For the best sunset view in Barcelona…

Barcelona.

Sunset view overlooking BarcelonaOverlooking BarcelonaAmusement park lightsBut it is not just the sunset. Tibidabo is what this breathtaking mountain overlooking Barcelona. 1910 amusement park Tibidabo BarcelonaPlane flyingBut it is not just about the sunset. This place is occupied by the Sagrat Cor Church “Sacred heart of Jesus Church”. Built from 1902 until 1961. Amusement park in BarcelonaAmusement park in BarcelonaTemple of the Sacred Heart of JesusTemple of the Sacred Heart of JesusTemple of the Sacred Heart of JesusTemple of the Sacred Heart of JesusBut this is not it. Tibidabo is an amusement park. Opened in 1899, with a blue tram that started working in 1902. The park is one of the oldest in the world and is still functioning. 1910 amusement park Tibidabo Barcelona1910 amusement park Tibidabo BarcelonaAmusement park in BarcelonaAmusement park in BarcelonaAmusement park in BarcelonaAmusement park in BarcelonaAmusement park in BarcelonaAmusement park in BarcelonaAmusement park in BarcelonaAmusement park in BarcelonaTibidaboMarry go roundIn my opinion, you have not truly seen Barcelona, if you haven’t dropped a visit to Tibidabo. An unforgettable experience.

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12 things to do and see in Barcelona…

For the full post via Barcelona.

As a Middle-Eastern, Barcelona reminded me so much of Beirut. The small streets, the big old buildings, balconies that are too close to one another, faded paint, old posters, relaxed and happy people, let loose and live. Barcelona is a city full of life, laughter and free spirits.

Transportation is very easy, you can walk, take a bicycle, or use public transportation. I went by foot and used the hop on hop off bus for one day, and then i rented a bicycle and used it throughout my visit. It is very easy to go around, and all the areas are connected. Streets are bicycle friendly and the people are great and helpful.

Areas to visit: The Beaches, Parc Muntjuic, La Rambla, Catalunya Square, Saint Antoni, El Raval, Gothic Quarter, El Born, Gracia, La Segrada Familia, Parc Guell, and Tibidabo. For shopping you can try the Diagonal street.Bikes in Barcelona

1- Beaches – La Vila Olimpica

The Beaches are divided into small beach squares along the coastline, so you can bicycle starting with Barceloneta down to La Nova Mar Bella.

**For Food & Drinks: Visit Surf House located around Barceloneta and have a Paella in one of the restaurants.Barceloneta

On your way up La Rambla, you will find one of Barcelona’s main attractions “Columbus Monument” constructed in 1888 in honor to Columbus first visit to America. Columbus Monument2- Parc Montjuïc

You can go up the mountain from Port de Olimpica. It is a long walk, but a fun one. You can find buses to take you up as well. Parc Montjuic is magical. It is a get away from the city. A great escape to nature and a great way to reconnect. Spend a day exploring. The sunsets on the other side of the mountain, but you should defiantly try the teleferic and do not miss the Magic Fountain light show at night. Montjuic fountain

3- Saint Antoni – Within the boarders of Eixample

I love this neighborhood. So much art is in it and so many findings. It is fun to walk anytime during the day, and you will find so many beautiful shops that will call upon you. It is mostly alive on Sundays, and the vibe is very cool. The food is delicious and you will love brunching during the day and tapas during evening time.

**For Food & Drinks: Visit Federal Cafe, Cafe Cometa, La Dunateria, & Taranna Cafe.Saint Antoni Market

4- El Raval 

El Raval is a beautiful full of life area that includes many scattered shops next to one another. You can reach El Ravel by walking from Saint Antoni and you can easily reach the center of Catalunya square and La Rambla that also takes you down to the beach side. El Raval is an area to spend a day in and find exquisite shops in. It is vibrant day and night.

**Recommended: Chok Chocolate House, Caravelle “the food is great and try their amazing muffin”, Satans Coffee Corner.Making chocolate

5- Catalunya Square & La Rambla 

Tourists love this area. It is the center of downtown of Barcelona. It is where all the touristic transportations start and end from. The street of La Rambla is filled with people day and night. Filled with restaurants and shops targeting as many tourists as possible. You can find your hop on hop off bus from there, and any other form of transportation to and from anywhere. You can also find one of the biggest museums MACBA “Barcelona Museum of Contemporary Art”.

**Recommended: Shop at Natura and Once upon a Time both are my very favorite. Check out one of the biggest open markets La Boqueria, and visit MACBA for art admirers.La Rambla and Catalunya Down Town Barcelona

6- El Barri Gottic 

The longest stretch from La Rambla, easy to walk to and walk through.It really is the Gothic Quarter, the buildings, the details and everything about this neighborhood take you back to Old Barcelona. This area is so Medieval it feels like theater, tourists love it and it is always packed with people. Scattered with shops, easy to bicycle through and is very loud and busy during the night.old building night time gothic quarter

7- El Born 

By the end of Gothic Quarter, you will reach El Born, A posh area filled with high fashion brands and local designers. Artistic and edgy, filled with galleries and museums, cocktails and tapas. Enjoy a shopping day and a fancy night out.El Born Shop

8- Gracia 

Maybe my favorite or second favorite area in Barcelona. This area is the place to hang out during the day and find treasures in local shops. It is bohemian, with lots of shops and restaurants, music and culture. I recommend you start and end with Gracia during your visit.

**Recommended shops: Aska Dinya “for the best Palestinian food and atmosphere”, Bicioci “to work, read or write”, Nabucco Tiramisu “best coffee and dessert”, Kibuka “for great sushi”, and walk Carre de Verdi “a beautiful street for great finds”.Door and wall in Barcelona Gracia

9- La Sagrada Familia

Breathtaking is the least I can say, the closer you get to see it the more astonished you will feel. The architecture is unbeatable, it has been under construction since 1852 that is more than 100 years of construction and still going. Expecting it to be ready by 2028. Designed by the legendary Antoni Gaudi, this is one of the best architecture I have ever seen. Close up photo of the details of the church La Segrada Familia in Barcelona

10-  Parc Guell

A reality escape. It is a little up a steep hill called “Carmel Hill”, a work out if you are going by foot but a fun one if the weather is nice. Parc guell is located right above Gracia and is in an area that is lavished with old houses built even before the 1900. Worth looking them up if you are into architecture and old houses. The Parc was built between the 1900 and 1914. It was made a public park in 1926 and was constructed by the famous Antoni Gaudi inspired by organic shapes found in nature. Gaudi’s house is also located at Parc Guell and is part of the tour when you visit. Gaudi parc guell barcelona

11- Tibidabo  

Barcelona Amusement Park, located at one of the top hills of Barcelona, overlooking the best sunset view & Barcelona City. This is not just the perfect place to enjoy the day with your family, friends or self but it is also a park not to be missed. Built in 1905 over 100 years old and is still working. You can take a bus from the Catalunya square that takes you directly to the park.Amusement park in Barcelona

12- Architecture 

Last but not least, Barcelona is best for architectural discovery. From Antoni Gaudi one of the best architects in the world to ancient architects am not familiar with, Barcelona is full of wonders. The history, the creativity, the art, the passion, the details, the love is found in the constructions of their housing.

** Look out for any open houses: Sometimes they open old houses and buildings for visitors to check them out. And make sure you look for the Islamic Art inspired housing. Islamic Architecture used to be fashionable.Old houses and architecture in Barcelona by Gaudi and others

For the full article and more photos click on Barcelona

Morning Diary 24 – A love affair in between the old streets of Barcelona

Saturday, November 22 2014

Day 7

Always leave the best for last, although sometimes it also isn’t the best thing to do given the nature of life and how unpredictable things are, but gladly I must say, today was fantastic. Started my day with my cousin Darine, biking to the beach sight to watch the sunrise, returned my gorgeous bicycle and started my walk between my favorite streets in Barcelona. Starting point was Gracia, to send most of my time in my favorite area taking it down to Sagrada Familia, down to the center of Catalina, Ramblas, Gottica and El Born. Getting lost between streets, finding incredible finds, and the deepest jewels are always in the lowest bottom end of the ocean, so you got to keep digging until you find shops, people, and wisdom that you will always and forever remember. This life we live in, if it is lived without art surrounding us, then it truly is missing out on the best there is. Don’t settle down for less than the art you enjoy, the art you connect with, the art you can use to speak for you. Art is in everything.

When it is time to say goodbye, it is also time to listen to songs you relate to and sing them out loud: Riding through the city on my bike all day cause the filth took away my license It doesn’t get me down and I feel okay Cause the sights that I’m seeing are priceless. You might laugh, you might frown Walkin’ round the mid town… Sun is the sky Oh why, Oh why would I wanna be anywhere else? Sun is in the sky Oh why, oh Why would I wanna be anywhere else?

Here is Ldn by Lily Allen

All photographs are taken with a Canon 70D

Morning Diary 23 – How to spend a day living the 1900’s only right here and right now? … I did it, and it really felt like a dream.

Thursday, November 20 2014

Barcelona, Spain

What a beautiful day, my vacation is almost over, and I am now trying to soak in the very last bits of my traveling encounters. When traveling, I love checking out the festivals and events happening in the city and if they interest me at all, I take part, and to my luck, today, was an open day to many museums in Barcelona, but since it was a beautiful sunny day, I had to divide my time into 3: museums, beach and the famous 1910 amusement park. Truly this Tibidabu Park is over 100 years old, isn’t that just insane? No actually it is the best thing ever, not only is it so much fun, it is truly something beautiful to witness, photograph and just enjoy. I love fairy tales, Disney world, toy land, lala land, the fairies and the angels, call me crazy, call me a dreamer, but I believe they all exist and when I get the chance to visit an amusement park and one that is over 100 years old, then I sure consider myself lucky.

And here is a little something for you to go back to even before the 1900’s for the love of Beethoven

All photographs are taken with a Canon 70D

Morning Diary 21 – A day with Gaudi in Barcelona

Monday, November 17 2014

Barcelona, Spain

I dedicate this post to Gaudi, and pray: may your soul be as freely creative as it once was and thank you for the beautiful architecture you have left us to get inspired with and go by example. Truly nothing is impossible, today I decided to elaborate and search within my soul for the connection I have felt with Gaudi’s work and I share with you the following: 1- Trust your instincts 2- The best things happen unexpectedly and 3- Everything has beauty.

Now enjoy the life you have between your hands, and listen to your deepest callings, try to be the most different there is in you, and stand out. Only those who share with the world, this that they believed truly and deeply in but no one else was able to express are the ones who will always be truly remembered.

Here is one of my favorite alternative rock songs by Half Moon, Run half circle.

All photographs are taken with a Canon 70D

Morning Diary 20 – Strolling the hipster corners of Barcelona

Sunday, November 16 2014

Barcelona, Spain

When I travel, I usually like to find the unusual and most artsy shops. So I do my research and read what other bloggers have to advice. In my below photos, I have decided to follow one of the online travel guides for 12hrs in Barcelona which I highly recommend you checking out since I truly had an incredible time hoping from one shop to another and experiencing the most tasteful artful and urban shops in Barcelona. Of course, you will always find your little something in between, so while you follow someone else’s advice do not hesitate switching gears and following what calls on for you. From Sant Antoni, to Ramblas, Boqueria market, Carrer del Carme, Gotica, and El Born. I will be talking more in depth about them as soon as I add Barcelona to my travel tab, meanwhile enjoy this indie song by Zack Sobiech, clouds.

All photographs are taken with a Canon 70D

Morning Diary 19 – For the love of Architecture visit Barcelona…

Barcelona, Spain

Today, I decided to take a break, hop on a bus and relax. Learn about the city am spending a week in and look at things from the top. The first thing that astonished me in this beautiful city of Barcelona is its architecture. Gaudi is everywhere, and when he isn’t there, you can see the people who are inspired by him. I’ve always heard about La Sagrada Familia, but I did not expect what I was coming to. Really this piece of art is nothing like the photographs, it is beyond words, beyond reality and beyond art; I was blown away. As for the rest of city, it has reminded me of Beirut’s beautiful streets and architecture in Lebanon. Buildings are very close to one another, and balconies are almost connecting neighbors, you can just easily step out from your own balcony into the one right across from you. The best part about the buildings in Barcelona is the random prints that surround some of them, that create authenticity, and history speaking between walls. While you take a look at my photographs, enjoy one of my favorite folk ambient songs by high highs, open seasons.