Spain Part 3: Where to Stay and What to Eat

Where to Stay

Choosing a place to stay online, in a place you have never been can be scary.  It's so important to read multiple reviews and get referrals from friends.   Christina did a lot of research and it definitely paid off!

We found Hotel Hostemplo on Travelocity.  It was a total deal for under $100 per night, and only 270 yards from Gaudi's La Sagrada Familia!

These apartment style rooms have kitchens with dishwashers, washer/dryers and eating areas, which was really convenient!

When booking, most hotels require the first night as a deposit through paypal, and you have to let them know what time you will arrive so they can have someone stationed at the desk to greet you.

We booked the second place through airbnb in barcelonetta.  It was a simple place in a great location with awesome value

What to Eat

In Spain people eat a lot later than in the rest of the world.  Lunch time at a typical Barcelona restaurant starts at around 2 or 3pm and supper time is after 9pm.  The cafes and bars open from  7:30am- 2am.  If you love to get a snack after a night of nightlife, it can be difficult to get something to eat after 4 am unless you find one of the bars that the taxi drivers use.  When it comes to tipping, it is not expected at most restaurants, but if you do decide to tip, 5% is more than enough.  To find the best deals on restaurants near you, download the Restalo Restaurants App.

Seafood Paella from El Glop, Photo by Christina Wedge

Seafood Paella from El Glop, Photo by Christina Wedge

There are a few dishes that you must try while in Spain!  I highly recommend the Seafood Paella from El Glop.  

El Glop, Photo by Christina Wedge

El Glop, Photo by Christina Wedge

Located in the Gracia neighborhood, in the midst of the nightlife, El Glop is the perfect place to enjoy dinner with the best Sangria in Spain before hitting all the hot spots.  

Cafe Alfonso Restaurante, Photo by Christina Wedge

Cafe Alfonso Restaurante, Photo by Christina Wedge

Casa Alfonso Restaurante:  This cute little place is delicious!  It requires a reservation, and I recommend getting the tomato bread (a Catalan tradition), the alfonso bomb and the breaded, fried olives.  

Breaded Fried Olives, Photo by Christina Wedge

Breaded Fried Olives, Photo by Christina Wedge

La Boqueria, located in the middle of Las Ramblas is also a fun place to walk around and eat.  

You can shop for snacks, as well as stop to grab a bite to eat at the many different restaurants and food stands.

Petit Tapas, Photo by Christina Wedge

Petit Tapas, Photo by Christina Wedge

Petit Tapas:  This place is so good, and what a fun atmosphere, located right inside La Boqueria seafood area.  

Petit Tapas, Photo by Christina Wedge

Petit Tapas, Photo by Christina Wedge

We feasted on fresh Calamari and mussels.  There was a little bit of a wait, but totally worth it!

Chiringuito Mari Carmen, Photo by Christina Wedge

Chiringuito Mari Carmen, Photo by Christina Wedge

Chiringuito MariCarmen:  Beach Bar at Plate de la Nova Mar Bella, this place was a blast.  Great beach cocktails and a beautiful view of the beach, what more can you ask for?

Mirablau:  This great restaurant located at the bottom of Tibidabo was the perfect place to end our day of exploration with some delicious sangrias.

Pinchos Bar, Photo by Christina Wedge

Pinchos Bar, Photo by Christina Wedge

The Pinchos Bars are located throughout Barcelona, and are a great Spanish tradition.  Your food is brought to you on a skewer (pincho) and at the end of the meal you are charged by how many skewers are on your plate.  

Photo by Christina Wedge

Photo by Christina Wedge

Pinchos are a great way to try lots of delicious dishes without getting too full!

Crema Catalan, Photo by Christina Wedge

Crema Catalan, Photo by Christina Wedge

Last but not least, you must try this traditional Spanish dessert, Crema Catalan.  Its like a custard, and is one of the most delicious desserts I have ever had!

We hope you enjoyed our week of travel through Spain and that we have inspired you to plan your own unique vacation experience.  With a little bit of research and thinking outside the box, you can plan a one of a kind experience for you and your friends!