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The Westcoast Connection Blog

Life Changing Experiences

Riding Through the Mediterranean Breeze – Barcelona PCE

Riding Through the Mediterranean Breeze - Barcelona PCE 5

PCE Barcelona catches us up!

Dear Parents of PCE Barcelona #80 – Hola!

We are well into our second week in beautiful Barcelona. The group has settled in fantastically and we are enjoying every minute of our adventures here in Spain. We spent our first weekend in Barcelona exploring more of the city and  bonding as a group!

We kicked things off on Saturday with a trip to Figueres, the small town outside of Barcelona where Salvador Dali lived. We spent a few hours in the Dali museum, fascinated by his unique and bizarre artistic influence on Spanish culture and the larger global art community. Then off to Girona, a Medieval town on the way back to Barcelona, where we got caught in a rain storm, but still managed to enjoy the beautiful riverside landscape and pose for pictures on the city’s famous bridges.

No Rain

No Rain

Staying Dry

Staying Dry

Wacky Crew

Wacky Crew

Ellie, Justin, Rosie, Jen and Ben captured some gorgeous shots from the city’s hillside, while Alana, Stacy, Sara checked out the cute little boutiques scattered around the cobblestone streets in the center of town. We enjoyed some fabulous Italian inspired cuisine at a local restaurant for dinner before heading back to Barcelona after a long day of  sight-seeing. Although we were tired, we welcomed an early Sunday morning to travel the city by bike! The bike tour
started off in the Barrio Gothic (Gothic Quarter) which we had been given an amazing tour of on Friday night, so the kids knew what to expect while we made our way through the windy and narrow streets.  We had our first glimpse of the beautiful Barcelona beaches as we rode our way down the boardwalk in the Barcelona sun.   The students were thrilled to ride through the Mediterranean breeze! Cale, Jared and Matt kept up in the front of the pack while Amanda, Deni and Harrison kept  Natasha and Jess company at the back of the group. I guess we fooled some of the local Barcelonans because they yelled ¨Tour de Francia¨ as we rode by on more than one occasion! We snapped a quick group picture as we rode through Parc Cituadella in front of one of the many incredible Spanish fountains located around the city.

After we re-energized with a bite for lunch, we made our way down to the beach to cool down in the ocean and relax in the sun, or ¨tomar al sol¨ as the Spanish would say. Dylan, Austin and Mike buried each other in the sand, while Pauline, Lisa, Emma and Steph relaxed on the beach. We took many trips back to the water to balance the incredible heat we endured on land! We capped things off with a piquante Mexican dinner at a local place by the residence, and were happy to get to bed after a long day in the Barcelona sun.

On Monday, we were back to classes to work on our Espanol! The Spanish culture class enjoyed a trip to Pueblo Espanol to discover more about Spain’s various forms of architecture over the last few centuries. Carly and Micky managed to learn enough about this historical site by impressing the Spanish culture teacher with important facts about the venue that even she herself didn’t know! Monday night, the group went over to the local health club by the residence and played games in the gigantic pool for a few hours, following Christin’s suggestion of ¨sharks and  minnows!”

Tough Guys

Tough Guys

On Tuesday, we made it to Gaudi’s famous cathedral, the Sagrada Familia, in time to take the elevator to the very top and soak in some views of the city of Barcelona. Luke posed for some funny shots on the many tiny balconies sticking out of the winding tower staircases, while Loren, one of our tour leaders snapped photos from another balcony above.
Darren served as “el Rey del Dia” earlier this week, while Nicole was nominated as “La Reina del dia.”
 
Today we caught a glimpse of the Tour de France as Lance Armstrong rode through Placa Espana.  We visited the Museo Picasso, to experience more of Spain´s incredible artistic influences.
 
Tomorrow morning, it’s up early and off to weekend in Madrid. We are looking forward to experiencing another part of this gorgeous country, learning more about Spanish culture, enjoying our hotel stay in the center of the city and dining with the Opera singers… Ole!

Barcelona

Barcelona

Chillin'

Chillin'