Hola Barcelona

After our successful adventure in Dublin for St. Patrick's, I hopped on a RyanAir flight down to the Iberian Peninsula. Catalunya was going to be my home for the next two weeks. I was particularly looking forward to Barcelona because it's the first time I've been able to stay put for more than 6 days at a time for the last 3 months. This time, I get 13 days before moving on! For my first several days here, I ran around like a crazy person once more to make sure everything was in line for our upcoming tour. This was going to be the first Barcelona tour ever for WSA, and we had two sold out weekends coming up: 22 for the first tour, and 28 for the second! The demand for this city is incredible, and rightfuly so.

I lined up our walking tour for Friday to take us through the magnificent Block of Discord, and the unbelievable Sagrada Familia. Each time I go into that structure I find something else to be blown away by. I'm really looking forward to the completion date which is said to be in 2029, the 100th year anniversary of Gaudi's death. No one actually knows if we're on pace for the completion. As the architect himself always said "My client doesn't operate on a timeline".

For Saturday, we explored the brilliant las Ramblas and went on a cultural scavenger hunt through the lively Boqueria Market--incredible. I then took everyone on a stroll into the Barri Gotic which is packed by little boutique shops and restaurants. I'm not a soap guy, but I found this wonderful saponeria where they actually make the soap in house, so I was sure to bring my group there. They have all flavors from Cafe to Melon. That night, I took my group on a Tapas crawl where we visited one of the most quintessential student tapas bars in Barcelona. We followed that with a visit to a more modern tapas place packed with locals. After a stop at Amorino--possibly the best gelato chain on earth--we caught a Flamenco show. I went in skeptical and left amazed. The restless leg syndrom on the guy alone has to be a world record, let alone when he's actually concentrating on stomping his feet!

The next morning we attemped to catch a glimpse of the traditional Saradana dances but to no avail. No one was doing the dances in front of their usual spot at the cathedral. Maybe next time! All in all, it was an incredible weekend! Thanks everyone!


Cheyenne Hodur, Drake University

Happy Backpackers

Bogi is a great guide. She was everything you could want in a guide plus more. She was fun, cool, and the best part- knowledgeable. She really made the trip great. We got to the hostel late and she was able to rearrange our schedule so everyone could go caving. After caving we were picked up by Bogi (thank goodness because figuring out Hungarian public transportation is really hard if you don't speak Hungarian). WSA made sure to include super cool things- caving, thermal baths, bus tickets, escape games and the hostel. I would definitely do this trip again. Bogi was fun and flexible, we didn't have to stick to a tight schedule and we were able to do things that we wanted to do like the Liberty Statue. She is great, WSA is lucky to have her.

Cheyenne Hodur, Drake University ~ AIFS Richmond, Spring 2015

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