What follows is our review of our holiday to Spain including Sitges, Barcelona & Madrid. We had 10 nights which also included Gay Pride 2017 & a day trip to Barcelona. Now it should go without saying that you need more than a single day to enjoy Barcelona, in fact you`d be hard pushed to take everything in within a mouth, so our day trip from Sitges is just a snap shoot. Please add your comments below, have you been there?, what do you think?
Note that the Madid trip takes place later this year, a review will follow asap.
Departure [including flight & arrival at Barcelona]
Departure was at 06.40 which meant a book in time from 04.00 We had pre booked car parking at the airport. One thing that became apparent was that I had made a mistake with regard to my carryon bag, it was the right size but not the correct type as it was heavy to carry at 10kg.Birmingham airport was very busy and we was lucky to get a seat to have breakfast. Check in went fairly easy, none of the problems that we had expected with the medications etc. The flight departed late but made up time as we arrived at Barcelona a few minutes early. Going through customs was not a problem.
Getting The Train
There is quiet a walk to the station from the airport not helped by ongoing redevelopment works. Getting the train tickets was easy and also cheap at just over 2 euros. The train was packed and this is where we had our first cliché in that we had to change trains at the first station, however Mark managed to get of but John was a little slow and this meant that the train doors closed and so we missed getting of leaving Mark looking bemused. This meant we had to get of at the next station, which was almost deselected[name]cross over to the other side and back to where Mark was waiting. Now I would add that getting the train is all well and good if you are fit & well, and able to carry the luggage, otherwise its better to pre book transfers.
Arrival At Sitges
On arrival and entering the square it brought back great memories of our last time in Sitges but many years ago. It seemed that time had stood still, however we did not look round as we got a taxi to the Playa Golf Hotel to collect our keys for the apartments.
Collecting The Keys
This turned out to be a very long winded process, yes we were 2 hours ahead of time, or so we thought [we had assumed a booking in time of 14.00 but it turned out to be 16:00]. So we had a long wait. Hotel staff took care of our luggage while we waited. There was a restaurant open but after that we just sat in the reception area. Staff said that they would call us when the keys were ready, but this failed to happen. So after around 15:00 we began to see more people arriving to collect keys but no news on hours, so by around 15.45 we decided we had enough of waiting and then we were told the keys were now ready.
Others issues relating to the keys were that we were only to be given one set despite there being three of us. We had to pay deposits on the two extra sets at 30 euros each. Further to this was that we found that one set had an extra key, this turned out to be the safe key and had we not asked for the extra sets we would not have had the safe key at all. Then to round things of and having ordered the taxi the hotel porter could not be found and it took ages to get our luggage.
Apartment Location [General]
Ideal for those that like it quiet and relaxing as there is hardly any road noise while we were there.
Location To Town
By car less than 5 minute, walking around 15minutes for those who are fit.
Location To Beach
Around a couple of minutes by car, about 10 minutes for those fit guys.
Day 1 Overall Impressions
Starting with a 4am check in the day turned into a long one when taking the key collection into account, but overall it felt very good to be in Spain at last.
Sitges Town Impressions
Fantastic male art shop showing lots of expensive explicit on open show, something we doubt be allowed back in the UK. Great to see such openness.
It felt like stepping back into a time warp as it has hardly changed at all. The old town was as charming as ever and the gay village was as almost as we left it many years ago. Shop prices were not too bad however the drinks prices were a total rip of, all part of it being gay pride week.
Weather For Whole Stay
Day 1 was over cast but otherwise the temps were in the mid-30s so ideal for us.
Barcelona Day Trip [including cable car]
We set of late from Sitges due to 2 of our group getting up late due to being out late the night before. We arrived around 10am right outside the Gaudi temple to find the place packed out to the rim. Having found the entrance ticket office we were told that the place was sold out for that day, however after some discussion the staff stated that 2 of us could go in for free due to disability but the 3rd could not, so this would have meant that one would be alone for most of the day. We decided that this was unfair to him, despite him being the main cause of the delay getting to Barcelona.
We decided to take a tour bus ride across the city so that we could get to the cable car ride. We sat on the top of the bus and it was very windy almost freezing due to the day being overcast. When walking around it was much warmer!!
It took around 1½ hours to get to the coastal beach / port area. From where the bus dropped us of it was a long walk to get to the cable car. However we did get to see the harbour with all the big yachts etc. and it was really pleasant area with bars and shops.
The cable car ride cost 15 euros each for a return trip. The ride took us over the port area to the side of the mountain [can’t remember the name]. There were some really pleasant gardens and the views across the city were fantastic. There is another cable car that takes you up the mountain but as it was already tea time we decided to give it a miss. [Maybe next time?] We caught the bus back to the Gaudi temple [another 1½ hours] to the Gaudi temple in order to get the Metro and then the train back to Sitges. There is so much to see in this wonderful city that you need a good holiday in the city to enjoy it in the fullest extent.
Prices In General
Prices in Sitges for almost all foods and drinks were very expensive. We put this down to being high season along with also being pride week.
Food In General [eating out]
Compared to the UK these were very expensive. What could be considered fast food is normally Hamburgers and most café type shops sold these along with some restaurant’s which price items individually which made eating out expensive. A chicken meal started at around 8 euros for half a chicken then you add items such as chips, breads, drinks etc, so to expect to pay from 17-22 euros.
A standalone hamburger started at around 5 euros upwards.