Barcelona, Spain

My husband and I spent a week in Barcelona at the beautiful Hotel Arts. I highly recommend it! The location was perfect – right by the beach, fabulous restaurants within walking distance, double-decker bus stops out front, and amazing staff. We loved the pool areas: one for adults only, and one for families – both offering lots of room and beautiful views. The hotel was A+-clean, organized, and spacious. The Hotel Arts welcomes kids, but don’t worry; we were kid-free and had plenty of room for relaxation. 


Of course, we found all the traditional Barcelona sights and activities. Here are a few of our favorites:

  • Walking the open markets. I’ve never seen anything like it! Every single “neighborhood” has its own market. A word of warning: this area is full of pickpockets, so watch your surroundings. Get a cup of fresh fruit; the watermelon was out of this world! The ice cream and nuts are to die for; and yes, in that order. Hit up at least two markets so you can see what the different areas have to offer. 

  • Jumping on the double-decker bus. These simple buses offer a great way to see the city and its architecture. You can get on and off as much as you want. Pro tip: buy your tickets online before you get to the bus stop. 

  • Enjoying a day at the beach. If you stay at the Hotel Arts, the beach sits right around the corner. The people-watching is fantastic. Local culture is alive and well!

  • Checking out the oldest family-run business in Spain. The Cava Codorniu is amazing. Taste the Cava, explore the winery, and tour the caves – truly breathtaking! Yep, I loved this day, even though I don’t love wine!

  • Touring the LUPO bag factory. You must see how they craft everything by hand. Grab your own unique LUPO bag. I can’t tell you how many compliments I receive!

  • Learning to cook. We took a class in the heart of the city; we shopped the neighborhood market and then cooked our finds. You really get a taste for the culture – plus, it’s a whole lot of fun!


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© 2020 Marissa McDonough