Hey Lee and Sachi,
When I was in Barcelona my sister took me to a local family run restaurant that served a multiple servings, family style meal that was fantastic and unlike anything else I ate in Barcelona. It's called El Cargol and is somewhere in the outskirts of Barcelona (you need a car to get there). I'll update with more location info and possibly a local contact to go with when my sister gets back to me. I'd highly recommend it if you have a car.
I happened to come to your site via a link to it from a blog. and feel its a great way for you to get info from other travellers. Since you've already been to India and NewZealand, I wouldn't add entries for those. However, I do wish you would include Spain in your journeys.
I went to Spain by chance - for a conference. But decided to extend my trip and do some site seeing. My husband joined me and we went to Barcelona (this is where the conference was), Seville, Madrid and Toledo. Barcelona and Madrid are the usual big cities but each one has its own unique feature. Barcelona is loaded with Gaudi architecture while Madrid's museums just filled us with awe. But the one city I liked the most was Seville. Inspite of being a city, Seville has a small town feel. We stayed in the center - Barrillo de Santa Cruz. The biggest church of europe was pretty close by - walking distance and so was the Moorish palace - Alcazar. What we liked the most was the relaxed atmosphere. Walking through the streets of Barrillo (with orange laden trees) or taking evening "paseo" at the river, we seemed to be the only people around. Of course that could also means most localites and other tourists were taking siesta. Coz we saw a totally different scene at night. Even on a weekday, the restaurants opened at 9:30 pm (the tapas were yummy!!) and the bars started filling up only after midnight (they opened at 11 pm!). Flamenco music played in most bars, and localites showed off their flamenco dancing talent. We learnt a few steps too from a local group!
Of course you cannot leave Seville without seeing a professional flamenco performance and if Sachi is interested, trying out a flamenco dress!! Oh and how can I forget Churros! These delicious fritters dipped in chocolate were our breakfast and snacks for many a days.
I really fell in love with this city and would love to return there sometime in future. I hope you will add Seville to your itinerary.
PS: send me an email if you want a link to my Spain photos
I glimsed this gorge from the train windows over 10 years ago, and have wanted to return ever since. There is a little trail, with a platform stuck onto sheer cliff walls, that looks unbelievable unsafe and exciting.
I hope you check it out and tell us about it!