I arrived in Barcelona on September 22. This is my third visit to BCN. In previous visits, I rented a room in Eixample. Eixample is a hip upscale neighborhood close to many popular tourist sites such as Gaudi's Casa Milà and Casa Batlló.
This year I'm staying in Sant Andreu. Sant Andreu de Palomar was an independent town with over 1,000 years of recorded history before being annexed by Barcelona in 1897. I'm literally steps to the local Mercado and a series of small shops including the coffee house, baker, fish store, wine shop, artisanal beer, ham iberico shop, fresh produce, cheese shop, etc.
I'm two blocks from the local Metro stop and 5-7 minute walk to the train station.
I haven't heard anyone on the street speaking English since I got here three weeks ago.
I depart BCN on October 22 for a 27 day cruise aboard Holland America's Oosterdam. Ports of call include Cadiz, Gibraltar, Malaga, Alicante, Palma de Mallorca, Toulon (France), Calvi (Corsica), Monte Carlo, Livorno, Civitavecchia, Cartagena, and Funchal.