Day 73: Last day in SpainApril 29, 2017 in Spain
Hard to believe that after 72 days and 7000 kilometres of driving, today would be our last day in Spain. From that first, frazzled, jetlagged day in Madrid where we wandered fairly aimlessly still coming to terms with being in a cold European spring with our dog in tow, to now where we've embarked on a ridiculously optimistic journey. But first - more world heritage sites!
We still had a few more to tick off, since the works of Gaudi entry on the list covers seven separate buildings. And we'd decided that even though La Sagrada Familia was the most important and well-known, we couldn't just leave it at that. A pair of houses Gaudi had designed were just near our apartment (well 10 minutes walk anyway), so we headed there first.
Both were very touristy spots but still impressive. The first house, Casa Milla, was one that we'd actually visited in the rain on our first day, and now with bright sunshine it looked far more impressive and interesting. Shaped like a quarry, no internal load-bearing walls, and a revolutionary (for 1906) underground parking garage!
The second house, Casa Battlo, was vaguely styled after the story of Saint George slaying the dragon. The front of the house had balconies and arches vaguely reminiscent of a dragon's jaws, a long tall central roof inspired by a serpent tail, and then a tower/pinnacle topped with the cross of St George, inspired by the lance he used to slay the dragon. Well, in the story anyway. Again very crowded and touristy, but looking good in the sunshine.
Next was a long walk the opposite direction to a cafe we'd been recommended. It was typically a brunch cafe, but brunch in Spain happens any time between midday and 4pm, so given it was just after 12 we tucked in. I had a mushroom and spinach omelette, while Shandos had a salad.
Last stop on the world heritage tour was Park Guell, a park partially designed by Gaudi in the hillier northern suburbs of Barcelona. It was originally conceived as a gated community for rich people, but only a couple of the plots had houses built, and after Gaudi and the financier died the area became a public park. Most of his landscaping and utility buildings are still there though, with the typical undulating surfaces, tiling and other similar flourishes. Very beautiful, and we spent a good couple of hours enjoying the sun and warmth. Schnitzel was a big attraction here, lots of attention and pats!
Back to our apartment where we relaxed a couple of hours, before heading back out for dinner. Decided we had to have something Spanish for our last night in Spain, so ended up at a vermouth bar where we had a couple of vermouths and some tapas - beef cheek, hildas, cheese, and a couple of other things.
Final stop was another craft beer bar, where I tried a mushroom beer. Very odd, not the greatest thing I've ever tasted! A mixture between mushroom risotto, liquid smoke and beer. Strange, not something I'd try again. Back to the apartment for a bit of packing and an early-ish night, as we were both feeling nervous about the long day of travel tomorrow. Particularly Schnitzel's first ride in a plane cabin!Read more