Welcome back to the Barcelona Blog.
Day Three and sadly it’s our final full day in the beautiful Spanish sunshine, however we do get a good amount of Barcelona time before catching the flight home to you all in England.
Once again, EVERY child had to be woken up this morning, there were no nonsensical stories of early rising times. We all needed the sleep last night after an exhausting day yesterday and a day to come full of energy-zapping travelling and activities. So to start the day once again we took full advantage of the buffet breakfast and drank all the juice available to us.
Slightly different first activity of this morning was to write a shopping list and practise our basic Spanish phrases to prepare ourselves for the market later in the day. However, our first stop on the Wednesday edition of the Barcelona tour was the remarkably beautiful church Santa Maria Del Mar.
This ancient yet pristinely maintained building is often a favourite on our tour, as it gives the children the opportunity to sit and have time with their thoughts within a peaceful tranquility. Remarkably, the noise and hustle and bustle of Barcelona is left at the door as silence befalls all those who enter the church’s doors. I have to say how immensely proud I am of all your children for perfectly respecting the silence and understanding that this is an active place of worship and such an important building to so many in the local area – well done Class 6 so impressive!
Following on from our holy start, we ventured further into the heart of Barcelona for our most exciting challenge of the week – the Spanish market: Santa Caterina. We split off into 5 groups with the challenge of purchasing enough food for our lunch that day. Seniora Hayes has been teaching this class for several years, although recently we’ve had a Barcelona focus and it certainly paid off. Every single child asked for something, questioned the price of individual items or the total, told the traders how many slices or grams or bunches they would like and of course lots of pleases and thank yous. In fact, they were so good that some children were rewarded with free meats and cheeses from the stall holders. After saying I was proud for the group after the church, there are no superlatives to justify their “performance” st the market – the food choice were impressive too, lots of fresh fruit on show.
Packing up the food in our bags, we meandered even further into the heart of Barcelona to eat our market bought ingredients in the sunshine and shade. We settled upon a park to rest our weary legs and devour our purchases. En route to our perfect picnic spot, we passed the most beautiful gardens and trees. Although the most eye-catching monument was a giant golden water fountain cascading through the park. We have photographic evidence, just once again a technical issue is preventing that currently.
Following on with a full belly, we returned to the Picasso museum (that we had passed earlier in the day) to gain cultural knowledge of the famous artist. Mrs. Silvester and I have had this tour three years on the trot and we still have seen new pieces of artwork and learnt new information, so ask your children about Picasso and you may even become educated on the great man yourself!
Finally, we made our way to the Telefonica up to the castle at Montjuic. This our chance to soak up the views and map where we have travelled across the city. The most obvious site is Sagrada Familia which stands high above the rest of the Barcelona skyline. The children enjoyed basking in the glorious sunshine as we wandered round the grounds and various levels of the castle. After stopping on the way back down the Telefonica for an ice lolly, we journeyed back to Hotel Canton for the final time. Here we all enjoyed a large bowl of pasta and later played various Barcelona trip games and learnt some new interesting facts about our classmates thanks to a question game created by Mrs.Quirk.
Our last night in Barcelona was filled with fun, giggles and games before all children sensibly made their way to bed. Unbelievably some have already packed! The rest of us will pack tomorrow morning, before we head out for shopping and hopefully churros somehwere in the last few hours of Barcelona sunshine. We’re all looking forward to seeing you tomorrow, as I’m sure you’re looking forward to seeing us too.
One of Mrs. Quirk’s questions was “What will be the first thing you do when you’re home from barcelona?” Answers ranged from “I don’t know, I haven’t thought about home yet.” all
the way to “I’ll give my parents a big hug and tell them about everything!” Although some of us simply wrote “rest” or “sleep”, all the answers were spot on as all will need to be completed and we’re excited to do so!
Pictures will hopefully follow tomorrow!
Pictures of the day..
Hello again from even sunnier Spain!
Day Two of the Barcelona vacation and as I correctly predicted every single bedroom had to be woken up this morning after an incredibly deep and well-needed sleep. As teachers, we are very grateful with how easily they went to bed and went to sleep almost instantly.
As ever there are stories of how children just couldn’t get to sleep until midnight…….which is interesting as they were all fast asleep by 11pm when I checked in on them. Worryingly, some could give me a run for my money in the snoring department!
On to today’s adventure and we started by devouring a buffet continental breakfast. Cereal, croissants, hams, cheese, yoghurts, toast and fruit were all willingly eaten, whilst being washed down with various juices (and slurped milk from the cereal bowls).
Departing relatively early, we hopped on the metro travelling 2 stops, hopping off and on to a new line for a further 4 stops and we arrived at Sagrada. Exiting the station we were greeted by the truly breath-taking sight of Sagrada Familia, some of us were well and truly shocked to discover that this was only the back of the famous building and we were yet to see the incredible architecture of the front. As we had travelled so efficiently (other than Mrs. Gillhouley intially forgetting her group’s metro tickets – shocking) we had time to play and stretch our legs in the play park opposite the wonderful structure. Swinging, sliding and swaying completed in the park, we ventured to the beautiful construction for our headphone automated guided tour.
The story of the planning, designing, building and overall purpose of Sagrada Familia was inspiring to our many artistic members of the group, however, no moment compares to the instant awe and wonder achieved by entering the Sagrada Familia. Sky-high pillars, intricate details in every carefully planned decoration, all covered in beautiful coloured light from the monumental stained glass windows. The children in my group all agreed they had never seen anything quite so spectacular and I’m sure the entire group would agree.
As we reached the end of our tour, we were joined by a familiar face in Alfie. Really brilliant to have Alfie with us and great efforts from himself and his mum to get him out here to join the group, I’m sure they’ll both sleep very well tonight indeed!
Back from Sagrada to the hotel and we were on a mission to pack our bags ready for our beach trip, fill up our water bottles to keep hydrated in the heat and most importantly top up our suncream levels. All whilst Mrs.Silvester and Seniora Hayes collected our ordered baguettes for lunch – yet another delicious Spanish delicacy: the bocadillo.
After munching our way through lunch, we commenced our long haul walk to the beach. Mrs. Gillhouley’s FitBit buzzed on the way to the beach, so you can begin to imagine how many steps we’ve completed in the entirety of the day! Finally arriving at the beach we were greeted by picturesque sand space to run around in, throw volleyballs, play football and of course dig really big holes.
Several hours were spent on the beach in glorious sunshine, before packing up and heading back for the night. Along the way we stopped for more ice cream – they were just as delicious at the marina, if not more so! They seemed to make the journey back to the hostel far quicker too – the magic of ice cream.
Back at the hostel we removed half the beach from our feet, showered the sun cream off and changed in to fresh clothes for pizza night! Huge slices of pizza for us all, in fact so much pizza that we’ve managed to save some for our market lunch tomorrow. Mrs.Clark very wisely suggests it shouldn’t be kept in my fridge, as we may have significantly less pizza than we started with.
As I’ve sat and typed this blog post, the children have headed up to rooms, changed in to their pyjamas, cleaned their teeth and the majority have already fallen asleep. By the time this blog is actually posted I’m sure all of them will be asleep – the magic of long walks is far greater to teachers than the magic of ice cream.
Tomorrow we are off to the market for our Spanish speaking task to collect the food for lunch, we later head to the Picasso museum and finally we finish the day with the Telefonica to Montjuic. Busy day ahead!
Once again, pictures are an issue to post out here and we may have to wait for Mrs.Platt to add tomorrow morning. Sorry!
Mr Still just sent this picture from the Beach in Barcelona..
Good morning all, Mrs Gillhouley has sent me some breakfast pictures from the hotel..
She reports that all slept well, and they’re off to Sagrada Familia this morning.
Hello from a very sunny Spain!
We saw a lot of you bright and early this morning at Gatwick North and I can assure you we have not stopped since!
First of all, unfortunately we are one man down in Alfie who was sick Sunday night. We are all missing him and wish him a speedy recovery and there is potential he may join us later in the trip – of which we would all love to see.
For the rest of us jet setters, we waited for our delayed flight very excited and anticipating the vacation to come. When the gate was finally announced and the flight boarded we were all raring to go, and brilliantly the flight was quicker than expected so we were in Barcelona only 20/30 mins later than initially intended.
After travelling on a train and hopping on and off several metro stations, we finally made it to our final destination of Lisou. A short walk later and we arrived at Plaza Real, where we stopped for our mega lunch in a beautifully shady spot – soaking up the atmosphere and ambience of Barcelona.
However, the most exciting part of the day was yet to come. Forget flying. Forget foreign lands. Forget beautiful sunshine. No. The most exciting news was FINALLY discovering our room allocation for the three nights. I can assure you we were very happy with the selections and loved unpacking with our new roomies in the free time given in the hostel.
Putting on our evening attire and washing off the layer of travel grease we had accumulated, we congregated at the reception area ready to head out for our tapas night. At which point, after reminding the children to be careful with their room keys (several rooms already having locked themselves out and having to ask for the spare at the reception desk) it was actually Mrs.Clark and Mrs.Silvester who made the walk of shame to the front desk – I’m not sure who was to blame, you’ll have to ask them yourselves on our return.
On to Tapas Night and we were finally presented the opportunity to try our Spanish lingo and taste the Spanish foods Seniora Hayes has been teaching us about for months. I have to say everyone tried the food which was really impressive to see. Some may have tried slightly less than others, but we all at least tried which is a huge part of this trip: endulging in Spanish culture! Afterwards, we were able to spend our hard-earned ice cream money at the parlour across the road – Spanish ice cream on the streets of Barcelona, doesn’t get better than that!
Finally, back to the hostel. A quick game of Spanish Cluedo (It was Mrs.Clark in Sagrada Familia with the pencil sharpener if you were wondering), a chat about the bedtime and breakfast routine and off to bed we went. I can assure you everyone is ready for bed, a truly monumental day and it’s only day one.
Tomorrow brings Sagrada Familia, the beach and pizza night. Sun cream, water bottles and sun hats at the ready as the temperature is set to reach 24/25 degrees – beautiful!
Pictures will follow when I can upload them via the frustratingly slow wifi.
Packed Lunch in Plaza Real..
I’ve just heard from Mr Still, that they’ve arrived and are en-route to the hotel.