Spanish idle

Perhaps my favourite pastime of all, irrespective of city, town or village, is to amble in the streets, find a leafy square, sit with a drink, and watch the world going by.

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In Barcelona, there is no shortage of spots to satisfy these simple pleasures. While there over the weekend, I think the highlight for me, apart from the Sagrada Familia, was finding the Placa Real, where we enjoyed a drinks break each day.

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On the first occasion we stopped for a drink not long after arriving by train at the larger central Placa Catalunya. It was hot, and the Placa Real was a perfect spot to cool off after a short walk.

On the Sunday we deliberately sought out the square again for a lunch stop on Spanish time – at 3pm. By that time we were well and truly hungry and enjoyed the tapas (omelette, calamares, croquettes, chorizo, patatas bravas) washed down with beer and lemonade. Personally I would have been happy to linger there all afternoon, and I’m sure the boys would have been happy to continue eating tapas.

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When visiting as a tourist in Spain, you soon discover that there are tapas, and then there are tapas. Having been fortunate to enjoy the tapas in Placa Real, we found the more touristy tapas ‘menu’ in Figueres substandard in comparison. Needs must when it’s raining though.

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