We really like doing bicycle tours. You can cover a lot of territory, meet fun people, and you can usually manage to get a few photographs as well. We chose Fat Tire Bicycle Tours (22 Euro for 4 hours) because they had great reviews and you could just rock up on the day without having to book prior.
These were about 32 of us on the day we went, so they divided us up into two tours. We had Buddha, a young guy, with lots of character, as our guide. A guy who knew the history of Barcelona and delivered it in a humorous way. I am not that into history, but he held my attention the whole time.
We started in Placa de Sant Jaume, in Barri Gotic, the old centre of town, where we had our first history “lesson”.
Then we progressed to the Cathedral, Placa del Rei, and Palau de la Musica Catalana. This last building survived Franco’s reign and is now World Heritage Listed. You can tour it or go and see a show there – it is an operating musical venue.
The people of Barcelona really love being outside when the weather is good and after riding triumphantly through the Arc de Triomf (yes Barcelona has one too!) we visited the Parc de la Ciutadella which, being a Sunday and great weather, had a very festive feel to it. There were big colourful balloons for sale, kids, dogs, and families everywhere. We had fun weaving through everyone and keeping up with the group.
We were off to see the Bull Ring (even though they have stopped the fighting). Not far away from the ring was the Sagrada Familia (Gaudi’s unfinished work). An amazing sight with an amazing history (more of that later).
The last place we visited was Barcoloneta (the beach that was man made for the Olympics in 1992). The sand was courtesy of the Sahara, and whenever it washes away, they just pump it back up! The Mediterranean was sparkling blue, and dotted with white sails as we shared lunch and sangria on the beach. The esplanade was packed and everyone was intent on a good time.
Afterward we had to pedal madly back to Barri Gotic as some bad weather was approaching from the Pyrenees. Black clouds had crept closer and closer, while we looked out on to the sparking blue ocean. Eventually we could not ignore them any longer.
A wonderful four hours full of fun, laughter, learning and pedaling!
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