Barcelona to Granada…actually make that Malaga

This morning saw Nick and I both waking up pretty groggy. As we have both been a little under the weather, it was a hard ask for us to rise up and find the energy to explore Barcelona before our flight to Granada in the evening.

But we got up around 8:30am and packed up our gear, showered and headed out into Barcelona.  First port of call: breakfast.  Once again we had breakfast at Artisa Barcelona but this time we ordered a magnicficent carrot cake and a toasted ham and cheese sandwich to share. These paired with some coffees did wonderfully.

Second port of call: we needed to store our bags for the day. It would be NO FUN lugging around our gear for hours. So Nick located a baggage locker we could store our stuff in until we needed to collect it again (around 6pm) and off we went!

From our research the night before, we had seen most of the points of interest of the city during our bike tour the previous day so we revisited the Cathedral where we managed to take some nicer pictures than the previous day and then headed on to the Museum of the History of Barcelona which was mentioned during our tour the previous day as a cool place to visit.

The museum also manages other historic sites all around the city, most of them archaeological sites displaying remains of the ancient Roman city, called Barcino in Latin. Some others date to medieval times, including the Jewish quarter.

We spent some time here, mostly because the ruins were so large – there was a lot to see! In some places, there were windows where you could see up into the modern street-scape.  It was very impressive and many of the artefacts had been preserved very well.

After this, we took a cheeky break for ice-cream at Gelarto Rosa who serve their home-made ice-creams and gelatos in the shape of roses. Nick had a coconut and cherry-lime sorbet while I had a latte meringue and white chocolate and lavender.  All the icecream varieties were pretty special but you know that I have a weakness for lavender flavoured things!

After the ice cream we wondered around a little, stopping to look at some local markets, designers and whatever caught our eye.  But in truth, we were both feeling a bit flat and so we decided to head towards the beach to relax since it was a much nicer day than it was yesterday.

We walked the whole way down and stopped at a food market at Port Vell for a light, late lunch. Nick found a stand selling beers and we shared some empanadas which were filled with delicious fish, beef and a vegetarian mix.  They were pretty tasty!

There was also a dodgy knock-offs market in the vicinity which we navigated through before we hit the beach.  We sat for a while and relaxed and let our poor sore feet rest. We then decided to inflict a bit more abuse on them and walked the length of the beach (Bianca had told us the previous day that this was about 7km).

We stopped at the midway point to watch some guys hitting up the city exercise track, located picturesquely on the beach. These guys were jacked up to the max with muscle and were demonstrating some really athletic techniques.  I think Nick didn’t believe my assertions of “I could do that” though I was pretty sure I could.  I didn’t feel the need to prove anything though so quietly sat with Nick and enjoyed the sun and beach.

Before long, we decided we better head back into the city and collect our luggage and catch the bus to the airport.  We walked back through some of the path we had taken on the bike tour, back past the park and the arc de triomphe area.

We collected the bags without any issues and also managed to catch the next bus to the airport right on time around 6pm.  So far, so good!

Once we were at the airport, once again, there was a very limited amount of food options open to us.  We had planned to eat once we got to Granada since it wouldn’t be too late by then, but Nick suddenly succumbed to a massive hunger so we settled for some dirty Hungry Jacks (or Burger King as its called here).

We then really only had to kill time until we could board our flight so I blogged and Nick researched Granada as he likes to do. Soon enough, we saw the “go to gate” prompt on the departures board and so headed that way.  There was already a massive line and boarding Vueling was again a bit of a task.  We were bussed out to the plane again and it was absolutely pouring rain by that time.  Thank goodness it waited till after we got to the airport!

However, boarding went relatively smoothly and Nick and I got space in the overhead lockers this time (score!) and right on time, we were off. The flight was smooth riiiiight until it was time to descend.

The pilot made an announcement over the PA in Spanish that had everyone around us murmuring in discontent.  When the announcement was repeated in English we understood why.  Due to high winds at Granada airport, they were diverting our flight to Malaga.

For Nick and I, this wasn’t too bad.  We knew that it was only a couple of hours drive from Granada but we were worried about what we could expect from the airline by way of assistance.  As it turned out, this was nothing.  Once we landed and disembarked, there wasn’t even any ground staff to assist travellers or advise how to place a claim or anything.

So left to our own devices, Nick and I decided that the best option was to stay at a nearby budget hotel and organise transport to Grenada the next day. But we were extremely tired, cranky and miffed at the lack of any guidance from Vueling.  Nick booked a night at the nearby Ibis Budget Hotel and we caught a taxi there.

Check-in seemed to go okay but when we got up to the room, showered and settled in for the night, we got a call at 12:30am telling us there was a ‘problem’ with our payment and we had to come down to sort it out. Nick told me to stay put and he headed down to sort it out.  It turns out it was some sort of clerical error and Nick blasted them because really, this could have waited till morning when we were checking out.

While the morning in Barcelona had been quite fun, the unexpected turn of events stressed both of us out, even though we managed to handle it pretty well (in my opinion). We were hoping that the next day we could get back on schedule and move on to Grenada.

Km’s walked: 21.3

Flights complete: 7/10 – but an unexpected destination!

Tomorrow: Granada, we hope!



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