A long weekend in Catalunya

Earlier this month we got together with hubbies’ family in the rural outskirts of Barcelona for his baby sister’s bday celebration. We all stayed at this rural agrotourism house, Can Gual. Aside from the usual parenting stress, and getting lost on the way thanks to some construction detours, it was relaxation bliss. We hung out, ate a lot, enjoyed the country air, went on a couple of outings, tooled around the city a bit on our way home and rode the ferry!

Here’s our itinerary, in case you ever decide to stay in an agrotourism rural house in Spain one day.

The ferry ride! On thursday morning we packed up the car and caught the Noon ferry from Palma to Barcelona. We did this to avoid plane and security madness with our two girls and all of their stuff (car seats, strollers, etc.). Book your tickets in advance. We went for the camarote (state room, if you can call it that) so we’d be more comfortable for feedings and nap times and again, have room for all our stuff. It takes about 7 hours from Palma to Barcelona, but the time flies by and it’s really more comfortable for families, people traveling with pets, older folks, etc. Plus it’s fun if you don’t get sea sick!

The drive to Can Gual! We arrived in Barcelona around 7 p.m., drove our car off the ferry (how cool is that?!) and headed to the town of Ametlla, where just outside we’d find the warm and inviting rural house. Oh and yes, we got a bit lost. No big deal. Everyone else would arrive Friday evening, so we had the chance to get settled in and enjoy some family time just the four of us.

Saturday we all went to lunch to this really old manor converted to restaurant, called Can Palau where we had traditional pork dishes and calçots starters. Calçots are those really long, tender onions they grill and devour in northern Spain. Traditionally, large groups get together outdoors for a calçotada, or calçots bbq. See embarrassing pics below.

Sunday we visited a very old monastery, Sant Miquel Del Fai, parts of which date back to the 9th, 10th and 15th centuries. It was carved into the side of the mountains and is surrounded by steep cliffs, waterfalls, hidden grottos and beautiful sweeping views of the valley below. You pay about 11 euros to get in, but prices vary depending on how much you plan to see, whether you want to visit the caves below and do the 2k hike to the end of the grounds, etc. It was really cool to see. Afterwards, we headed back to the house, packed, chilled out and headed into Barcelona where we drove around a bit to see some of the city sites before boarding the ferry for the ride back home. Speaking of, returning from Barcelona to Palma is an overnight trip. You leave around 11 p.m. and arrive before 7 a.m. the next day. FUN times!

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Boarding the ferry IN OUR CAR!

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See those tiny lights in the distance? That’s Barcelona!

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Docking in Barcelona

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Can Palau, the calçots restaurant outside of Amettla

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Eating calçots

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The Monastery, Sant Miquel Del Fai

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