Our week in Palma Mallorca!

Hello again, this time from Lisbon, Portugal!  This post is a quick recap of our week in Palma, aka, the last week with Henry and LuAnn joining us.

Flying out of Barcelona on Sunday, we needed to swing by the hotel Henry and Lu would be staying at on their way home to store mom’s larger suitcase she wouldn’t need while in Palma.   Giving ourselves plenty of time for everything, we ended up at the airport with a few hours to spare.   Using my priority pass that came with the Chase Sapphire card, I was able to get us all into one of the Airport lounges.   After a few drinks and snack we head down to the gate for our flight.   Unfortunately, checking the screen for our gate number we see our flight is cancelled.   Being used to US airlines we were expecting a long ordeal but a quick trip to the customer service agent had us all on the next flight out in 2 hours and a coupon to go grab a drink and a snack at any bar/restaurant we wanted.

We finally arrived in Palma that evening and checked into our AirBnb which was right off of Plaza Mayor.   Perfect location for our week!   Sunday night we all were in the mood for pizza and so ended our first night at an Italian restaurant.

Monday we had dinner plans with Chrissy’s cousin Melissa and her husband Thomas who live in Palma.   During the day we wondered around town, hit the supermarket for breakfast foods, snacks, and wine, and also checked out a great little craft beer store where we stocked up with Spanish craft beers.

That night we met with Melissa and Thomas and had a excellent meal with them.   They gave us great advice at what to do.

On Tuesday, the weather was not cooperating as it was very rainy.  With sunshine expected the rest of the week, we decided to make this a stay in our neighborhood day.   For lunch, we took a recommendation from Thomas, for burgers at Badal.    I am a self-professed burger snob but these burgers would fit right in my top 10 burgers.

After our late lunch we hung out in Plaza Mayor.   This area always had a lot of activity and pop up shops and street performers.  The rest of the night was relaxation and a few drinks.

The next day was sunny again so we decided to check out the hop-on hop-off bus since we enjoyed in Barcelona so much.   Unfortunately, this one was not very good besides giving us transportation up to Bellver Castle.   This is a very interesting castle with a cool history of being used as a stronghold and even a prison at different times.   Great views from the top as well.

We then took the bus to the main cathedral in town and discovered a local beer festival on a plaza near the water.

We got to try beers from all over Palma and the weather was just perfect.   It turned out to be a great day!

The next day, Thursday, another recommendation from Melissa and Thomas, the historic train to Soller and the Port of Soller.

The port is absolutely beautiful.   We wondered around checking out the various beaches, boats, and scenery.

We ended up having lunch at an awesome seafood restaurant, Kingfisher.   Everyone from our tuna, to shrimp, to whole fish, was just perfect.

Was an awesome day getting to see the other side of the island!

The next day was very bitter sweet for us as in past years we would have been in Louisville for the Kentucky Oaks.   So of course, when we heard that Palma has harness racing that Friday, we had to go.

While this was not the same as being in Louisville, we ended up having a great time.   One good thing is a round of drinks for the 4 of us basically cost us about 1/3 of a cost of a Lilly at Churchill Downs.   Henry actually ended up cashing a winning ticket on a 12-1 shot which covered out taxi rides and drinks!

In the late afternoon we ended up at a sports bar in Palma, Bar 11 and had some delicious food and drinks.    That night we just went back to our AirBnb and ended up watching the Kentucky Oaks on my laptop around midnight.

Saturday ended up being another raining day for us so we caught up on laundry and relaxed.   We did have an great tapas lunch at Bar Espana.  We basically tried almost everything on their menu.

Saturday night was the Kentucky Derby, so again we fired up the tablet and the laptop and bet the races from our AirBnb.   Henry and I did end up taking a break though and finally got him a gin and tonic.

All over Spain people were advertising Gin and Tonics and we learned it is a drink craze over most of western Europe.

Sunday was our last full day in Palma so we went for a walk to explore the City some more.   That night, we joined up with Melissa and Thomas again for yet another wonderful meal.   We ended up eating, drinking, and chatting for almost 5 hours.   It was a great way to end our time in Palma.

The next morning we took off for the Airport and had to say goodbye to Henry and Luann who were starting their trip back to the US.   We were flying into our next City, a quick 3 night stay in Madrid!   Promise to get that part of the trip up quicker on this blog then this one 🙂

Barcelona in Review

Hello from our last day here in Palma de Mallorca. Sorry blogging as been lacking but hopefully we can catch up today and our travel day to Madrid tomorrow.

We did post about our amazing first day in Barcelona, so here is the recap of our next 6 days there!

Day 2 we decided to try to hop-on, hop-off sightseeing bus to give us an overview of the City.

This turned into an all day adventure with two different bus routes.   One cool thing about this Monday is that is was a holiday in Catalonia, Diada de Sant Jordi.   It is tradition to give roses and books to ones your love this day, so the entire City was filled with flower and book vendors everywhere.

Once we reached a super busy downtown-ish area, we stopped for a bottle of wine and a few tapas.   Everywhere we went in Barcelona had amazing food, from tiny hole in the walls to fancier places everything was so tasty!

After our quick drink and bite, back on the bus.  We took it everywhere in the City, stopping off every now and then.   We hit the mountain by the sea in Barcelona and took an awesome cable car to the top.

After our round trip up the mountain, we continued on our bus.   We did see all the major sites in one day and it really helped us plan the rest of our week so highly recommend the City Sightseeing bus in Barcelona.

That night we met us with some new friends from the Cruise, Craig and Jane, for drinks and dinner.   First a great beer bar, El Tap, that reminded me of home with the chalk board beer list.

Dinner was at a great Steak house with our new friends.   Wonderful meal and wine there too.

The next day, Tuesday, was finally a rest and relaxation day.   We visited the neighborhood grocery store and just explored more of our immediate area.   Wine at the grocery store is very cheap for pretty good wine.

Wednesday was our scheduled day to visit the Sagruda Familia, Antoni Gaudi’s super impressive church.   This was one of the most amazing buildings we have ever seen.   If you get a chance to visit, go for the ticket that also gives you access to one of the towers.   It was worth every euro we spent.   You can just buy tickets directly from the church’s website, there is no need for “skip the line” tours offered by other companies.    I’ll just show a few pictures to give you an idea but if you are ever in Barcelona, go!  Our pictures cannot do it justice.   (Yes, it is still under construction, scheduled to be finished by 2026)

Thursday was Chrissy’s and I’s schedule first super fancy, 3 Michelin Star, dinner at El Celler de Can Roca.   The restaurant is in a town about an hour north of Barcelona called Girona.    We took a high speed train from Barcelona directly to Girona.

Game of Thrones fans would recognize the old downtown area as Bravvos from the TV Show.   The town also has a church that was used at the Sept from Game of Thrones as well.

I’ll try to do a separate post going to in to details on our dinner later but in short it was one of the best dining experiences we have had.

Friday we took the train back to Barcelona and rejoined Henry and Luann.   This day we had tickets to go see Park Guell, a Guadi designed park.   The weather again was perfect and we had a great time exploring the park.   If you decide to go, I recommend buying tickets to see the Monument Park in advance as that  is where everything you see in photos of the park is.    The park sells out a lot of days as well.

Saturday, our last full day in Barcelona, we spent in the Gothic Quarter part of town.   The main feature here is the huge Gothic Cathedral.  There is also a huge, awesome market a few blocks away from the Cathedral.   We spent quite a bit of time walking around the market and then settled in at Bar Joan, a very busy tapas bar in the market.

After our normal mid day drink and food break, we continued walking down to the Arc de Triomf.   On a sunny weekend day, this area was packed with people, pop-up shops, and street performers.  Fun day to end our stay in Barcelona.

That night was dinner at a Steak house a block away from our AirBnb and like all our meals was fantastic.

The next morning we packed up and headed to the Airport to fly to Palma de Mallorca!

Barcelona was a great city to start our trip, we really loved the City, the food, the people, and the sites.   Definitely want to return one day.