Holi festival of clours, Barcelona. Photo: Gloria Atanmo.

14 Things You'll Miss When Leaving Barcelona

by Gloria Atanmo Jul 23, 2015

1. Zero worries about open container.

Never have I experienced a city where you can stroll pass an officer with an open container and he’ll probably nod or salute you as you walk passed. Thanks to “cervezabeer” guys on the streets, there’s a collaborative effort to get you to a premium level of tipsy even before you hit the bar.

2. Antoni Gaudi’s architectural stamp of beauty all over the city.

The architectural genius that is Gaudi is a highlight and sometimes a reason to visit Barcelona in itself. Passing Gaudi’s several pieces of work makes every day feel like you’re walking through a museum.

3. Sexy police officers

They wear their hats to the side, they’re always perfectly groomed, and they have a strap on their upper thighs that look like it has no function but to tease. Touché officer. I’ll just be over here committing a petty crime waiting for you to rest on me, ahem, I mean ARREST me.

4. Gorgeous plazas.

In case you forgot the definition of flawless.

5. Parades with giants

I’ve learned to stop questioning Catalan traditions and accept them while silently laughing inside. The first time I paraded alongside “gigantes y cabezudos” (giants and big-heads, usually depicting historical figures or archetypes of the town), I’m not too prideful to admit I may have pissed my pants.

6. Castells

Catalan pride has never felt stronger than when you’re watching them mount and unmount themselves with this long-standing human tower tradition. It’s simply chilling and something I will never get tired of watching!

7. Rallies and protests

It’s not Barcelona if you didn’t casually walk into a protest. Whether about independence, taxes, or how much they hate tourists (oops!), the atmosphere is electric.

8. Sh*tting logs around Christmas time

Caga Tío. The sh*tting log that poops out presents after being smacked by the kids the night before Christmas is all you need to know about Catalan culture. A much cooler story than Santa Claus tries to sell us.

9. Being called “guapa” 10 times during a grocery store checkout.

Spanish is a sexy language. And despite you rolling out of bed 10 minutes before arriving to the local supermarket, expect the cash register woman to call you some form of beautiful multiple times.

10. Amazing festivals.

You can try and keep up with all the festivals in Barcelona, but you will fail. Or at least your liver will. Barcelona finds any reason to celebrate anything.

11. Bars everywhere.

In metro stations, in libraries, in gyms. Thank you, from the bottom of my liver.

12. One of the most efficient metros on the planet.

Barcelona metros are accurate to the very second of arrival. And if running late or early, timers will adjust accordingly so that what you see on the screen is always accurate.

13. Nightlife. Oh, the nightlife.

When a lounge plays music loud enough for you to dance to even though you’re way out on the beach, what more could you really ask for in life?

14. The views

No matter what part of the city you’re in, expect the view to blow you away. Park in the front, city in the middle, mountains in the back, beach on the side. Thank you, Barcelona. That’ll be all from you today.

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