Saturday, April 6, 2019
I’m trying to play catch up with my blog. I know this is dated but I wanted to post it.
Here I am back in Barcelona. I think this is my third or fourth time. I arrived on May 13 after a 26 day cruise aboard Royal Caribbean's, Brilliance of the Seas. We left Tampa, Florida on April 17th and made stops in Puerto Rico, Ponta Delgada (Azores), Malaga, and Ibitha. We arrived in Barcelona on May 1 and I stayed onboard for another 12 day cruise of the Mediterranean with stops in Livorno, Civitavecchia, Salerno, Venice, Ravenna, and Kotor, Montenegro.
I've rented a room in the Sant Antoni neighborhood of E'xample.
"The Eixample is characterized by long straight streets, a strict grid pattern crossed by wide avenues, and square blocks with chamfered corners (named illes in Catalan, manzanas in Spanish). This was a visionary, pioneering design by Ildefons Cerdà, who considered traffic and transport along with sunlight and ventilation in coming up with his characteristic octagonal blocks, where the streets broaden at every intersection making for greater visibility, better ventilation and (today) some short-stay parking space. The grid pattern remains as a hallmark of Barcelona, but many of his other provisions were ignored: the four sides of the blocks and the inner space were built instead of the planned two or three sides around a garden; the streets were narrower; only one of the two diagonal avenues was carried out; the inhabitants were of a higher class than the mixed composition dreamed of by Cerdà. The important needs of the inhabitants were incorporated into his plan, which called for markets, schools, hospitals every so many blocks. Today, most of the markets remain open in the spots they have been from the beginning."
I've stayed in this area on previous visits. I like the wide tree lined sidewalks. The neighborhood is full of small bars, restaurants, coffee shops, and bakeries.