If you were to sum up your Barcelona experience in one to two words, what would you say? My Barcelona Experience is…
Explain why you chose those words.
Not only did I experience a whole new culture, a whole new way of life, but I grew with myself and found self-confidence in a world that was completely new to me. I experienced new foods, new customs, new sites, new sounds. Not once did I feel scared or uneasy, but rather, I felt empowered. Every new experience, every new chance I was given to learn, I understood that much more about the world around me, and of course, myself. I matured as an individual and as an active citizen. My perspectives on cultures, the country I live in and the people I surround myself with has been forever altered. I will never forget such an experience and how it has affected my life.
What was your favorite place to eat in Barcelona? Favorite food?
Tropico was my absolute favorite. It had this very Hawaiian vibe to it that I just couldn’t get over. The food was excellent, the atmosphere was great and I believe this was one of the few restaurants that were generally concerned with how my meal was. And although this restaurant was fabulous, my all-time favorite food (which was not served at this restaurant) is Patatas Bravas, a crowd favorite, of course.
Is there a site in Barcelona that you would recommend to future students that may be a little more “off the beaten path”?
The castle of Montjuic offers free-access to anyone the first Sunday of every month. I highly suggest a tour of the castle and understanding the meaning behind the artwork, the flags, the armory, and the history behind the castle.
If you had one perfect day in Barcelona where would you go, and what would you do?
I had one perfect day while I was there and it went a little like this:
Started off in the morning at around 11 am heading to the castle of Montjuic on the first Sunday of the month with a very special person. Gained free access and explored the castle. Saw the inside, walked through the corridors, and then traveled to the very top where I got a beautiful view of Barcelona. I took photos, spent time pointing out places I recognized, reminisced in the pure grandeur of Barcelona. Then, after the castle had been explored inside and out, I walked to a big opening titled “BRUNCH.” This is an EDM festival that is put on every summer featuring techno music. If you are 18+ you can enjoy sangria and cocktails galore while listening to top EDM musicians. This festival starts at around 11 am or 12 pm and goes almost all day.
After having my fill of EDM and Sangria, my very special person and I left the party scene, him, carrying a longboard, and me taking a bike that was rented out to me, went down the hill in the city, all the while Forever by Chris Brown was playing on his portable stereo. Next, we grabbed the most delicious food at Walk-to-Wok and spent the evening walking around, slurping noodles from a cartridge.
Finally, we ended up in a corridor area where people ate ice cream and sat around. We played music on the stereo and ate the most delicious German ice cream. As each song played, dancers coming from both entrances started dancing in front of us to our music. We cheered them on, danced with them and sang together. At 11:30 pm, we all packed up our things and went on our merry way back to our homes.
Quite the perfect day, huh?
What is one piece of advice that you have for future students coming to Barcelona?
Do not give up after the first week. The first week will ALWAYS be the hardest. You will feel homesick and upset, but I promise, after the first week, things get better and better. Also, Barcelona SAE does everything in their power to make students feel comfortable. If you do not like your placement, ask to change. If you do not like your homestay, ask to change. Asking for help has never been easier.