It seems that recently everyone I know has decided to go to Barcelona, Spain. I went a couple of years ago, so I’m deciding to just put all my tips about the great city all in one place for everyone to read. (Feel free to add your picks in the comments.) Check it out:
A hotel I really wanted to stay in was the Hotel Banys Oriental. It’s moderately priced, and is very sleek and modern, but unfortunately it was all booked up by the time I got around to securing a room. It’s in the SoHo-ish area of Barcelona, meaning hip, but slightly fancy. The area is a little bit on the more expensive side in terms of restaurants and stores, but a nice area right of La Rambla.
I especially liked the El Raval area of Barcelona, which is the southwest side of La Rambla. It can get kind of dodgy at night (there was literally one street we walked down where I think it was all drunk people and prostitutes), but just stay on the main streets and know where you’re going and you’ll be good. It’s fine in the daytime as well.
Cool hip restaurants are scattered throughout the area and it’s the “ethnic” area of Barcelona–but a very up-and-coming neighborhood. In NYC terms, it’s kinda like the equivalent of the Lower East Side/Chinatown.