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Artistic Genius in Barcelona

Artistic Genius in Barcelona

May 2018 – Music and Markets Barcelona Tour
Barcelona, Spain

Interested in a Music and Markets Tour? We’d love to hear from you!
Why not join us on our newest tour in September – Bordeaux and Dordogne

Montjuic rises near the sea, crowned with a fort, several sites for the 1992 Summer Olympics, and parks and museums, the most popular one filled with Joan Miró’s work….which was the impetus for our Barcelona Tour when in 2012 there was a special Miró exhibition at the National Gallery of Art in Washington. At the suggestion of the former Director of Music at the gallery, we put together a week full of art and music for a new Music and Markets tour – and liked it so much that we’ve continued to offer it!
Tracing Miró’s work from beginning to end, Fondation Miró is an open, airy, and well-designed space, welcoming individuals and groups of all ages. There have always been young school children there when we’ve visited, and it’s delightful to watch them discover the secrets and lessons within these colorful works with the help of an engaging young docent.
We soar through the air to our next destination, Barceloneta on the beach. After a stroll along the sand, taking in art installations both permanent and transitory, we find our reserved table at Can Majo to enjoy some fabulous seafood – this chef is a genius of taste and presentation too! It’s not far back to the hotel, and we all enjoy the walk after our deliciously filling meal.
More artistry awaits us beside a peaceful cloister in the chapel of Santa Anna in the Barri Gotic at an evening concert –Ksenia Axelroud and Joan Benejam, the Barcelona Duo de Guitarra. Spanish melodies of Albéniz, Granados and Soler fill the intimate space, before a rousing finale from Bizet’s Carmen.
Stopping for tapas at a couple of places on the way back to the hotel, we enjoy a final stroll through the Born, with Santa Maria del Mar’s belltower lighting our way.

Barcelona Bounty

Barcelona Bounty

May 2018 – Music and Markets Barcelona Tour
Barcelona, Spain

Interested in a Music and Markets Tour? We’d love to hear from you!
Why not join us on our newest tour in September – Bordeaux and Dordogne

Each day is unique and exciting around Barcelona – from Art Nouveau neighborhoods, gorgeous seaside, ground-breaking art such as Picasso and Miro, to today’s multi-layered Barri Gotic. Passing through bright and sunny Plaça de Sant Jaume, the administrative heart of both the city and the region, we’re enveloped in the warren of ancient streets of old town.
To the right of Sant Jaume is the cathedral, and before the crowds arrive we enjoy the peacefulness of the gothic cloister, with its 13 swans-a-swimming around the fountain. Not far away is a trace of yet-older civilization, a cluster of elegant Roman columns incorporated right into an apartment block! And here are the steps Columbus trod when he brought news of the New World to Queen Isabelle…around the corner from my favorite courtyard – the gorgeous Archives of the Crown of Aragon, built in the 1500s. Of course Music and Markets guests don’t want to miss Barcelona’s premier market, La Boqueria! And neither does anyone else – it’s always jam-packed! And overflowing with Spanish temptations from landand sea. Across the Ramblas, the main pedestrian walkway, narrow lanes are filled with more enticements – fulfill your flamenco dreams here, or purchase a fragrant candle from the oldest shop in Barcelona – Cerería Subirà. One of Barcelona’s don’t-miss venues is the magnificent Art Nouveau Palau de la Música Catalana, under whose glorious stained glass ceiling  we complete the day with some un-Catalan music, an evening of flamenco and opera.
Tastes and sights, smells and sounds, what a day full of Barcelona’s bounty!

Tarragona Through the Ages

Tarragona Through the Ages

Spring in Spain – – Saturday, May 12, 2012

Interested in a Music and Markets Tour? We’d love to hear from you!  Join us on a summer tour in Provence or our featured (and expanded!) 2012 Amsterdam/Belgium tour!

All aboard for Tarragona!
Today’s day trip takes us southwest along the coast to the Roman outpost of Tarraco, much more important than Barca, as Barcelona was called, millennia ago.

We walk up from the train station past the Roman Arena, used for varied concerts and events today. We visited in November, planning this daytrip, and have been looking forward to sharing this many-layered town with our guests.

Throughout the town Roman relics jut into daily life – an ancient arch in the middle of a market square,

a restaurant tucked under the ancient vaults of the Circus.

We enjoy spotting more recent touches of beauty and history as well – a sinuous Art Nouveau boutique,

and a really lovely patch of decor high on a wall – like a lace doily etched into the façade.

At the base of stairs ascending to the Cathedral medieval arches lead to the Call, the Jewish quarter of town,

and on the site of the Roman forum, the peaceful cloister beside the cathedral invites us to relax,

as doves coo and lush roses perfume the air.

Sights, shopping, and lunch fill our day, and we return to Barcelona in time for an evening concert in the fabulous Palau de Musica Catalana.

Inside and out, it’s a masterpiece of Modernista design, and we fill our eyes with the beauty of the stained glass ceiling and surrounding garden- like decor.


We’re thrilled with our seats, just above the musicians – beyond my knees Ivan Fischer, the charismatic conductor of the Budapest Festival Orchestra seems almost near enough to touch!
Our perch is the ideal spot to enjoy the concert, enveloped by the music beneath us.