Festa Major de Gràcia: See the Streets Come Alive!

Enjoy the Festa Major de GraciaThe Festa Major de Gràcia is springing up in Barcelona again this year from August 15th through the 21st. One of the city’s foremost street festivals, this is a wonderful time to visit and experience traditional Catalan culture in one of the most beautiful and quirky neighborhoods in Catalonia. Both an opportunity to learn about Spanish traditions as well as enjoy delicious food and wonderful entertainment, Festa Major de Gràcia is truly an event of the year for many residents who graciously devote their public spaces to celebrating their ancestry, all the while welcoming guests – about 1.5 million of them each year – to share in this annual celebration.

A Local Tradition

Gràcia was once an independent town outside of Barcelona proper. As the city grew it engulfed this small community, but its roots have remained intact over the years through the hard work and commitment of the founding families. A way in which the area has remained such a tight community over the years is by hosting their annual Festa Major de Gràcia. Completely volunteer-led, members of the community have continued, year-after-year, to band together and host this outstanding celebration of Catalan culture in their very own streets. The communal feeling they create is indeed what keeps both residents and visitors returning every year for this event.

Grand Decorations

The main attraction is the outlandish and extravagant decorations that take months of planning, and days of setup before the festival each year. Local business owners and community members devote a lot of time to transforming the neighborhood into different scenes of underwater and Outerspace worlds, or even a zombie hangout. Every evening after sunset these displays light up, making for a beautiful evening stroll or an epic time to enjoy some tapas. The biggest crowds are found after sunset on August 15th as people flock to the streets to witness the first lighting of the year. Don’t miss seeing what worlds will arise at this year’s celebration!

Other Activities at Festa Major de Gràcia

Aside from the decorations, which are themselves worth the trip, festival goers can also look forward to tasting many dishes of Catalan tradition, drinking their wines, and enjoying their music that is played right in the street. This festival is completely free, besides the food and drink you might enjoy amid the created worlds, and is a the perfect activity for the whole family. The little ones will love exploring, eating and dancing in this festive atmosphere. More information on this year’s schedule can be found here in the coming weeks, so you can start getting excited for the Festa Major de Gràcia 2016.

Come Stay with Us at bizFlats Vacation Rentals!

Being a busy Mediterranean metropolitan city, Barcelona is full of fun, inventive and traditional events like this one. If you have yet to visit this wonderful destination, be it for a holiday or just because you’ve never seen it, don’t wait any longer — start planning your trip now! While looking for a place to stay, be sure to peruse these wonderful short term rentals throughout the city, from the beach to the Gothic Quarter. There is no better way to explore a new place than from the comfort of your very own urban flat.

Photo by JackF / Thinkstock

What is the Barcelona Gothic Quarter?

Spend a day at the Barcelona Gothic QuarterBarcelona’s tourist attractions are so numerous and intriguing; from the towering Sagrada Familia to the sunny Barceloneta Beach, you’ll never run out of things to do in this city.  While planning a trip to this incredible destination, you might have trouble choosing which sights you want to see first.  However, the Barcelona Gothic Quarter is, without a doubt, a must-see spot in this city; containing many different restaurants, shops, and historical sights, this area has all the ingredients for an enjoyable experience.  Discover everything you need to know about the amazing Barcelona Gothic Quarter and add it to your vacation itinerary today!

What is the Barcelona Gothic Quarter?

The Barcelona Gothic Quarter, or Barri Gòtic, is a beautiful historic district that draws both visitors and locals alike with its peaceful atmosphere and one-of-a-kind activities.  Comprised of a myriad of streets and squares, this neighborhood gives you a peek into Barcelona’s fascinating past.  This area contains the City Hall as well as the beloved Barcelona Gothic Quarter cathedral.  You can even see the remains of the ancient Roman temple of Augustus nearby.

Where is the Barcelona Gothic Quarter Located?

This place is easy to find; located in the center of the old city of Barcelona, it stretches from La Rambla to Via Laietana.  You might stumble upon it when you spot the tall spire of the Cathedral Santa Creu, a gorgeous cathedral that has been in the Barcelona Gothic Quarter since the year 1298, when its construction began.  Metro stops are located at both sides of this neighborhood, making it even easier to reach.  

What Can You Do at the Barcelona Gothic Quarter?

There are so many fun things to do at this favorite Barcelona tourist attraction!  First, you should take a Barcelona Gothic Quarter walking tour to see all the breathtaking sights of this area with a knowledgeable guide to teach you about the history of each one.  Next, settle down for a delicious meal at one of the many Barcelona Gothic Quarter restaurants; after all, no trip is complete without treating yourself to some delectable dining!  Head to Tapeo Bar if you’re craving some authentic Catalan food (like tapas, of course!) or El Quatre Gats, which is famous for being the site of Picasso’s first art exhibition ever.  After you’ve satisfied your appetite, complete your day here by browsing the many shops and stores lining these streets to find the perfect souvenir to commemorate your trip!

Come Stay with Us at bizFlats Vacation Rentals!

After your exciting afternoon of exploring Barcelona’s finest attractions, take some time to unwind by staying in the best accommodations possible!  bizFlats Vacation Rentals offers luxurious lofts, villas, cottages, and apartments located throughout the most picturesque parts of town.  Whether you want to treat yourself to views of the beach or settle down in the heart of the city, we have the perfect spot for you!  We know you’ll love our comfortable furnishings and incredible amenities, so check our availability online right now to book your favorite vacation rental in Barcelona!

Photo by thehague / Thinkstock

Why the Casa de Batlló is One of the Best Attractions in Barcelona

Enjoy the casa de batllo in BarcelonaBarcelona contains numerous extraordinary qualities that make it a prime vacation destination.  Some visitors travel here for the remarkable cuisine, while others prefer exploring the towering mountains and beautiful beaches.  However, some say Barcelona’s most defining attribute is its incredible, one-of-a-kind architecture.  This exotic city is filled with the works of the talented and revolutionary architect, Antoni Gaudí.  Some of his most famous pieces include the Bellesguard Tower, the Sagrada Familia, and, last but not least, Casa de Batlló.  Also known as “the house of the dragon,” this particular building is considered one of the most bizarre forms of architecture in all of the city.  Learn everything you need to know about the Casa de Batlló, then start planning your visit so you can see this amazing structure and all its fascinating attributes with your own eyes!

All about Casa de Batlló

Casa Batlló Hours

You can visit Casa Batlló any day of the week, 365 days per year!  The Casa Batlló hours run from 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m., so you can stop by anytime during your exploration of Barcelona’s many attractions.  

Casa Batlló Tickets

Conveniently available for purchase online, Casa Batlló tickets cost about $25.00 with discounts for students and seniors.  Children under the age of 7 are allowed in for free!

What to See at the Casa Batlló

This architectural treasure will amaze you the moment it comes into view!  The exterior is decorated with gorgeous shades of colorful mosaics, while its appearance is made of curved and wavy shapes, rather than sharp angles and straight lines.  With the shiny tiles, arched roof, and protruding balconies, some say it resembles a dragon.  Inside Casa Batlló, you’ll find more vibrant mosaics arranged in swirling patterns, along with colored windows and skylights.  The Casa Batlló interior was influenced by the architect’s love of marine life, as can be seen through the dominant blue and green colors and the shapes of coral and other sea creatures scattered throughout.  

History of the Casa de Batlló

Antoni Gaudí designed this masterpiece for a wealthy aristocrat, Josep Batlló, around the year 1904.  He used his wide variety of colors and numerous light sources to make the home’s overall atmosphere light-hearted and joyful.  The residents of this home were able to enjoy its spacious ground floor, four additional floors, loft, and terrace.  Gaudí’s attention to detail, combined with his passion for art and design, was what makes this home a beloved Barcelona attraction to this day.

Come Stay with Us at bizFlats Vacation Rentals!

After your exciting afternoon of exploring one of Barcelona’s finest attractions, take some time to unwind by staying in the best accommodations possible!  bizFlats Vacation Rentals offers luxurious lofts, villas, cottages, and apartments located throughout the most picturesque parts of town.  Whether you want to treat yourself to views of the beach or settle down in the heart of the city, we have the perfect spot for you!  We know you’ll love our comfortable furnishings and incredible amenities, so check our availability online right now to book your favorite vacation rental in Barcelona!

Photo by Yuanping / Thinkstock

Where to Go for the Best Barcelona Cooking Class

Learn how to make tapas in a Barcelona cooking classOne of the most celebrated qualities of Barcelona’s unique and exotic culture is its incredible cuisine!  This city is known for creating some of the finest foods you’ve ever tasted; no matter where you go out to eat, you’re sure to enjoy a meal you’ll likely never forget.  Since this food is so amazing, why not take this amazing dining experience home with you?  There are countless different places you can go around the city to take a Barcelona cooking class while you’re visiting!  You can learn how to prepare some of the most classic Catalan dishes so you can make them at home once you return!  Learn all about four of the best places to take a Barcelona cooking class to help you start planning your vacation today.

4 of the Best Places to Take a Barcelona Cooking Class

  1. Cook and Taste Barcelona Cooking Classes

This organization will help familiarize you with some of Barcelona’s essential dishes, cooking styles, and seasonal ingredients.  Cook and Taste Barcelona has some skilled chefs on their staff to walk you through the tips and tricks of Catalan cooking.  This is bound to be an experience that’s both engaging and educational.  

  1. BCNKitchen Barcelona Cooking Class

Put on an apron and get ready for a class that’s both fun and insightful!  BCNKitchen Barcelona offers a wide range of classes to provide visitors with the opportunity to create numerous, traditional Catalan dishes and beverages.  You’ll be able to prepare tapas, arroces, pasta fresca, and much more.  At the end of the class, you’ll get the chance to sit down and savor the exquisite meal you’ve created!  

  1. Barcelona Cooking

Prepare your taste buds for a day with Barcelona Cooking!  They offer a variety of hands-on classes and activities to familiarize you with Catalan foods and cooking styles.  One of the activities includes a tour of La Boqueria, the local food market, during which the instructors teach the participants about the produce grown nearby, as well as other ingredients needed for Catalan cooking.  They’ll even show you how to pair exquisite Catalan wines with your meals!

  1. Travel Bound Barcelona

With some of the most enjoyable tapas cooking classes in town, you don’t want to skip taking lessons from Travel Bound Barcelona!  They’ll also show you how to make authentic paella while you sip on some sweet sangria.  These friendly chefs will walk you through every step of the process so you end up with some fantastic food at the end of the class.

Come Stay with Us at bizFlats Vacation Rentals!  

Complete your vacation of a lifetime by staying in the best accommodations while you’re in town experiencing the delicious cuisine of Barcelona!  bizFlats Vacation Rentals provides some of the most luxurious apartments, villas, and lofts, all located throughout the most picturesque parts of the city.  Choose from staying in a beautiful spot with views of the beach or right in the heart of the bustling city.  Each property is equipped with the finest furnishings and amenities so you’re bound to feel right at home.  Check our availability today to find the most incredible place to stay during your visit to Barcelona!

Photo by VYCHEGZHANINA / Thinkstock

How to Have the Best Day Ever at the Sagrada de Familia

How to Have the Best Day Ever at the Sagrada de Familia

Rich with history and culture, Barcelona is a dream destination for those who adore art and architecture!  There are a myriad of museums, galleries, and historical sites that are a treat to visit; filled with breathtaking artwork and unique creations, this exotic city contains all kinds of fascinating attractions like none other in the world.  One of the best places you can visit here is the Sagrada de Familia, a towering Roman Catholic church that contains exquisite decor and extravagant adornments.  Learn all about what this incredible cathedral has to offer to discover why this is Barcelona’s most popular tourist attraction!

Everything You Need to Know about Visiting the Sagrada de Familia

History of the Sagrada de Familia

Construction of this famed monument began all the way back in 1882, directed by the talented architect Antoni Gaudí.  Built as a dedication to the Holy Family (“Sagrada Familia”), this project soon became Gaudí’s biggest and most significant endeavor.  He worked tirelessly on this church until his death in 1926; today, this gorgeous is still under construction and won’t be completed until the year 2026.  Almost 150 total years of construction is a long time; the day the Sagrada de Familia is finished will truly be a historic day to remember!

What to See at the Sagrada de Familia

There are countless things to see at the Sagrada de Familia; inside, you’ll be treated to views of the five naves (worked into the layout of a giant Latin cross), the apse (one half of a domed roof area), and its extraordinary vault-and-pillar system.  The sheer size of the interior will blow you away!  Don’t forget to take a look at the Rosary Chapel and crypt.  The most noticeable feature of the exterior are the tall towers; you can actually climb to the peak of these by way of elevators and spiral staircases to see panoramic views of this spectacular area.  

About Antoni Gaudí

Antoni Gaudí’s works are not limited to the Sagrada de Familia!  If you want to see more of his extraordinary influence on Barcelona, all you have to do is take a stroll through this city; his one-of-a-kind style is seen throughout numerous attractions in Barcelona.  A few you don’t want to miss are the Casa Batlló, Bellesguard, and Parc Güell.

How to Get Your Sagrada de Familia Tickets

The recommended method of buying your Sagrada de Familia tickets is online; since is the most popular Barcelona tourist attraction, the line to purchase tickets at the actual location is extremely long.  Skip the wait and buy your tickets in advance so you’ll have more time to explore this amazing monument.  

Come Stay with Us at bizFlats Vacation Rentals!

After your exciting afternoon of exploring Barcelona’s finest attractions, take some time to unwind by staying in the best accommodations possible!  bizFlats Vacation Rentals offers luxurious lofts, villas, cottages, and apartments located throughout the most picturesque parts of town.  Whether you want to treat yourself to views of the beach or settle down in the heart of the city, we have the perfect spot for you!  We know you’ll love our comfortable furnishings and incredible amenities, so check our availability online right now to book your favorite vacation rental in Barcelona!

Photo by Max Ozerov / Thinkstock

What You Need to Know Before Buying Football Tickets in Barcelona

What You Need to Know Before Buying Football Tickets in Barcelona

Football (also known as soccer to some travelers) has been an essential part of Barcelona’s culture for quite some time now.  A tradition that originated all the way back in 1899, this game has developed over the years to become the thrilling experience that it is today!  If you’re planning a vacation to Barcelona, make sure to attend one of these exciting FC Barcelona games to help the locals here cheer on this talented team to victory.  There are a few things you’ll need to know when purchasing your football tickets in Barcelona, so learn all the necessary information first so you can enjoy watching these amazing Barcelona home games!

4 Things You Need to Know about Buying Football Tickets in Barcelona

  1. Barcelona Football Schedule

The Barcelona football schedule is usually confirmed and released to the public every year during mid-July.  You can then view the list of teams that Barcelona will be playing to determine which Barcelona home games you want to attend.  You can view these fixtures on the official FC Barcelona website once it’s available and even sign up for their email updates to have it sent directly to your inbox.  

  1. Football Tickets in Barcelona: Prices

Prices for these games depend on the significance of each match.  The cost can range from 15 Euros (approximately $17.00) all the way up to 247 Euros (or about $281.00).  These prices also depend on where you want to sit; general admission is much more affordable than front row seats.  Check the prices online to see which games work best for you during your Barcelona vacation.  

  1. Where to Purchase Football Tickets in Barcelona

Purchasing Barcelona soccer tickets can be done in several different ways.  You can buy them online, over the phone, at an ATM, or directly from the ticket office.  (Buying them from us here at bizFlats Vacation Rentals is also an excellent option, since we have inside contacts at FC Barcelona who can always get us tickets, even if the game you want to attend is sold out!  Call us at +34 934 925 721 for all the details.)

  1. About Camp Nou

All the Barcelona home games are played at the magnificent Camp Nou, a colossal stadium that can hold up to 99,354 cheering fans!  The largest stadium in all of Spain, this enormous establishment, constructed in 1957, is located at C. Aristides Maillol, 12, 08028 Barcelona, Spain.

Come Stay with Us at bizFlats Vacation Rentals!  

Complete your vacation of a lifetime by staying in the best accommodations while you’re in town to experience the incredible FC Barcelona games!  bizFlats Vacation Rentals provides some of the most luxurious apartments, villas, and lofts, all located throughout the most picturesque parts of the city.  Choose from staying in a beautiful spot with views of the beach or right in the heart of the bustling city.  Each property is equipped with the finest furnishings and amenities so you’re bound to feel right at home.  Check our availability today to find the most incredible place to stay during your visit!

Photo by johny007pan / Thinkstock

Take a Ride in the Montjuïc Cable Car to See the Best Views in Barcelona

Take a Ride in the Montjuïc Cable Car to See the Best Views in Barcelona

Traveling is good for you; not only does it refresh the mind and the body, but also leaves you with memories that will last a lifetime.  If you’re wondering where to take your next big trip, look no further than Barcelona; this exotic city has countless activities and attractions!  One of the highlights of your Barcelona vacation should be a trip to the magnificent Montjuïc Castle, a colossal landmark overlooking the crystal blue waters of the Mediterranean Sea.  Once serving as a military fortress, it now contains exhibits describing its history to educate the public; its prime location at the top of this city’s most historic mountain also creates some of the finest, panoramic views of the city and its surrounding sea port.  However, the best part of this attraction might be taking the trip up there!  In order to ascend Mount Jupiter to reach the castle, you have to be transported by the Montjuïc cable car.  Step aboard the cabin of this cable car and gaze out the window as you rise above the treetops; you’ll be blown away by the miles and miles of breathtaking scenery that’s surrounding you. Learn all about how to get to Montjuïc and start planning your trip today!  

All About the Montjuïc Cable Car

There are three different stations for the Montjuïc cable car: Miramar, Parc de Montjuïc, and Castell de Montjuïc.  Your tickets for this transportation can easily be purchased online; the Montjuïc Cable Car price is about 10.80 Euros for adults (about $12.00) and 7.92 for children ages 4-12 ($8.00).  The Montjuïc cable car is open daily, with only a brief closure from late January to mid-February.

About the Montjuïc Castle in Barcelona

The Montjuïc Castle stands at about 185 yards above the port.  Although it played a role at a bleak time in the country’s history, it did serve as a solid defense during the War of Spanish Succession.  Today, you can visit this castle to view its temporary exhibits and attend fun events, like outdoor movies during the warmer months.  You won’t find better views of the area anywhere else than Montjuïc Castle in Barcelona.  You can participate in guided tours here or simply roam around its grounds.  Be sure to visit the neighboring Park Güell while you’re here as well, a famous icon of Barcelona.  This area was one of Gaudí’s finest masterpieces; you’ll love his unique use of different shapes and colors.

Come Stay with Us at bizFlats Vacation Rentals!

Make sure you stay in the best accommodations during your dream vacation to Barcelona!  bizFlats Vacation Rentals offers luxurious lofts, villas, cottages, and apartments located throughout the most picturesque parts of town to help you enjoy your exciting getaway to the fullest.  Whether you want to treat yourself to views of the beach or settle down in the heart of the city, we have the perfect spot for you!  We know you’ll love our comfortable furnishings and incredible amenities, so check our availability online right now to book your favorite vacation rental in Barcelona!  

Photo by Marianna Ceccarelli / Thinkstock

4 of the Most Fun Things to Do in Barcelona in May

4 of the Most Fun Things to Do in Barcelona in May

If you’re planning a trip to Barcelona, Spain, you’ve made an excellent choice!  This exotic city is a beautiful paradise; ancient monuments, magnificent mountains, and sunny beaches combine to create the ideal setting for the getaway of a lifetime.  The month of May is one of the best times to visit; warm, cloudless weather and numerous events offer endless possibilities for entertainment.  With the abundance of amazing activities here, you might be constantly wondering, “What should I do in Barcelona?” as you’re creating your itinerary.  Discover our list of the most fun things to do in Barcelona in May to help you plan your dream vacation today!

Some of the Best Things to Do in Barcelona in May

  1. Enjoy the Wonderful Weather

The average day in the month of May in Barcelona usually has a high temperature of approximately 70 degrees Fahrenheit with a low of about 50 degrees Fahrenheit.  These are ideal temperatures for getting outside and exploring the great outdoors!  The mountains that surround this area are filled with winding trails and towering peaks, creating the perfect environment for a thrilling day of hiking.  Montserrat and Parc de Collserola are both favorite places of both visitors and locals alike.  Don’t forget about the many beaches here as well to spend a day basking in the sun!

  1. Attend Exciting Events

There’s always something happening in Barcelona!  The Formula One Spanish Grand Prix, held at the Circuit de Catalunya in Barcelona in May, is one of the most impressive races in the world that you don’t want to miss.  The world-famous Primavera Sound music festival usually takes place during the last bit of May or first bit of June; this unbelievable annual event features a stellar lineup and amazing activities all over Barcelona.  

  1. Go to a Game

Many of the FC Barcelona matches take place during the month of May.  Come experience the amazing thrill and heart-racing action as you watch one of the most skilled teams in the world play their hardest!  It’s hard not to feel excited in the Camp Nou stadium with 100,000 dedicated fans cheering on their team to victory!

  1. Browse a Museum

Barcelona contains numerous museums, full of fascinating history and preserved artifacts, are always worth a visit!  In addition to being able to enter these museums for free every Sunday, you can also obtain free entry on May 18th, which is the International Day of Museums.  Some of these establishments also host a Night of the Museums that same day, during which you can explore from 7:00 p.m. to 1:00 a.m., one of the most fun things to do in Barcelona at night.  A few of the most famous Barcelona museums include the Museu Picasso, the Barcelona Museum of Contemporary Art, and the Fundació Joan Miró.

Come Stay with Us at bizFlats Vacation Rentals!

Make the most of your dream getaway to Barcelona by staying in the best accommodations possible!  bizFlats Vacation Rentals offers luxurious lofts, villas, cottages, and apartments located throughout the most picturesque parts of town.  Whether you want to treat yourself to views of the beach or settle down in the heart of the city, we have the perfect spot for you!  We know you’ll love our comfortable furnishings and incredible amenities, so check our availability online right now to book your favorite vacation rental in Barcelona!

Photo by moodboard / Thinkstock