How To See Barcelona on a 20-Something Budget

We had an amazing time in Barcelona. The city has a vibrant nightlife, which suits us quite well, and no shortage of sights to see and things to do during the day.

How to See Barcelona on a 20-Something Budget

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Miles of candy in Mercat de la Boqueria.

Three Things You Must do in Barcelona:

  1. Mercat de la Boqueria: Everywhere you turn in this market your eyes will be accosted by splashes of different colours and distractions. I am all about a good market and this one did not disappoint. My taste buds were screaming with satisfaction the entire time we spent here. The market is also located along La Rambla, which is a great shopping street. You could make a day of it.
  2. Have shots at Espit Chupitos: With 700 to choose from and only costing 2 euro a piece, this can make for a spectacular night. More on this place down below.
  3. Waterfront: Barcelona has a great beach. Along the sand people make different sand sculptures. They do expect a tip if they catch you trying to take a photograph.

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There were a lot of different sand sculptures along the beach!

You may be surprised not to see La Sagrada Familia on my list. We did not actually go inside and were underwhelmed by the outside. I mean, it was nice, but it just didn’t do anything for us. The construction really took away the impact for us.

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Construction makes us sad.

We did make an appearance at Park Guell but we only scoped out some of the free portion and didn’t spend much time wandering through.

Nightlife in Barcelona

  • I just cannot say enough about Espit Chupitos. This is the best shots bar that I have ever been too, they have 700 to choose from. The first time we went, Jess and I teamed up with two other people from our hostel in an attempt to sample the most shots. We each bought rounds of different things. Harry Potter shots are lit on fire and served with an orange. Willy Wonka shots are served with whipped cream and chocolate. Pulp Fiction shots are essentially death in a tiny glass. Tutti Frutti is a sweet break from the other options. After this night of bonding, we hope to see these friends again when we visit Chicago this summer. Strategize to sample as many as you can! You’re in Europe, enjoy it! This is one of the many times in our friendship that Jess and I have noticed that we always drink harder than everyone we are with. But, we have the most fun.

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The names of all the different shots are listed on chalkboards at the back.

  • We went to Sutton twice and both nights that we went they played hip-hop. I love a good hip-hop night.  In Spain, the party starts late. If you go to the club before 1:30 am- 2:00 am (which is last call where I’m from), you may be the only people in the club. Try to get there late. I recommend napping before going. And pre-drinking because club drinks are pricey.
  • Another place we checked out was Opium. The security at this beach club is very strict, the guy in front of us was not allowed in because he was wearing pink shoes and another guy had to remove his earrings. That being said, creepy guys will always find their way in. Stand your ground. You don’t have to dance with anyone that you do not want to. I am no stranger to inviting guys to get away from my friends and myself.

Places to Eat:

Ramen-Ya Hiro: Every single time we walked by this ramen place there was a massive line. People start lining up 45 minutes before the place even opens. Naturally, we needed to know what the fuss was all about. The food was delectable. I never knew ramen could taste so good! In light of the long line, I asked the waiter if we could order a glass of wine to drink will we waited outside. He happily obliged us. Fun Fact: I tried edamame for the first time without knowing that it is essentially a green bean and you only eat the insides.

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This ramen was seriously so amazing! Worth a line.

Mercat de la Boqueria: I’m always a proponent of a good market. You can find every single type of food you could possibly want here. It is almost impossible to even make a decision. Don’t be hasty; wander the whole market before deciding. There is flavour and temptation around every corner.

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So many tantalizing options.

Pizza del Born: Located more centrally, this place makes a mouthwatering pizza. We needed this to recover after visiting Espit Chupitos.

Getting Around in Barcelona

Barcelona has a good metro system. Jess and I shared one metro card, as they don’t track who is using it. If you only need to go for a few stops through the city, this could be a wise idea for yourself and your travel mate. We were able to take the metro to a bus stop and a bus to the airport for only 6 euro.

Otherwise, we walked through the city.

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Yeah Barcelona Hostel

We stayed at Yeah Hostel, which was part of a larger chain of hostels throughout Spain and Portugal. Honestly, I loved this chain. The beds are massive with individual charging stations; there is plenty of space to lock up your things. The showers were great. The only thing that I didn’t love was the lighting. The rooms have terrible lighting. These hostels all offer a 15 euro pub-crawl which gives you open bar in the hostel for beer and sangria, followed by one bar, where you are meant to get drunk for cheap, and then head off to a larger club.

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