historic inexpensive tablao that has been open since the 1960s.

Flamenco Music & Dance at Tarantos

Flamenco Music & Dance at Tarantos
Flamenco Music & Dance at Tarantos

#10 - World Class Museums & Art Galleries

Thriving Local Art Scene

The Picasso Museum

Miro Foundation

Museum of Contemporary Art of Barcelona

Centre of Contemporary Culture of Barcelona

Gaudi Museum

Palau de la Musica Catalana

Chocolate Museum

One of the nicest things about living in Barcelona is the chance to walk out and experience the city at different times of the day. The streetscape perpetually changes. For example, one day I chanced upon the fun, amazing pop art of Barcelona artist Popi Jabiansky -- animals looking serious as if they are sitting for a formal medieval portraiture.

Image Source: Popi Jabiansky

#11 - Street Art

Beyond Graffitti

Shops open and close at random times mid-day, roughly re-opening between 3-7 pm after the mid-day lunch. If you stroll the streets when the stores are closed at this time or in the morning, you'll see one of the best free art galleries in Barcelona. Store street shutters are colorfully painted.

Photography tip. The evening is also a great time for viewing this street art. As long as you mind your camera and valuables as well as stay aware of your surroundings, it's ideal to take pictures. My sister-in-law discovered the aluminium shutters reflect the flash perfectly and somehow the colors show up nicely when it's dark.

Art is Everywhere

Art is Everywhere
Art is Everywhere

#12 - Live Like A Local

Just Walking Around

If you ever run out of museums to visit or things to do, the advantage of living in Barcelona is that you don't have to rush around to have fun. You can just step out and follow the winding streets and there are always interesting things to discover.

For the true experience of living like a local, even if it's only for a week, you can secure a furnished apartment for rent. Our apartment didn't have an oven but it did have a stove. It's usually cheaper than a hotel. A littly pricey, but very professional and reliable, we used Friendly Rentals.

You'll see listings as well as blackout dates. Be sure to study these dates even if you don't book with Friendly Rentals because there are certain dates you want to avoid visiting Barcelona. There's a telecommunications confererence and a fashion week where accommodations are virtually sold-out and double the price at those times.

Source: Friendly Rentals

Just Walking Around Barcelona is Fun

Just Walking Around Barcelona is Fun
Just Walking Around Barcelona is Fun

#13 - Celebrations

The people of Barcelona love a party and every neighborhood seems to have their own celebration. Often times without even trying you can stumble upon some event or another. Tres Tombs, St. Eulalia, Santa Semana and St. Jordi's day are just some of the festivals we enjoyed.

If there is only one festival that should not be missed, if you're a book lover or just a lover, St. Jordi's day in April is unforgettable. It is the Catalan equivalent of St. Valentine's Day and is unreal as rose sellers and book sellers set up tables across the city.

Tres Tombs Festival

Tres Tombs Festival
Tres Tombs Festival

#14 - Proximity to Major Airports

Lots of Low Cost Airlines

Ryan Air

Vueling

Click Air

Easy Jet

Barcelona is home to many low cost airlines which makes it ideal for taking weekend jaunts to other European destinations. I was able to visit a friend who is studying jewellery making in Florence. Ryan Air is actually not based in Barcelona, it's about an hour long bus ride away. But Ryan Air occasionally has these ridiculous low fare sales, as low as $1 seats where you just pay the taxes and fees, no strings attached as they just want to fill the plane rather than have it fly empty.

Flew Ryan Air to Florence to Visit My Friend Geri

Flew Ryan Air to Florence to Visit My Friend Geri
Flew Ryan Air to Florence to Visit My Friend Geri

#15 - The Weather is Perfect Year Round

Most people think of escaping to tropical locations like Hawaii or Mexico in the winter. Being in the Mediterranean, Barcelona is fairly temperate. We were there from January to April and I was able to shed my winter coat by February. For the most part I just wore a suit jacket and scarf.

It never snowed and rain was pretty rare. Most of the time it was warm enough that residents could leave their tropical houseplants outside on their balcony. Geraniums were in full bloom in March whereas these might not be available until at least a month or so later in most parts of the States.

Barcelona Allows You To Escape Winter

Barcelona Allows You To Escape Winter
Barcelona Allows You To Escape Winter

Where to Stay in Barcelona

My Favorite Area to Stay

is the Gothic Quarter

What's It Like To Live In Barcelona For a Month or Longer?

In One Word -- Simply Awesome

Stay For a Week, a Month or Longer. Try a Furnished Apartment Rental. One of the best values in Barcelona is to stay in an extended stay apartment rental. While you can find apartments to rent for a week or a month on Craiglist, be careful about bait and switch. We've reserved lovely apartments based on their photos and location only to have the reservations changed once we've arrived when you're too jet lagged and weary to make other arrangements.

But who do you trust? I've used Friendly Rentals numerous times for both my husband and I, as well as to rent apartments for students and colleagues. They have apartments that cater to families and large groups. Their apartments are usually clean and outfitted with modern conveniences. Think Ikea type furniture. Most contain kitchens so you can save on eating out by having meals in.

Friendly Rentals Apartments in BarcelonaRESERVE NOW

The last time I visited a couple of years ago, the only drawback is that depending on the apartment, you may have to pick up your key from their office before you get access the apartment and depending on your arrival time, that can mean the inconvenience of having to schlep your luggage around town. The other oddity, and this seems to be more common in Europe, is that you're expected to pay the balance of your stay in cash.

However, from what I remember, you could also request to pay the credit card fee which was an added percentage to charge your apartment rental. I think it was 1-3%. So on a $1,000 apartment rental, that was only $10-$30 more which was much more safe and secure than schlepping that amount of cash around a foreign city. Plus there's usually a daily limit on the amount of cash you can take out from the bank everyday, so you would have to plan your daily withdrawals or have multiple bank accounts, not to mention if your bank charges you to withdraw funds overseas. Also try to use a credit card that does not charge foreign transaction fees.

What Neighborhood Should You Live? - Photo Source: Adrienne Jenkins

Barcelona Plaza
Barcelona Plaza

If you've made the decision you're going to do it, now you have the wonderful dilemma of figuring out where you want to live in the city. It's a good idea to visit your potential neighborhood before you commit to even a short term lease from abroad. Visit the area during the day and night to make sure you feel safe.

You'll also want to see how close the area is to the things you want to do in the city whether it be in the historical center, near the beach or shopping. Are you comfortable with living outside of the main part of the city where the rents are a little more expensive if it's easily accessible by train, tram, bus or bike?

I love the tight enclosed city streets and dense amount of shops and things to see and do in the historic Gothic quarter. But seem people prefer the wide open spaces of Eixample. Do a little research ahead of time by also checking out locations on Google maps and comparing relative distances to similar streets in your hometown.

Where Do You Want to Live In Europe? - If the Magic Squidoo Fairy Came Along & Granted You One Wish

Where Would You Choose?

See results

Not convinced yet? Overall, Barcelona is urban, hip, chic -- oh, yah there's also football/soccer and the beach. What more could you want? Barcelona is a great place to visit and an even better place to live.

Muy Bueno! Have a fantastico time. What do you think of living in Barcelona? Feel free to share any of your travel tips, suggestions or don't hesitate to drop me a line if you have questions.

P.S. October 5, 2010

If you're interested in reading more about what it's like to live overseas, there's a free Kindle book from Amazon.com written by novelist R.S. Gompertz, author of "No Roads Lead to Rome." It's a collection of articles about some of the issues and situations you come across when living away from home. Click here for The Expat's Pajamas: Barcelona. You don't even need a Kindle, you can download the Kindle for PC or Mac application to read on your computer.

I just woke up. It's 5 am in Washington, DC and I just discovered on my dashboard that I won lens of the day. Thanks for whoever nominated me. It's my first one since joining Squidoo in 2008 where I began writing from my sabbatical in Barcelona. This is very serendipitous because I happen to be leaving shortly on a field trip with my husband and his architecture students to Barcelona & Rome. In 2011 -- we are fortunate enough to get to live in Rome for a semester. Ciao for now!

Photo Source: All photos by Adrienne Jenkins unless otherwise credited.

Have You Lived In Barcelona? Returning? - Already Booked Your Ticket? Just Thinking About It? Undecided?

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    • profile image

      Hola Barcelona 10 months ago from Barcelona

      I have been living in Barcelona for 12 years and one of my favorite places is La Boqueria market. It is located right on the Ramblas next to the famous Liceu Theater (main theater of Barcelona) and just 300 meters from Plaza Catalunya which is the nueralgic center of Barcelona. Despite having become a tourist, it still maintains that neighborhood market spirit, and it does not fail to surprise me with the color, the smells and flavors of this traditional market. If you come to Barcelona I recommend you do not forget to visit it.

    • Max Globe profile image

      Max Globe 3 years ago

      Barcelona is one of my favourite cities

    • Stephanie36 profile image

      Stephanie 4 years ago from Canada

      Tons of great info here! I'll have to remember it if I'm ever lucky enough to go!

    • profile image

      ginavenice 4 years ago

      We have been living in Italy for 10 years - 4 in Rome, the last 6 in Venice. We were planning on returning to Rome for my daughter's high school years, but after she begged me to go to an American school instead of continuing in the Italian system for high school, we decided to move to Barcelona and send her to the American school there. I lived in Barcelona for a year when I was newly married and loved it. But my heart was left in Rome and now I am starting to second-guess my decision to move to Barcelona. Help! I know Barcelona is better for kids (I have 3 - ages 14,12,and 5) because of all the amazing outdoor activities, beaches, etc., but my love of history,food, and the romantic side of Rome has me longing to return. Any insight about families in Barcelona would be appreciated!!

    • Aibrean82 profile image

      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      I so want to go to Barcelona!

    • intothesunset profile image

      intothesunset 4 years ago

      I just spent a day in Barcelona to pick up a cruise that departed from there. I had a chance to see 3 things: Sagrada Familia, Casa Mila and the site of the Olympic games. That was a lot in one day but I'm hooked.

    • profile image

      StrongMay 4 years ago

      I'll be visiting Barcelona in just under two months! Yay, I am so excited.

    • Mamabyrd profile image

      Mamabyrd 4 years ago

      I lived in Europe for three years but did not get the chance to travel to Spain. I regret it so much. I really would love to visit Barcelona!!

    • katiecolette profile image

      katiecolette 4 years ago

      I hope to visit this summer :) Great job on this lens!

    • worldwidesouven profile image

      worldwidesouven 4 years ago

      I think Barcelona has been always a modern city, in all times. If I nedd to move somewhere in Europe I would prefer Spain and Barcelona. Great choice for you! Thanks for sharing.

    • MikeRobbers LM profile image

      MikeRobbers LM 4 years ago

      Great lens! Living in Barcelona is one of the best things that could happen to one!

    • takkhisa profile image

      Takkhis 4 years ago

      It is a beautiful city :)

    • peterb6001 profile image

      Peter Badham 4 years ago from England

      I love Barcelona and this fantastic page has just made me want to visit again. Oh well, maybe next month.

    • rooshoo profile image

      rooshoo 4 years ago

      This is a really compelling lens. My friend lived in Barcelona for a couple of years while working on his dissertation. He absolutely fell in love with the place.

    • chrissmith-uk profile image

      chrissmith-uk 4 years ago

      Adrienne - thankyou for this wonderful Lens. Barcelona is on my goto list for 2013 or 2014, and I loved all of your personal photos. I have saved this lens to come back to when I am preparing for our trip. please can you send me one of those delicious Raspberry / Chocolate Escribas? :-)

    • Adrienne Jenkins profile image
      Author

      Adrienne Jenkins 5 years ago

      @santadelcobre: When I was trying to learn how to do sardana dancing, I found the Catalans to be warm and welcoming, inviting me to join their circles. You don't necessarily need to know Catalan to enjoy Barcelona. However, the locals will be most impressed if you try. I didn't speak any Spanish before I went to Barcelona but over time learned enough to buy food and order in restaurants. You can get by without ever speaking Spanish or Catalan as most people are bilingual or even multilingual but like any country, it certainly helps to at least learn, please and thank-you. It's a great cosmopolitan city to enjoy for a couple days, a week vacation or a longer stay.

    • profile image

      santadelcobre 5 years ago

      I loved this lens. I just wonder, in your top 15 list you never mention the locals. Do they embrace you? Do they like foreigners? What about catalan? Do you have to speak it or can you have a nice life speaking English? Thank you Adrienne.

    • IWS LM profile image

      IWS LM 5 years ago

      We visited Barcelona this year for the first time, and really loved the city. Thank you for the informative and fun lens.

    • RestlessKnights profile image

      RestlessKnights 5 years ago

      I've spent a few summers in Spain, and really liked it. I still have Barcelona to visit though.

    • Rachel214 profile image

      Rachel214 5 years ago from Haifa

      Thank you so much for this lens. I am making my first trip to Barcelona in October and am very excited.

    • Diva2Mom profile image

      Diva2Mom 5 years ago

      You just made me beg my own husband to take me there now, haha! Great lens! Love Spain. My great grandmother was from Barcelona, Spain. Beautiful place! God bless.

    • ievajansone20 profile image

      ievajansone20 5 years ago

      Spain is a great place to live and to go and visit!

    • profile image

      sammiess 5 years ago

      It's a great city and I feel good every time when I visit it.

    • poldepc lm profile image

      poldepc lm 5 years ago

      great lens

    • LaurisB LM profile image

      LaurisB LM 5 years ago

      I love Barcelona - and everything else Spain! My favorite city, though, remains Madrid. And outside of the big cities, Arcos de la Frontera has my heart!

    • MJsConsignments profile image

      Michelle 5 years ago from Central Ohio, USA

      I love the lens! I've wondered about Barcelona ever since the Olympics were there. I'll just have to visit someday!

    • profile image

      RuralFloridaLiving 5 years ago

      Lucky girl! We've always hoped to retire to Spain. My husband's job has taken him all over the world. His heart is still in Spain. Great lens. Thanks for sharing.

    • profile image

      Shadrosky 5 years ago

      Fascinating lens! I've always heard Barcelona was nice, but never with such detail!

    • TheMummyNextDoor profile image

      TheMummyNextDoor 5 years ago

      Can I marry your husband? Seriously, I love that city. I am going to do my damndest to buy a flat out there one day. Everything I love in one place. x

    • profile image

      rodjoe2001 5 years ago

      My goodness, what a wonderful post, but in my humble opinion, one of the best assets of Barcelona has been left out...I am talking about its people. How do I know? Well, It is my home town!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      @Parleo: Did you move to Barcelona from the U.S.?

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      @anonymous: I actually came back from Spain on the date you posted this. January 26, 2012. If you ever have the chance to visit Spain, I strongly recommend you do soon. Especially in the spring and summer, it is beautiful out there in Barcelona or Madrid. Plus, if you would like to also travel to Paris like I did, you can take Ryanair and it's inexpensive to fly to Paris from Barcelona. I will go back to Spain hopefully next year.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      I am going to Barcelona for the first time this Summer, and now I am even more excited!

    • Richardryder profile image

      Risteard O'Marcahain 5 years ago from Wales

      Barcelona sounds cool

    • TravelDiaries profile image

      TravelDiaries 5 years ago

      Great lens...always good to get info from locals. There is no other way to get the truth.

      Happy Travels . I love Barcelona as well.

    • profile image

      QuarterLifeDaily 5 years ago

      Awesome article. I'll be moving to either Madrid or Barcelona later this year, and this got me even more excited.

    • navalava lm profile image

      navalava lm 5 years ago

      I visited Barcelona once. I loved it. The architecture is the best on in Europe. Gaudi was one of the kind. I love his buidings.

      If I had to choose between sightseeing in Barcelona, I would choose Guell park!

      Thank you for sharing this lens with us!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      I dream of going to Spain, thanks for the inspiration

    • DonD LM profile image

      DonD LM 5 years ago

      These are great things why people love to live in Spain and this is I think for me a valid factor people choose to live there.

    • jacinto888 profile image

      jacinto888 5 years ago

      Very Nice Lens!

    • Holiday Villa Se profile image

      Holiday Villa Se 5 years ago

      Excellent lens, very informative!!

    • profile image

      Lindrus 6 years ago

      What a nice and well-written lens! You made Barcelona seem so appealing. Thanks for sharing!

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      would have been informative to talk a bit about the catalan issue. I am not quite sure people reding this will understand that most of us, Catalans, do not feel spanish. We have our own language and culture, and we do not have much in common with southern Spain.

    • Diana Wenzel profile image

      Renaissance Woman 6 years ago from Colorado

      I wasn't a Squid yet when you achieved this LOTD so I'll offer my congrats now. :-) I can really see myself traveling to Spain. I haven't been as smart as an academic as you and your hubby seem to be. I really should be looking at teaching abroad opportunities. Thanks for the inspiration!

    • Barcelona Ok Ap profile image

      Barcelona Ok Ap 6 years ago

      I totally agree with you!

      Barcelona is a wonderful place to live in. It has everything you need and it's a city where you never get bored.

      I can feel that you really like Barcelona as much as I do!

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      I just got back from Barcelona today. My husband and I were there for a week. We rented an apartment from Friendly Rentals and loved our temporary pad in the heart of the city. All your points are the things we loved about Barca. We came back to the UK leaving a trail of tears because we had to come home. :)

    • profile image

      miaponzo 6 years ago

      Thanks for this! My son went to Barcelona to study last year (he ended up not studying and not working and starting up a band and playing a few gigs instead).. now he's back in Kuwait! :)

    • profile image

      JimH 7 years ago

      Just added Barcelona to my bucket list, wonderful lens packed with great info for travellers, thanks for all your research!

    • lasertek lm profile image

      lasertek lm 7 years ago

      I have heard so many wonderful things about Barcelona. It is good to know more much about it. Thanks for this encouraging lens.

    • DDWright profile image

      DDWright 7 years ago

      wonderful lens--I hope someday to be able to see Gaudi's work somewhere other than in books...think i could probably handle the food too:)

    • SidneyMorgan LM profile image

      SidneyMorgan LM 7 years ago

      This is perfect place to live. Thanks for a good virtual tour of the city :)

    • Asinka profile image

      Asinka Fields 7 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      Absolutely fabulous coverage of Barcelona!

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      themilton 7 years ago

      I first moved to Barcelona in the 1970s just after Franco died and Don Carlos had ascended the throne. I was and still am a strong activist. Citizens had not heard from loved ones in decades and did not know if they were alive or dead (some were just arrested while going out to buy some milk and nobody had ever heard of them again). I enjoyed the passion of the people as we struck out together to close areas down until the government would set up a unit to answer the questions about missing loved ones. Although there had been some dangerous situations for me, overall I have to say I exalt emotionally thinking about that romantic romantic city. New made friends celebrated with me with those glasses unique to the area that Hemingway enjoyed( the glasses squirt the wine into your mouth when tilted at a distance from your open mouth)....and walking down the long narrow streets as the sky began to lighten overhead to the piercing sounds of roosters crowing. The clip clop sounds of donkey's shoed feet on the stoney streets brought tired smiles to our faces.We were so aware through the sounds and smells of another day with new life had just begun.

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      JTisMe 7 years ago

      This is so coincidental that this lens is on LotD. My girlfriend is always saying how she wants to live in Barcelona and I could never figure out why, but after reading this lens I am opening up to the idea a lot more.

    • Classic LM profile image

      Classic LM 7 years ago

      Hello - A very exuberant lens, great information! I would love to visit Barcelona one day. :o) Come visit my lens about Budapest, Hungary and leave behind a note if you like! :o)

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      anonymous 7 years ago

      Such a beautiful place! The pastries and cooking look amazing. Hope the students enjoy Barcelona & Rome:)

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      heavenlysoaps 7 years ago

      The photographs are brilliant. The cakes would tempt me over there lol. The soaps look lovely. Great Lens.

    • Rita-K profile image

      Rita-K 7 years ago

      I have always dreamed of going to Spain to see Gaudi's work! Thank you for such a wonderful mini-trip! And a big Congratulations!

    • blue22d profile image

      blue22d 7 years ago

      Looks like a wonderful place to visit. I haven't been to Europe at all so I have many places I would like to see. ***** for your lens.

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      jullian88 7 years ago

      Just made a short trip to Barcelona while reading this post....!!

    • divacratus 2 profile image

      divacratus 2 7 years ago

      I love the way you've written your entire experience and your reasons for falling in love with Barcelona! It makes me feel like I was just right there experiencing all these amazing memories with you. You write really well. Keep it up!

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      Versatigon 7 years ago

      My first reason is because there you can find the most versatile soccer club in the world, Barcelone FC! :D

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      anonymous 7 years ago

      I have only ever flown to Barcelona - but I wish I had had time to spend time there - congratulations on getting LOTD :)

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      sea_sparrow 7 years ago

      Live in valencia is better, closer to the sea. Just a thought. Of course it's nice to live in barca, but valencia is better.

    • Charlino99 profile image

      Tonie Cook 7 years ago from USA

      This is beautiful and inspiring.

    • vitar profile image

      vitar 7 years ago

      Great lens! Thanks for all the info!

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      RinchenChodron 7 years ago

      The pastries look to die for! Yum I'm sold I'm coming! Congrats on LOTD!

    • SylvianeNuccio1 profile image

      SylvianeNuccio1 7 years ago

      Being from France, I have been to Spain a few times and of course Barcelona. Beautiful city.

    • Tobbie LM profile image

      Tobbie LM 7 years ago

      Makes me want to go... pronto. Great lens!

    • Dianne Loomos profile image

      Dianne Loomos 7 years ago

      Barcelona sounds wonderful! Congrats on LOTD!

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      erickam 7 years ago

      took the who family there this summer, when we spent 6 weeks overseas as part of my job as Transatlantic Commuter. They just fell in love with the city

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      iienjoy 7 years ago

      I think I'll add this one to my bucket list, thanks for a great lens! =D

    • ajsphotographic1 profile image

      ajsphotographic1 7 years ago

      Great lens! Very well written congrats on LOTD.

    • supercibor lm profile image

      supercibor lm 7 years ago

      This is a sensational lens. I am packing to go to Barcelona right now!

    • spritequeen lm profile image

      spritequeen lm 7 years ago

      Sign me up! I'm READY TO FLY!

    • mariaamoroso profile image

      irenemaria 7 years ago from Sweden

      Have never lived in or visited Barcelona. But now I am on my way! Thank you for a lovely lens! Congrats to the Lotd

    • JoyfulPamela2 profile image

      JoyfulPamela2 7 years ago from Pennsylvania, USA

      Barcelona sounds like a beautiful place to be! Thanks for sharing it. Congratulations on LOTD!

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      stepho123 7 years ago

      Stunning lens! Well done on LOTD!

    • LouisaDembul profile image

      LouisaDembul 7 years ago

      I have been in love with Rome for almost three decades now, but next summer I think I will have to go and visit Barcelona! Fantastic lens!

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      anonymous 7 years ago

      I am going to enjoy reading this - I have spanish chillies and stuffed olives with anchovies, the chillies are amazing - not brave enough to try the olives yet..but I will ! If they are anything like the Agean Sadeans in chilly oil - then I am in for a treat - very surprised at the quality. A world best for certain. Love to visit Spain, last place that uses Latin language I hear.

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      emilpa97 7 years ago

      maybe ill go there next summer

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      letevic 7 years ago

      Really enjoyed this lens. Congrats on the feature!

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      anonymous 7 years ago

      Congratulations on lens of the day! ~ This is very nice, makes me want to go see Barcelona. What a beautiful and festive place.

    • kimbesa2 profile image

      kimbesa 7 years ago from USA

      Thanks for writing this lens. Lots of inspiration for those of us who want to travel, and potentially live abroad. Exploring new cultures is fun!

    • MacPharlain profile image

      MacPharlain 7 years ago

      I haven't been to Barcelona yet but it's on my list. I like how you designed the lens to list out the reasons to visit Barcelona. Good mix of cool photos and on topic links to more info. Congrats on LOTD!

    • rachsue lm profile image

      rachsue lm 7 years ago

      Congrats on LOTD, well deserved. Barcelona must be indeed a wonderful place to visit. Maybe I will consider it one day, especially with all the information you have provided. Again Congrats!!

    • ajgodinho profile image

      Anthony Godinho 7 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Congrats on LotD...well done and written! I would love to visit Spain someday and may be live in Barcelona. Looks like they have good weather all year round :)

    • EdenT profile image

      EdenT 7 years ago

      you've convinced me. I want to eat my way through Barcelona! great lens! congrats.

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      anonymous 7 years ago

      I have never had the pleasure of going to Europe, I am sure I would enjoy traveling there.

    • justholidays profile image

      justholidays 7 years ago

      LOL. Often crossed Barcelona to visit my family who lives for a part in Terrasa and the other part in Salou and Reus. Terrasa is only 20 km from Barcelona but I've never really stopped to have a walk in the streets. I'd like though... I'm in love with Gaudi's beauties!

      As for the European place I'd like to live: my own country, my dear, Belgium even while it's about to get split into several different countries. It's the place I was born, it surely is the place I'll die, I'm not a traveller ;)

      Excellent lens and congratulations with your LOTD!

    • OliveHouse profile image

      OliveHouse 7 years ago

      Great photography - makes me want to get on a plane!

    • jupiter justice profile image

      Asher Socrates 7 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      Really enjoy this lens and will visit often! thanks keep up the good work.

    • rgasperson lm profile image

      Robert T Gasperson 7 years ago from South Carolina

      beautiful lens. Not sure I would want to move there, but I would definitely visit. Thank you for the Great List. Congrats on the LOTD.

    • rgasperson lm profile image

      Robert T Gasperson 7 years ago from South Carolina

      beautiful lens. Not sure I would want to move there, but I would definitely visit. Thank you for the Great List. Congrats on the LOTD.

    • JonitasKalimpo profile image

      JonitasKalimpo 7 years ago

      I lived for three years in Spain, and i loved it. Barcelona it's a superb city!

    • mbgphoto profile image

      Mary Beth Granger 7 years ago from O'Fallon, Missouri, USA

      Beautiful lens. We had a brief visit to Barcelona on a cruise...just enough to want us to see more!

    • junecampbell profile image

      June Campbell 7 years ago from North Vancouver, BC, Canada

      Wonderful lens. I'd love to visit Barcelona. As for living there, well.... I live in Vancouver and I'm a big fan. :-)

    • scrapperkare profile image

      scrapperkare 7 years ago

      Ah, you can never have too many photos! Great job with this lens . . . Hubby and I hope to cruise the Mediterranean on Carnival's newest ship & Barcelona is the jumping off point!

    • Heather426 profile image

      Heather Burns 7 years ago from Wexford, Ireland

      Great job on this lens about Barcelona. I want to live there now.

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      rickp 7 years ago

      Love the lens! My only addition would be that you don't mention the street crime. I have always been told (locals and friends that have been there) that the pickpockets etc in Barcelona are the worst in Europe.