Three years ago I came to Barcelona with a friend, both on Erasmus. We did not know what to expect, we had never been there. After our six month Erasmus period was finished I decided to continue studying there and now do an internship. Why?
Coming from Belgium I’m not really used to amazing weather and openness as is more common for northern regions. When I got off the plane I felt like I was in paradise. Sunlight, warmth, palm trees, the beach, I felt like home.
The day I first arrived here, my friend and me were completely in the dark. We heard some very different opinions about Barcelona from people who had visited the city on holiday. But as opinions are subjective it was hard for us to form an accurate picture of the city.
We were told of the good and the bad. A lot of pickpockets, good food, high prices etc. were among those opinions. I have been here for a while now and I have never been pickpocketed. Over priced restaurants you only find near the main tourist spots. In fact Barcelona has a lot awesome P/Q restaurants, shops and bars if you take the time to explore the side streets and smaller alleys.
When moving to Barcelona it is difficult to find (trustworthy) accommodation. Depending on your budget I would advise to either work with an agency or follow one of the many Facebook groups on accommodation in Barcelona. As is in most cities the closer you want to live near the center, the more you will pay.
Scared of boredom? Don’t be, in Barcelona there is always something to do. It is one of the liveliest cities I have seen. It is never quiet and there are always events. Also culturally it has some amazing architecture and very nice museums with names like Gaudi and Dali.
Getting lost in Barcelona? Highly unlikely, all streets go horizontally or vertically so it’s really easy to find your way. Just go straight. Should you still get lost, ask a local and he/she will gladly guide you (in Catalan probably)
Whether Barcelona is for you or not that is up to you to discover but Barcelona is a must see. I know I love it and am planning on staying here as long as I can.
Name: Gino Chiffi