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Winter in Europe

Post written by Kate Robinson
My favourite time of the year to travel is the winter. I think it gets to that stage when I have had enough of the cold weather, and I just need to get away for a break. Normally I am not too fussy about the destination – a change of scenery does the trick. However, I do like the south of Spain or Italy as the temperatures are mild and there are fewer tourists at this time of the year. It is always easy to find last minute flights online and airlines are usually trying to sell off flights for January and February, the two quietest months of the year. If you would like to travel within Europe you are also at an advantage. Low cost airlines such as easyJet, Ryanair and Vueling are just some of the most popular carriers which offer routes between destinations in Europe. The cost of flights is generally lower than those of standard airlines and they are usually even cheaper during these months. I personally prefer easyJet out of all the low cost airlines, because it flies to the main airports of cities. (Ryanair normally flies to secondary airports). If you are flying long-haul I should expect that you will also find some travel deals for this period.

One thing to remember is that the low-season lasts from January until the start or mid-March in Europe. If you aren’t worried about the weather and are more interested in sightseeing, this is the perfect time of the year to go. Accommodation is usually much cheaper, so you could perhaps afford to stay somewhere nicer than you would normally. Tourist attractions also have low-season rates and restaurant waiters will be standing on the streets trying to lure you in by offering a better deal than the one beside it. In my opinion the best thing about travelling at this time of the year is that you won’t find hordes of tourists, which will make sightseeing more pleasant.

Category: Luxury  Tags: ,  One Comment

“La Boqueria” or “La Mercat de la Boqueria” in Barcelona

The famous market “La Boqueria” or “La Mercat de la Boqueria” in Barcelona, Spain is the one of the most visited attrations in the city and maybe among the top visited places in the world. Going back to history, we find out that La Boqueria was first mentioned in 1217 tables were installed near the old door of the city to sell meat. Later on, that is in 1470, the name of the market changed into Mercat Bornet, or simply, Mercat de la Palla (Straw Market). Some years later, local authorities took the decision to construct a separate market on La Rambla, housing mainly fishmongers and butchers. 1840 is the year when it was decided to build the official market, which opened the same year. Some of the old structures of La Boqueria Market, the metal roof still exists.

Mercat de la Boqueria Map, Barcelona, Spain
Mercat de la Boqueria Map, Barcelona, Spain

La Mercat de la Boqueria is a mixture of colours, tastes, smells, all attracting customers to see and buy. You can find almost everything here, from nuts to candies, fish, meat, cheese, bread and drinks. Tourists have this market on their top to-visit list. If you are in search of fresh food, than this is the right place. It is very crowded, especially because there are a lot of tourists there recording and taking photos. Paella, fish and chips, tapas all are there, freshly cooked, before your eyes. Not to mention the unique smell!

Boqueria Market or The Mercat de Sant Josep de la Boqueria, one of the oldest markets in Europe, is situated on Las Ramblas, a very popular street in Barcelona, near the Opera house, just in front of Liceum Metro station, and it is opened from 8 A.M. to 8 P.M., except Sundays. The Market has many sections, such as pork products and meats, dried fruits, fresh fruits and vegatables, seafood, seeds and cereals, olives, candies and most of all, fish. You can also have lunch or dinner in one of the attractive bars and restaurants situated right in the center of Boqueria.

As a tip when planning your trip to Barcelona, go to Boqueria, see the stalls selling jamon, just at the entrance of the market, it is Spain’s delectable cured meat, buy yourself a fresh fruit juice, it is a wide range of fruit-based drinks, it may become very crowded at the entrance, where this juice is sold with about €2.50. Go to the fish stalls and admire all kinds of seafoods, most of them freshly brought that morning from the Mediterranean Sea. And finally, don’t leave La Mercat de la Boqueria without tasting paella, or tapas, two local dishes.

So, enjoy a feast of colours and smells in La Boqueria, maybe one of the best markets in the world! It is a fascinating place, with a reputation of having one of the best fresh food markets in Europe. And in the end, go for a long walk on Las Ramblas.

Different Types of Cheese at Boqueria Market, Barcelona
Different Types of Cheese at Boqueria Market, Barcelona

Different Types of Fish Sold at La Boqueria Market in Barcelona, Spain
Different Types of Fish Sold at La Boqueria Market in Barcelona, Spain

Freshly Squeezed Juice at Boqueria Market, Barcelona
Freshly Squeezed Juice at Boqueria Market, Barcelona

Fruit and Vegetables Stalls at Boqueria, Las Ramblas, Barcelona
Fruit and Vegetables Stalls at Boqueria, Las Ramblas, Barcelona

Fruit Stalls at La Mercat de la Boqueria, Las Ramblas
Fruit Stalls at La Mercat de la Boqueria, Las Ramblas

La Boqueria Market in Barcelona
La Boqueria Market in Barcelona

Mercat de la Boqueria, the Famous Market on Las Ramblas, Barcelona
Mercat de la Boqueria, the Famous Market on Las Ramblas, Barcelona

Stalls With Tasty Sweets and Nuts Sold at La Mercat de la Boqueria, Barcelona
Stalls With Tasty Sweets and Nuts Sold at La Mercat de la Boqueria, Barcelona

Jamon, Boqueria Market in Barcelona
Jamon, Boqueria Market in Barcelona

Hot Holidays In Lanzarote

Lanzarote is one of the seven Spanish islands that form the Canarian archipelago. Which is situated close to the west coast of Africa on a similar line of longitude to parts of Mexico and the Bahamas. As a result the island boasts a semi tropical climate and temperatures that climb into the mid 20´s Celsius even during the depths of December. Making it popular as both a summer and winter sun destination. Especially with tourists from the UK – who account for around half of the 1.4 million tourist arrivals recorded annually. Lanzarote was first subdued and conquered by the Spanish in the early 1400´s – providing a platform for the invasion of the remaining Canary Islands.

Beach at Papagayo
Beach at Papagayo
And assumed an important role in the growth of the empire – as during the years of Spain’s a naval domination galleons crossing the Atlantic with Inca silver and gold would stop and resupply here. During the 18th and 19th centuries the island was rocked by massive volcanic eruptions which totally transformed much of the interior. Replacing farmland and villages with fields of lava and burnt out volcanoes. Causing widespread hardship for Lanzaroteños and forcing many to more »

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