Here we are again, the new football season has been scheduled for the 2014-2015. This year is time to see the Barça team with Messi, Neymar, Iniesta, Xavi, Pique ... but also the new players like Ter Stegen, Claudio Bravo, Ivan Rakitic, Luis Suárez and Mathieu. Is a unique opportunity to see live FC Barcelona, one of the best football teams of the world.
How about taking a day off from the city to one of the most beautiful nooks of Costa Brava?, that is Cala Sa Tuna, is one of the small coves in the area, close to the medieval city of Begur and about 90 minutes drive from Barcelona.
I go there one or twice a year, but every time I get there something unique happens, I relax like if I would have been few days on holidays. Cala Sa Tuna is one of many beautiful very small fishermen villages that combine an amazing scenery with a relaxing atmosphere.
The place have a lot of opportunities from taking a relaxing and fresh bath with a bask, or walking a small part of Cami de Ronda, a trail that flips the cliffs and connects with the following villages and coves while enjoying incredible views over this part of Costa Brava.
Finally couple of recommendations in case you want to eat or stay overnight in Cala Sa Tuna.
Both the same, the Hostal Sa Tuna, an hostel restaurant just in front of the sea, there we ate last time a set menu that was spectacular, including a grilled paella that was very unique. The place have a small hostel that has been recently refurbished. The problem (exellent places always have problems) is with reservations, you have to book months ahead to find a room, they have few rooms and they are almost fully book during summer time.
This is an excellent destination for a day out from Barcelona, or even combine with a few days stay during spring or summer time.
One of my preferred places in Costa Brava.
Jaleo is the summer horse festivals unique to Menorca, my favorite Mediterranean island together with Formentera. The "Jaleo" festivals are traditional with more than a hundred years old, it has now become the name of the festivals.
The most known one is the Ciutadella one during the festivity of Saint John's, the 24th of June, very popular and very crowded, but don't worry each village in the island celebrate his own "Jaleo" during all Summer.
We have been quite a few times in Menorca and if we coincide with a "Jaleo" we always like to enjoy the "festa" (festival). Here are some photos of the Jaleo of Alaior that normally happens the second sunday of August.
The Jaleo consist of making the horses with his horsemen stand on their rear legs and walk among the crowd while an orchestra plays the same song over and over again. Yes, the same song for about 2 hours, during all the Jaleo.
Climb to Sant Jeroni, the top of the mace of Montserrat reach 1236 m above the sea level. The trekking is easy, I love to go there with my kids.
The first stop is Montserrat, worth visiting, check my post here. Here you can enjoy the Basilica, "La Moreneta", etc... . From Montserrat the ride to Sant Jeroni takes about 90 minutes each way to get to the top of Montserrat.
The best option is to take the funicular railway to Sant Joan on your way up, to raise most of the slope, from there is an easy walk to Sant Jeroni.
During the trek, and if you look closely, you'll see climbers on most of the walls of the mountain, Montserrat is a favorite place for many mountain climbers in Catalonia.
Shortly while you are walking, you will start to be amaze by the scenery of the place, with "Sant Jeroni" on the target.
The trek is very easy, mostly walking till the last few hundred meters.
The last meters are amazing, with narrow staircase that are leading you to the top.
Finally, here is the trophy, our family photo from "Sant Jeroni", a special place worth visiting, with views over Barcelona, the sea and even the Pyrenees.
The descent may be following the same steps back or save the funicular railway and go down on a stairs road. You better bring up some drink and food to help with some energy during the 3 hours excursion. It's very recommendable to ask for a map on the tourist office before you start the excursion.
As every year, streets of Sitges (a city near Barcelona) will be full of people to enjoy the spectacle that citizens have been preparing all year. Colorful costumes and floats will parade in one of the most known and famous carnivals in Europe, the Sitges Carnival 2014.
My family and me usually attend, I hope to go this year too, and make a post with new photos.
As you know, Carnival dates change every year, for this 2014 the carnival will be held from February 27 to March 5 , so .... the party is here again.
The Mobile World Congress will take place in Barcelona from 24 to 27 of February, The event will once again take place at Fira de Barcelona in Barcelona, Spain.
This is one of the most important technology fairs in the world. In this event the mobile companies will present and launch their new developments. This year it is expected more than 60.000 professionals visitors, 1.700 exhibitors of more than 200 countries.
Too much days without writing a post... I hope you have had a good start of the year and that my blog will help you prepare your next trip to Barcelona.
Today I like to share some photos of Masella, one of the nearest ski resort from Barcelona. Well ... I've to confess that it's my favorite ski resort, why? for two reasons. The first is the proximity, only one hour and a half drive from Barcelona, and the second is because is a family sky resort with easy tracks, so kids can ski safely and comfortable there.
If you come to Barcelona for a few days only and do not bring ski equipment, do not worry at the station you can rent skis and boots.
We finally decided to try the Japanese restaurant Koi Shunka. We had heard rave about it, but we are an unconditional fans of his little brother the Shunka Restaurant. The experience was very pleasant, and as the saying goes..... a picture is better than a thousand words!!!
Here you have some photos of the chosen menu.
The winter is coming and with it a lot of activities, the majority associated with Christmas.
I will list the best known in the city, all are free. Don't miss this time of the year, specially if traveling with your kids.
UNTIL 23/12 The "Fira de Santa Llúcia" is the Christmas market in the city. It is located in Plaça de la Catedral, in the Gothic Quarter. In it, you will find all kinds of Christmas decorations, the most original one is the "Caganer" a catalan traditional figure Crib.
It is traditional that in every house on Christmas Eve they have a "Tió", a special decorated trunk. Children will get around the "Tió" and sing a traditional song while they sting in the back of the "Tió" till he "shit", nougats, chocolates, neules, etc. You can see a Big "Tió" in the Plaça de la Catedral.
There are two traditional nativity scenes in the city. One at the Plaça Sant Jaume in front of the Town Council, here receives a new representation of the manger every year. The second, in the cloister of the Cathedral, here you can see a traditional manger. In both the admission is free although there are long queues to visit it but it's worth seeing it, especially for children.
At most stylish New Yorker, you could be ice skating in the center of the city in Plaça Catalunya
During Christmas time, the Magic Fountain show lights with the rhythm of xmas carols. Check carefully the schedule of the performance in the official website of the city council. Very nice show, don't miss it.
31/12 La Cursa dels Nassos - As is traditional in Barcelona the last day of the year hold a athletic event of 10km.
31/12 New Year Chimes Party - Barcelona launches an important new feature Christmas this year. For the first time the New Year Chimes will take place in a very emblematic space, Avenida Maria Cristina. From 23 hours on 31 December there will performance, castellers (human tower) and the traditional 12 New Year chimes, with big fireworks, music and party.
This is one of the quieter months as regards events in Barcelona. We will continue to enjoy the International Jazz Festival and football matches as exciting as the city derby with Barca playing Espanyol. The temperature is that we have an easy autumn with record temperature.
Here are my highlights of November in Barcelona:
01/11 - All Saints Spanish public Holiday. The night before people celebrate "The Castanyada" with some similarity to Halloween. The traditional desserts are "Panellets" and roasted chestnuts with a sweet wine "Moscatell".
01/11 - FC Barcelona - Espanyol. Spanish League match, 21:00 at Camp Nou Stadium. This is one of the most expected football games of the year. This Derby is facing the two strongest teams in the city.
06/11 - FC Barcelona - Milan. Champions League match, 20:45 at Camp Nou Stadium.
22,23,24/11 - Bcn&Cake 2013 The 2nd International Sugarcraft Exhibition of Barcelona. This sweet fair will be held in Centro de Convenciones Internacional de Barcelona (CCIB). The last year was very successful, as an amateur in these matters I was there last year and enjoyed very much. Looking forward to attend again this year.
23/11 - FC Barcelona - Granada C.F. Spanish League match, 16:00 at Camp Nou
31/11 to 23/12 Christmas Market - "Fira de Santa Llúcia". Since the end of the month of November to mid December you can visit, stroll and shop one of the most know Christmas Markets in Europe, it's located in the Plaça of the Cathedral, this emblematic square hosts many other events throughout the year such as "Mercat de Mercats" Gastronomic Fair, Santa Eulàlia Festival and every saturday you can see the "Sardanes" a traditional dance in Catalonia.
Have a beautiful November!
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