Madrid, Valencia, and Barcelona

Hello Angels,

My last night as a contiki group ended back where it started; in Madrid.

Nothing exciting happened as we arrived a little later in the afternoon.

We headed out for our final dinner in the city, a 3 course meal, true Spanish style.

Sadly, I found myself unable to even move with the worst heart burn I had ever felt, so my night was short lived.

For some reason the contiki group didn’t want to go out for drinks or to party on the last night which is so strange for a contiki group to not want to party and get drunk on their final night together (lucky for me though, it means I didn’t miss out on anything hehe).

The following morning was so nice to sleep in until 9am. We had a bus to catch to Valencia at 12 so we weren’t in any rush.

Upon boarding the bus, the driver was scanning our tickets and wouldn’t let us on because Cassie had accidentally booked the tickets for the day before.

Panicked, we were running through the bus station with our bags and luggage falling all over the place to get another ticket before the bus left.

Thank god we made it on that bus or I don’t know what we would have done.

Lesson learnt. Always double check dates and times that somebody else has booked for you, people. Always.

The bus was around 5 hours to Valencia but the driver chucked on a DVD for us to watch. It’s funny watching English movies dubbed over in Spanish. I had no idea what was going on but it took up a bit of time playing a guessing game.

We got to our hostel around 5pm the same afternoon.

Exhausted from the last month of travelling, we decided to stay in, watch Netflix and order uber eats for dinner.

Our full day in Valencia was so nice.

The streets were riddled with the cutest shops and boutiques.

We spent hours wandering around the winding streets and sitting in a cafe just watching people walk by.

The hard thing about travelling for so long is the dirty laundry. So, with our afternoon we walked to a laundromat and washed our clothes.

It felt so nice to go to sleep in clothes that hadn’t been washed in a hotel sink for the past month.

For dinner that night we decided to get a salad from the grocery store. Eating a 3 course meal nearly every night on contiki has really taken a toll on my body and I can tell you right now that a diet is calling my name back at home. Lol.

Our last morning in Valencia was spent packing up our belongings, walking in the sweltering heat to the bus station and sitting on the bus for 3 hours.

I felt sad to leave Valencia. Although small, it was a beautiful city which made me feel so comfortable and welcomed.

Barcelona, our final stop in Spain.

Although we had already been to Barcelona on our contiki, we felt as though we didn’t really get to spend enough free time there. What better way to amend that then to go back?

Again we arrived a little later in the afternoon, so we got some small snacks food for dinner and made ourselves a Netflix nest.

This time our hostel was a bit dodgy and I felt somewhat out of place there but alas! Location, location, location. Pretty much right on La Ramblas!

Our next day in Barcelona, I decided to venture out on my own because I didn’t want to wait for Cassie to wake up at midday. That girl can’t ever get enough sleep.

I decided to go against my anxious tendencies and go where my heart took me.

A massive step for me in my journey in self confidence and self discovery.

I found so many cool vintage shops along the small streets.

I love to be able to just wander through the streets and see Barcelona for what it truly is.

Although I didn’t want to venture too far out of my comfort zone, I felt proud that I had even ventured from it in the first place.

I met up with two girls from New Zealand who had been on my contiki with me, and showed them a few of the vintage shops I had found.

After a couple of hours we parted ways as we had made plans for dinner along the beachfront later that night.

Our dinner was beautiful, we went to an Italian restaurant and got a free glass of champagne each upon arrival and, after flirting with the waiter a little, got a free shot each. Of course we tipped him a bit more than we usually would.

He even drew us a lovely note on our bill. What a doll. We love you too, Leandro.

Our final full day in Barcelona; what a relaxing day.

Cassie and I made plans to have a beach day.

We caught the train to a nearby station and grabbed a bite to eat before heading to the beach.

We accidentally chose a nudist beach, or maybe that’s what all beaches are like in Spain?

Although nearly every second person had their junk out for the world to see, we found a spot next to a few people who seemed more conservative and made ourselves at home.

It was a lovely day.

We sunbaked and bought sangrias from the people walking around trying to sell beer, water and of course sangria.

We went home and showered, got into some nice clothes, and went out for our last meal in Spain.

For my last meal, I got paella. A true delicacy.

As the sun went down (I still can’t get over how late the sun sets. Seriously, 9pm?), we made our way back to our hostel and got some rest before the big adventure to Amsterdam the next day.

Lots of love,

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