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In a city as cosmopolitan as Barcelona, visitors and locals alike all have their own agendas. Words: Miles Fielder
For some it’s the all-night nightlife, for others it's the very fine food and drink, while for others still it’s the art, architecture and museums. Whatever the case, the best way to experience Barcelona is to wander around its streets, get lost in the throng of the crowds, chance upon that gallery, cava bar or tapas restaurant. It's a cliche, but there really is something for everyone in Barcelona.
This Mediterranean port of 1.5 million people is at once chic and traditional, stylish and industrial, wealthy and poverty-ridden. It's also the capital of Catalunya, a region considered by many to be separate from the rest of Spain, as its distinct character, turbulent history and own language (spoken in addition to Spanish) suggests.
The heart of the city is bisected by La Ramblas, arguably Spain’s most
Ski and snowboard
The summer months are all but over, meaning that thousands of powder junkies are looking to the slopes with anticipation and planning their ski and snowboarding holidays. STA Travel have hooked up With Nielson to provide a monster range of snow holidays in 73 resorts in 11 countries, including France, Andorra, USA and Canada.
They currently have some special offers for Pas De La Casa in Andorra to fly out on specific days
Sun 23 Jan £299 This package is based on two people sharing and includes flights, transfers, accommodation and half board at the Club Hotel Slalom.
Sun 6 Feb £199 This price is based on six people sharing and includes flights, transfers and self-catering accommodation at the Frontiere Blanche Pardis Blanc Apartments. Sun 6 Feb £329 This price is based on two people sharing and includes flights, transfers, tWin accommodation and half board at the Club Hotel Llac Negre.
famous street. This bustling boulevard connects L'Eixample (the modern city) at one end with the waterfront at the other. In between is Ciutat Vella (the old city), Barri Gotic (the Gothic quarter) and El Raval (the slum/red light district).
Within this medieval core of narrow streets and winding alleys you'll find such gems as the Mercat de la Boqueria, an ancient food market, the college, with its orange tree courtyard, Barcelona cathedral and the Picasso museum.
Head down to the port and try the fresh-as-it-gets seafood, then walk into La Barceloneta and flop onto its beaches. Alternatively, scale one of Barcelona's two
Don‘t monkey around with me: Snowflake
mountains, Montjuic (home of the Miro museum) or Tibidabo and its funfair.
Or head into L'Exiample for Barcelona's most famous architectural feat, Gaudi’s La Sagrada Familia (the cathedral) and beyond into Gracia (the suburbs) for Gaudi’s park, Parc Guell. Just as essential is the Parc Zoologic, home to Snowflake, the world's only albino gorilla in captivity.
The only problem with Barcelona is there's just too much to see in a short stay; you'll want to return again and again and . . .
STA Travel are offering a great group deal where one in five of a party get to travel free, and a two- for-one deal with their learn to ski packages. They are also offering a £20 discount if you depart for France on Sun 19 Dec, Sat 29 Jan, Sat 5 Feb or Sat 26 Feb and if you depart for ltaly on Mon 20 Dec, Sun 30 Jan, Sun 6 Feb or Sun 27 Feb.
118 THE lIST 23 Sep—7 Oct 1999
Antoni Gaudi's La Pedrera
Stating the obvious
Parc Zoologic Home to Snowflake, the only albino gorilla in captivity.
La Sagrada Familia Widely considered to be the essential Sight in the City, this is the project to which Gaudi dedicated his life, a towering cathedral dedicated to the Holy Family.
Park Guell The (Saudi park in which the great architect put his hand to landscape as well as buildings.
Motjui'c One of the hills looking over Barcelona, it is home to museums and the Olympic Stadium.
Barri Gotic The famous gothic quarter, lose yourself in the narrow, winding streets and tiny plazas.
The List Alternative
The Diesel Superstore Set in the shopping haven of Barri Gotic, the lines are far cheaper than any British sale.
Mercat de la Boqueria AnCient, covered food market where you can haggle for every Culinary delight under the sun including 96,000 types of Olives,
Viena Cafe An old style cafe; pull up a stool and enjoy their outstanding coffee, crOissants and bikini, the ham and cheese toastie.
The Moon Express Set up by the Municipal Transport, this night-time, open-air train takes you around Barcelona’s best-lit bUildings, Get on it earlier rather than later as many lights are turned off by 1 1pm.
Nou Camp An enormous 120,000 capacity stadium home to one of Europe’s legendary club sides. Barcelona.
STA Travel offer return fares to Barcelona from Glasgow and Edinburgh for £215 (including tax).
’ STA Travel are at 184 Byres Road and The University of Strathclyde, 90 John Street Glasgow. Tel: 0141 338 6000
27 Forrest Road, Edinburgh. Tel 0131 226 7747 0 30 Upperkirkgate, Aberdeen. Tel 01224 658222 0 www.statravel.co.uk