Sarria (Where we lived for 5 weeks arranged through Ivan’s work)
This is not a place you can come visit as a tourist and experience what I am telling you about. You need to find accommodation here or move here to see the greatness and quirks. It really is a pueblo (little town) in design/layout but yet it is just an expansion of Barcelona
You can walk through the same town 3+ times a day and each time is a completely different experience. Shops/bars appear from nowhere. Shops are so covered up(roller doors with no signage) when closed you don't notice they exist until they open.
There is not a lot of sunshine, the buildings in the narrow streets block the sun most the time. Our apartment has a shared roof top, the only place easy to soak up the sun.
Photo: Oliver and Sienna on the roof top terrace soaking up sun!
I have always been sensitive to smell but we both notice instantly the constant sewer smell. The infrastructure seems to be struggling.
We are very observant on prices after being told as part of financial decisions that cost of living will be lower. We notice some things are wow cheap ... others are the same.
Little specialty shops are everywhere and in plenty. A little charcuterie minutes from our apartment sells little mini salami. The catalan salami is called Fuet and it is delicious, especially when from a quality place. The mini fuet is probably one of our favourite things so far.
I love walking everywhere. It's so easy and enjoyable and you can see so much in a little walk.
Not far from where we are staying is the Organic Market. They have good produce but certainly not cheaper than back home, maybe even more expensive. Produce seems to be in very good visual quality in general from anywhere you go. Bigger population? I suppose this is something I notice in Sydney and Melbourne too.
Sarria has the wonderful rough roads that make you feel it is only for pedestrians but then occasionally a car comes through and you are reminded these pathwas are actually roads!
The main strip we find a beauty product store and are instantly very excited they sell Aesop!!! We stock up whilst we are waiting for our shipment from Australia.
On our first Sunday we go for a walk with no agenda and no idea where we are walking. We end up through Pedrables (next suburb over from Sarria) it is probably the most prestiges suburb in Barcelona. We walk past an interesting entry which we explore further. It is http://monestirpedralbes.bcn.cat/en and free to explore on Sundays ☺ … it feels pretty exciting to just walk casually past these things only 15mins from where you are staying by chance.
We then try to find a playground for the children. We ask strangers for a fun adventure to find one. They send us to one that was quite a way away and tiny. At this moment I was a little concerned that this was not a thing since we had to go so far for such a tiny one!!! Luckily we found many more much better and closer later on ☺.