Barcelona Skyline

Friday, 3 December 2010

Great winter in Barcelona

Beside the good weather we have in Barcelona even in winter (when compared to northern European cities), there are a lot of thing which make the Catalon capital atractive in December. Some of them are:

Fira de Santa Llucia (Saint Lucia fair)

Every year Barcelona gets revved up for Christmas with its traditional Fira de Santa Llucia, the oldest of local Christmas fairs. It all takes place in and around the Cathedral Square a brisk 15-minute walk from the hotel through the festive Barri Gotic.

Three things are featured: Christmas trees of all sizes; traditional ceramics with Christmas themes; and finally manger scenes with "canager" (means"the shitter" and it's just like it sound) and "cagatios" (a small log of wood about a foot long. Before Christmas children paint a face on the log and give it a blanket to keep it warm. Then they feed him copiously for several days. Then on Christmas the children beat their uncle with sticks and sing "caga, log" which means something like "shit, log, shit" and the cagatio defecates presents for the children). Both figures show the very particular way of catalan people to celebrate de Christmas.

Christmas shoping

In Barcelona, you don't have to choose between going shopping or sightseeing. Wherever you go, you'll see that shops are part of city life. And while you discover unforgettable sights, you'll be welcomed by the window displays of leading international brands, modern designer shops and traditional shops that have been there since time immemorial. Some of them:

Corbateria Vendrell & Associats: Anyone who thinks that a tie is an unoriginall gift, is because doesn't know this store. They are specialized in "dreess" necks with exlusives designes for ties, pashminas, scarves, foulards, etc.

Sombrebreria Obach: Put it to your head: a hat is a very elegant and original complement. And in this store you will find a lot of them: for men, women, summer, winter. If you don't wear hats, maybe after visit this place you will begin to do it. (Call street, 2).

Ganiveteria Roca: can you imagine a store full of knives and scissors? Maybe it sounds strange (or creepy) but when you get in this place, everythings change. A very tipical store where you will find that knive you was looking for your kitchen; or maybe a special gift for a friend.

Palacio del juguete: even if you are not a child anymore, surely you will enjoy visting this store. In there you will find not only the newest toys in the market, they offer also clasics made of wood and iron, toy soldiers, etc.

La Manual Alpargatera: The Pope John Paul II bought there his "alpargatas", o so they say. Nowadays La Manual is a must for the informed travellers who visit our city. Many international prizes, highly favourable comments have appeared in prestigious magazines and the visit of personalities from all around the world guarantee our experience.
The espadrille is an ecological light shoe made with natural materials: vegetable fiber. It is a footwear with a very long tradition

Greet new year in our city

Barcelona offers a full range of options for saying “out with the old and in with the new.” If you feel like an evening out of doors you have the area around the Torre Agbar. This bullet-shaped tower, the last word in architectural modernity, has aroused quite a polemic and inspired not a few jokes due to its form which to many is reminiscent of a giant…well check out the photo and judge for yourself. And on New Year´s Eve there is a full sound and light show.
The Plaça Catalunya and the area around the Cathedral are more traditional places to gather, sing, shout and eat the twelve “uvas de la suerte”. You traditionally gulp down one grape with each of the twelve bells of midnight. If you get all twelve down in the allotted time you will have good luck for all twelve months. Eleven grapes, eleven months, and so on. And all is washed down with copious quantities of cava (Spanish champagne). The atmosphere is very “animado”: warm, friendly, and a bit raucus. Or you can go to “El poble espanyol”, an open-air space with reproductions of iconic Spanish buildings, restaurants, bars of all kinds, and a huge party in la Plaza Central.
For those who prefer a quiet dinner most of Barcelona´s best restaurants such as old favorites Can Culleretes and Els Quatre Gats offer special menus which traditionally include two courses, various wines and cava as well as the usual New Year´s paraphernalia: paper hats, comfetti…
But for Catalans midnight is just the start of New Year´s Eve. The discos and bars are open all night long full of those wanting to keep the party going.

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