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The Tufts Daily
Where you read it first | Saturday, April 20, 2024

Making my (Den)mark: Spring Break in Spain

I just returned to Copenhagen after spending the last week traveling in Spain. This week was my free break and at the end of March, I’ll be going to Finland with my core class.

My friend and I decided to go to Barcelona as the first stop of our spring break trip, followed by four days in Madrid — a total of eight days in sunny, beautiful weather. I finally got to wear some of my sundresses and T-shirts. And no big parka! It was quite a thrill.

If you thought my Amsterdam puns were the end of my travel ‘jokes,’ well, guess again. Most — scratch that, all — of our days in Barcelona included several renditions of "Strut" (2006) from “The Cheetah Girls 2” (2006) or any of the other musical numbers from the Barcelona-set film (a quality Disney Channel Original Movie, if you haven’t seen it), but I promise that I didn’t choose to go to Barcelona just so I could sing these songs. Seriously.

In all actuality, I have a friend studying abroad in Barcelona, so I got to visit her and see many of the classic tourist attractions.

First up, we went to Park Güell, the park with probably the most Instagram-famous bench in the world. In other words, it’s a beautiful area that features Gaudí's stunningly unique tile work. I couldn’t resist buying a Gaudí-inspired refrigerator magnet to bring home, even though my mom always yells at me for buying too many “tacky” magnets (sorry, Mom!).

We also checked the Sagrada Familia off our lists, which was probably my favorite sight of the trip. From the outside, the church is absolutely ginormous. Looking up at its insanely high towers, it’s hard to believe someone could ever build something that tall and intricately designed. My inner art history nerd was definitely making an appearance that day. I immediately snapped some pictures to send to my first-year art history study buddy.

Not only was the outside huge, but it seemed even bigger from the inside. The Sagrada Familia also has some of the most beautiful stained-glass windows I've ever seen. It was like we stepped into a kaleidoscope of rainbow colors reflecting off the walls and floor in all different shapes and patterns. I already can’t wait to attempt to paint the pictures I took with watercolors, though I doubt I’ll be able to accurately capture its beauty.

Another one of my favorite parts of Barcelona was the La Boqueria market. I can’t totally explain why, but I’ve always loved going to huge food markets. I think it’s because family has always gone to market together whenever we travel. La Boqueria was full of brightly colored fruits, various nuts and cheeses and a whole bunch of other delicious food options. I opted for fresh mango both times we went, and it was definitely some of the best mango I’ve had.

All in all, Barcelona definitely fulfilled my preteen, “Cheetah Girls 2” dreams. And I even got a tiny bit of a tan to bring back with me to Copenhagen!