Barcelona: Els Encants Vells Flea Market

We really did not know what to do on our sixth day in Barcelona.  The highlight of the day is lunch at one of the new fine dining restaurant that showcases contemporary Catalan cooking.  The day of devoid of a theme, if you may.  It will be a slow, unrushed day.

Suanne had a little accident the day before.  It had never happened before and it just had to happen when we are on vacation.  You see, she lost the tiny screw on her glasses.  Without her glasses, she is technically blind.

We tried fixing it in the hotel and the only thing that we had that is small enough to hold it together temporarily is … dental floss!!  Since Suanne can’t see, I had to thread the dental floss … and you know that this sort of things are not meant for a guy to do right.  I mean, men are not wired for this type of fine motor stuff.  Frustrating work I must say but got it on finally.  It was quite a neat job too if I must say so myself.


The hotel concierge told us that we could try El Cortes Ingles to fix the glasses permanently.  There is one about 3 blocks away from the hotel at the Placa de Francesc Macia on Dia-gonal.  It was too early and the shops were not opened yet.  So we had breakfast at one of the many coffee shops peppered around the round about.

We went into this place called Kilimanjaro which is modern and spanking clean — but still as smokey.  As usual we had Cafe Con Leche.


The service was “excelente”.  I think the guy took care of us better because we are tourists.  It was supposed to be self-service but he came around where we are to double clean our table and asked that if we wanted anything to just ask.  We felt good — nice young man.

We had chocolate pastry …


… and croissant sandwich with ham and cheese which was a little toasted.  The croissant sandwich was delightful.  The crusty sandwich with cured meat was equally great.  Breakfast was €9.55.

I remembered it was a very relaxed breakfast like we did not have anything to do in the whole morning.  We took our time and looked out the window … people watching.  Dia-gonal is a really busy street.  There were cars, people, buses, bicycles just bustling here and there.


After breakfast we took the subway to the flea market.  It was just a few stops away and so we thought we might as well do this.  The flea market is located at this huge flyover which from the looks of it is the only flyover in the city.  It is here there is the Torre Agbar which looks a lot like the Gherkin in London.

The Torre Agbar is perhaps the tallest building in Barcelona.  You can’t see clearly from the picture above but it is lighted with thousands of LED lights which gives it a hue of colors.  The window panes are automatically controlled by temperature sensors.  


The flea market is called the Els Encants Vells.  They sell anything and everything here.  Mostly old stuff.


Frankly it was not what we envisioned this place to be.  We were warned as we entered the place to be very careful with our things and of pick pockets.  So we felt really unsafe and frankly, uncomfortable.  So, I just took a couple of pictures and then kept the camera out of sight.  🙂

There were a number of eating stalls packed with people … locals.  I fancy going in to buy something to eat there.  Sometimes at places like this they have great food, right?  Suanne was not too enthusiastic about my suggestion and effectively killed it.

We did not spend a lot of time here.


We came across the tram.  Since we had nothing to do until lunch, we thought we take a joy ride on it.  We spent a few minutes trying to figure out the route and the tickets but can’t make head or tail of it.  The people there too wasn’t of much help because they don’t speak English.

Without knowing what else to do, we went to McDonalds to kill the extra hour we had on our hand.

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