12 people found the following review helpful:
Very vibrant city, August 8, 2012
Loved the beach area
Having to be REALLY careful at all times, watching for pickpockets etc.
saw things this way
A visit to Sagrada Familia Church is a must, just for the WOW factor. Be super careful with belongings though. It's a little way out but we went by metro, easy to understand and get to. We also loved the beach area, and sat down for some sangria and tapas!! Then a quick lay on the beach and a quick dip. Allow enough time to get a taxi back to port as the traffic can get quite congested, especially on weekends.
(Review ID: 294)
34 people found the following review helpful:
Busy city with lots to see and experience, September 6, 2010
Ships dock very close to Las Ramblas and subway stations
Pick-pockets are rampant
saw things this way
We visited Barcelona on a Celebrity Summit cruise in Novemeber 2009. As usual, we were on our own...we rode the public bus to the bottom of La Ramblas then rode the metro to the area where the La Sagrada Familia is located. his church was designed by the famous Spanish architect Antoni Gaudi and is still not finished ...we did not like it...rather gaudy. We had a coffee at a sidewalk cafe where we could view the church. Still did not like it. Then we hopped back on the metro for a ride back to La Ramblas. The metro was very crowded and my wife and I got separated, as we discovered, by design. She was pick-pocketed...thank goodness, the only items in her purse were hand sanitizers and used tissues. Hopefully, he got exactly what he deserved. All important items, such as money, etc. were in a security pouch around her neck and tucked into her waist band of her jeans. There were three guys in on this...they tried to get me but they weren't successful. We were not harmed...just left a bad taste for Barcelona. After that we walked down the Ramblas, took the bus back to the pier and got back on to the ship.
(Review ID: 133)
25 people found the following review helpful:
A terrific port, stop, or stay, July 27, 2010
Reviewer: Todd Todd
A bustling city filled with a variety of opportunities
There's too much of everything. You really have to budget time and money
saw things this way
Barcelona is the Mediterranean's largest cruise port probably due to it's location, it's huge airport and the clean and convenient port facilities. Arriving passengers at the airport may be overwhelmed by the size and shopping center atmosphere. However, there is plenty of English, the layout is clear and logical. There are taxis as well as airport buses into town. Taking the subway is probably too difficult and impossible with luggage.There are hundreds of hotels since this is a major European city, the capital of the autonomous region of Catalonia. Cruise passengers, either before or after a cruise will probably want to stay in the center of town. There are hundreds of hotels of all sorts. There are also a bunch of hotels located on the "beach" of Barcelona. During the summer season these hotels would be a second choice for passengers staying in Barcelona.In town there is the usual 'hop-on hop-off" tour bus. They offer tickets for one or two days. As Barcelona is a large city it makes sense for the the first-time visitor to spend at least one day seeing the town. The buses have an open top deck. If the weather is decent this can be a very enjoyable experience. Don't miss the famous church by the architect Gaudi, Sagrada Familia. The Gothic Quarter is a Barcelona "must" with it's winding streets and unique shops and restaurants. In the Quarter is the Picasso Museum. There's also the cathedral. The strolling street, Las Ramblas,is a visual treat night and day with it's kiosks, vendors, living statues, etc. Right in the middle of Las Ramblas is the opera house and the wonderful central market. A small potted plant or some fresh flowers always add a nice touch to a cruise cabin and there are plenty of both along Las Ramblas. At the foot of Las Ramblas is a very interesting maritime museum. t's just a short stroll from the Columbus monument. The maritime museum also has a quiet cafe. But, no visit to Barcelona would be complete without a visit to some of the famous works of the Spanish architect Gaudi, besides the still unfinished church there apartment buildings, parks, and houses all over town. Just for fun you can catch the subway to a funicular (same ticket) that climbs the small mountain Montjuc near the port. After you come out of the funicular you can catch a gondola that will take you right to the top where's there's a terrific view of the port area. It's nice if you're leaving on a cruise from Barcelona to take a view of the port before you go. It makes departure day just a little less confusing. You can see the distance, the orientation, the number of ships, etc. About half way down the hill is another gondola that will take you above the port area over to the beach. Below you will see the entertainment center in the port area, the large hotels along the beach, and maybe a few mega yachts. Once at the beach there are hundreds of seafood restaurants, so maybe it's time for paella, or it's noodle cousin Fideo. In the old customs building there's another museum of history.It's a fairly short trip from any hotel by taxi to the cruise port. Don't worry the drivers know enough English to get you there. But do be prepared to tell him the cruise company, and vessel name. At the embarkation areas there are porters to help with luggage. There are also shops selling alcohol. Depending on your cruise line policies you might want to pick something up last minute. And, the same goes for sodas.The surrounding area has plenty of day trips, either before or after a cruise.