Posted by: rkurzweil | 05/21/2009

Barcelona Part IV

This is a continuation of my previous post on Barcelona, which can be found here.

May 5, 2009

After leaving Sagrada Familia, we made our way back toward the Gothic Quarter and visited one of the parts of the Museum of the History of Barcelona. This particular part included the Roman ruins found under the Cathedral and other parts of the Gothic Quarter. These date back to as early as the 1st Century. There is an audio tour that explains what you are seeing. With all of the amazing things that we have done in Barcelona, this is definitely one of my favorites. I could have spent all day down there seeing this. The only bad thing was that they did not allow photography. Pity. I wish I could share some of this with others. It is very interesting and anyone that is Roman history buff would definitely like this. (This business of not allowing photographs seems to be common in a lot of the sites that we went to in both Barcelona and Madrid. It really is annoying to not allow it. I cannot think of a single reason for this policy. If you turn off your flash, there is absolutely no possibility of damage to anything, so the only possible reason can be to insure their profits at the gift shops. That is a travesty in my opinion.)

After resting a bit, we decided to go to the casino and see what they had in terms of food. When we got there, we found that they required us to show them our passport in order to be allowed in. If you were from the European Union, you were not required to show a passport. We did not know this in advance and since we do not carry our passports with us when we go out, we were not able to go in. Yet another roadblock. This is really getting annoying.

We ended up eating at a restaurant near the casino and it ended up being one of the better meals during our time in Barcelona. After eating, we went back to the room because we had been out and about almost the whole day without getting much rest. Tomorrow we will be leaving for Madrid.

May 6, 2009

We leave for Madrid today, but our train does not leave until 3:30. That gives us some time to see a little more of the city before we go. Both of us are extremely tired today as neither of us was able to get much sleep last night.

We decided to take a walk along La Rambla and see the stores and such that are there. We took the Metro down to La Rambla and then walked down it. There are so many people here. It is amazing. There are street performers (mostly mime type) all the way up and down La Rambla. Lots of people are stopping to get their pictures taken with one of them. There are also a lot of stalls that sell small pets – birds, ferrets, guinea pigs and some puppies. Another thing in abundance is flower stalls. The flowers are beautiful. There are roses and irises and many other types of flowers as well.

After walking to the end of La Rambla (at the Columbus Monument), we take the Metro back to our hotel and get packed. Time to go to the train station to begin the next chapter in our Spain adventure. The process of checking in and waiting for the train was very simple. In fact, other than putting our luggage through the metal detectors, there was really no process. We had a 3:30 departure. At 3:00, we were able to go to the train and go on board. Our seats were very comfortable. We paid about $100 each for the tickets, and I think it was money well spent. It was so much better than going by plane.

To see some of my photos from Barcelona, click here.

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