Barcelona – A Hen Do After She Said I Do

Cheers to the Bride

Cheers to the Bride

According to Wikipedia a Hen Do or a Bachelorette party is a party held for a woman who is about to get married. It is modeled after the Bachelor party, historically a dinner given by the bridegroom to his friends shortly before his wedding. Hen parties were uncommon until the mid-1980’s and they are not at all common in Brazil.

As it turned out the Bride was already married when we set off for a long weekend of debauchery in Barcelona mid May 2014, but this Hen Do was not, in fact, your typical Hen Do with crazy games, male strippers, and serious alcohol consumption, although the later was indulged  by some more than others…you know who you are.

In any case, whatever happened in Barcelona WILL STAY IN BARCELONA, but I thought I would put together a collection of some of the things we got up to during our long weekend away in the beautiful Catalonian capital.

We left London early on Friday morning (16/05/14) from Gatwick. There were 9 of us :  Caroline (bride) and her 3 friends Fabiola (Brazilian), Servula (Brazilian) and Victoria (University friend and organizer of the hen do), Carol’s mother in law Vanessa and her friend Beverly, myself, my sister Virginia (bride’s aunties) and my daughter Chloe (Carol’s cousin).

At London Gatwick

At London Gatwick, from left to right me, Virginia, Caroline, Fabiola, Vanessa, Beverly, Servula, Chloe, and Victoria

We stayed at some lovely apartments not far from Las Ramblas. We rented 3 apartments: I shared with Virginia and Chloe, Vanessa and Beverly shared another and Caroline, Servula, Fabiola and Victoria shared the top floor apartment.

We rented 3 apartments here

We rented 3 apartments here

Inside our apartment was modern and spacious

Inside our apartment was modern and spacious

Chloe enjoying our sitting room

Chloe enjoying our sitting room

Our first planned activity was a tapas tasting session at a lovely and traditional Spanish Restaurant. It was a great place and we managed to get a table outdoors since it was a sunny day with pleasant temperatures. Our waiter was very friendly and helpful,  but I think we made a bit of a mistake here…we left it up to the waiter to bring us a selection of tapas since we could not make our minds up for what we wanted and so he made some suggestions and of course he chose the expensive selection, and he kept bringing more and tastier Tapas. But they were truly yummy and I loved them all. The sangria was also very nice, or so I was told since I don’t drink alcohol and had orange juice instead.  Few jugs of sangria later and we nearly fell off our chairs when the bill arrived, literally!

Tapas Restaurant

Tapas Restaurant

selection of meats

selection of meats

P1020160

Ramon

Ramon

Large prawns

Large prawns

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When this smoked dish arrived we knew it was going to cost us.

When this smoked dish arrived we knew it was going to cost us.

Free Champagne, to soften the blow of an expensive meal

Free Champagne, to soften the blow of an expensive meal

Vanessa...remind me of your promises to Ben?

Vanessa…remind me of your promises to Ben?

Since I don’t drink alcohol, I was the only sober one, boring…I know, of the group and just as well, since after our feast of delicious tapas, Victoria took us back to the apartments, to give us the instructions for our next activity. A game of “find the tourist attraction and have your photo taken with a ridiculously large inflatable“. We were separated into groups of 2: Virginia and me, Servula and Fabiola, Carol and Chloe, Vanessa and Beverly.

Victoria handed each team a “HOLA” bag, hello in Spanish and also the bride has a nickname of Lola, which contained a map of the attractions + inflatables. The rules were that the team that got most silly pictures in front of the designated tourist attractions would win.

 

 

Victoria handing over the "HOLA" bags.

Victoria handing over the “HOLA” bags.

"HOLA" bags with instructions and maps

“HOLA” bags with instructions and maps

Virginia inflating our ice cream

Virginia inflating our ice cream, luckily it was not a breathlizer

Vanessa and Beverly had the pink mobile phone

Vanessa and Beverly had the pink mobile phone

Carol and Chloe had a giant Cactus

Carol and Chloe had a giant Cactus

Fabiola and Servula had the blue guitar

Fabiola and Servula had the blue guitar

My heart sank, for starters, I can’t read a map and judging by the state of my partner Virginia, tipsy on sangria, she could not read a map either, in fact, Virginia could not stop laughing. Pleading eyes towards Victoria were a waste of time as she ruthlessly sent us on our way and then joined team Carol and Chloe (now…guess the team that won this particular game?)  yes you guessed it Carol and Chloe of course, I wonder if having Victoria had anything to do with that ha ha ha?

Virginia and I decided to walk…or rather stagger down to Las Rambla and managed to find it by asking various people for directions, as we walked around we got a little distracted with this very interesting place. There were all sorts of things going on here. It is very lively area with street artists, music, human statues etc.

Marilyn Monroe, loving the attention

Marilyn Monroe, loving the attention

Gaudi architecture

Gaudi architecture

Stag Do

Stag Do, at least we did not have to wear silly hats

Since we could not make any sense of that silly map, we thought that the best way to get to our first tourist attraction was to cheat a little bit and get a cab, but even with our cheating and getting into a cab, we still lost miserably and only managed to snap one picture in front of the beautiful Gaudi masterpiece The Sagrada Familia. Gaudi spent the last years of his life in the construction of this amazing church. The work is not yet finished, but even with all the scaffolding and building work going on it is a stunning building and a church unlike any other.

Gaudi master piece and a pink ice cream

Gaudi masterpiece and a pink ice cream

 

Amazing Gothic Architecture and attention to details

Amazing Gothic Architecture and attention to detail

Sagrada Familia

Sagrada Familia, the old and the new blend seamlessly 

Chloe and Carol getting ahead of the game

Chloe and Carol getting ahead of the game

They were on a mission to win

They were on a mission to win

one more in the bag

one more in the bag

Eat my dust

Eat my dust

And the winners are...

And the winners are…

On Friday night, at the end of our first day in Barcelona some of the girls went to see a Flamenco Show, but unfortunately I was just too tired and decided to have an early night, Chloe and Virginia also decided to call it a night, since the next day was going to be busy again.

Day 2 was the highlight for me, Victoria organized a fabulous boat trip. It was amazing to see Barcelona from the water. We had our own power boat complete with our very own Capitan, drinks were also included.

Arriving at the Barcelona Docks

Arriving at the Barcelona Docks

Our fabulous power boat

Our fabulous power boat

Inside our rented power boat

Inside our rented power boat

Racing off into the open sea

Racing off into the open sea

Barcelona from the water

Barcelona from the water

 

Honorary Capitan

Honorary Capitan

The girls had fun sitting at the front of the boat

The girls had fun sitting at the front of the boat

Caroline...if only Ben was here with me

Caroline…if only Ben was here with me

This modern bridge slides open to allow boats through

This modern bridge slides open to allow boats through

Chloe and I

Chloe and I

After such exhilarating boat ride we needed some food and a rest, we walked along the beach for a place to eat and after our meal,  we relaxed at the beach for a while enjoying the sunshine and warm temperature.

Time to realax

Time to relax

Virginia enjoying a Mojito.

Virginia enjoying a Mojito.

After some time to chill out and relax we decided to go for drinks at the IceBarcelona, it seems Ice Bars are becoming very popular all over the world. I have been few times to the Ice Bar in London and have enjoyed the novelty of it. The Barcelona Ice-bar is very similar, and as you get in you are given warm coat and gloves. Everything inside the bar is made of ice, including the ice-glasses that you are given with a shot of complimentary vodka, there are different flavors to chose from. It was rather bizarre that only a few minutes ago we were just across the road enjoying the warm sun and the beach. Some of us started regretting to be wearing flip flops and shorts. But it was great fun.

Smile..brrrrr

Smile..brrrrr

Cuddles to stay warm

Cuddles to stay warm

Don't be fooled by this fake fire

Don’t be fooled by this fake fire

On our last night in Barcelona, we started the evening with cocktails at a rooftop bar, followed by a lovely meal and games at a posh restaurant. The poor bride endured a game of Mr. and Mrs., but she did well and proved to know her groom extremely well.

Cocktails before dinner

Cocktails before dinner

Early Sunday morning we caught our flight back to Blighty. We were all bleary-eyed and very tired,  poor Virginia had a very bad stomach ache throughout the night and so she spent the flight home holding a sick bag. I drove her back to her home in London, since I had left my car parked at the airport,  and then made my on way back to Dorset.

I will definitely go back to Barcelona to explore further, it’s a wonderful city and a weekend is not enough to fully appreciate all that this great city has to offer.

apparently his name is "Marc"

apparently, his name is “Marc”?

 

 

6 Comments on “Barcelona – A Hen Do After She Said I Do

  1. Sounds like an action-packed weekend, I love the inflatable photo game! I can’t wait to get to Barcelona, it looks like an amazing city, hopefully next year we’ll be there, possibly to teach 🙂

    • Hi Amy, yes we did enjoy that game, although my sister Virginia and I could not read the map and failed to find the places. Barcelona is a great city, it has a lot to offer including the food, culture, lovely weather and great beaches. I think you would enjoy teaching English as a foreign language there.

  2. Now that’s a girls get-a-way! What a memory you all made for all of you. We hope to make it to Barcelona after we walk the Camino, I have been intrigued by the Gaudi cathedral for a number of years and figure this is my chance since we’ll be in Spain.

    • Hi Patti, we did have fun, but I would have loved to have seen more of Barcelona. I think you are going to love it, the Cathedral is amazing. Mr. Gaudi was a genius and well ahead of his time. I will look forward to hear how you like Barcelona.

  3. Achei o máximo tudo… gostaria muito de ter ido… mas tenho q fazer um pequeno comentario… quase morri de rir de vcs de shorts no ice bar…kkkkkk… confessem vcs quase congelaram! ahahaha… eu fui com vcs no ice bar de londres e era muito friooooo… que ideia de vcs ir de calças curtas! ahahahahahha… adorei mana!

    • Sim Lita o Ice Bar estava uma geladeira, lembro mesmo de nos no de Londres. Em Barcelona minutos antes estavamos na praia, foi muito legal e so faltou voce la pra fazer festa juntas.

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