Wednesday, March 28, 2012

La Rambla, La Boqueria, Liceu (3Ls)

After sight-seeing at Port Vell, we walked along La Rambla, the popular tourist tree-lined pedestrian mall  in Barcelona.  I was bit a apprehensive as I had read on websites and had been cautioned by friends, to be wary of strangers around the area as they might be pick-pockets.  So, I was literally clutching my bag, using the camera discreetly and on the lookout for dubious characters!  Hahaha!   Reflecting on this now, I think I would have enjoyed myself more if I had not been unduly worried.  After all, there were scores of policemen patrolling the area!

Honestly, I felt that La Rambla was a bit over-rated??  The usual thing- traders, street artists, etc.  Nothing that you can't find in London or even Kuala Lumpur.  If I were to visit Barcelona again, I  would spend more time walking through the cobbled path of El-Born and Barri Gotic rather than rambling on La Rambla, that's for sure! :)

Among the places of attraction along La Rambla was the Gran Teatre del Liceu (Liceu Theatre)...

...err... Erotic Museum, anyone?? :P

and of course, La Boqueira  (Boqueira Market). 

 The market dated back to the 13th Century.  What I liked about the place was the diversed selection of food and the fantastic colours.   

Yang paling mahal kat sini ialah... 

Jamon Iberico @ peha babi hitam Iberia
Jamon Iberico (Iberian ham) is a type of cured ham sourced from black Iberian pigs bred in the Iberian Peninsular.  Mula-mula nampak, tak ambik pot, coz I've seen this in Jamie's Italian in Bristol.  It was hubby (the walking encyclopedia :)) who told me that these were no normal ham.  These came from black Iberian pigs which, apart from grass, were strictly fed with barley, maize, acorns, herbs and olives!  Wow!  Siap ada gred !  The most expensive was Jamon Iberico Bellota (see pix).  Jamon Iberico and suckling pigs can be found in most Barcelona supermarkets.  So, I guessed,  these were Catalan delicacies.

Talking about food, we stumbled upon Halal food as we were looking for a surau to pray.  The surau was located off-La Rambla, in an area called El-Raval.  The dark narrow path and grim-looking foreign faces (Eh! Eh!  Aku pun pendatang jugak! Kuikuikui!) that we saw on our way to the surau, made the neighbourhood appeared sinister. Tapi itu cuma luaran saja.  Once in the surau, a kind siak led us to a spacious praying hall on the first floor where where we rested, washed and prayed.  Alhamdulillah :)

While walking back to La Rambla, we discovered quite a few halal restaurant and pattiserie (pastisseria in Catalan) along Carrer de l'Hospital.  We stopped at one (forgot it's name) as we saw the signage had some arabic words.  As we oggled at the delightful yummies, the friendly girl behind the counter who understood little English, repeatedly said: "Musulman! Musulman!" while pointing at the pastries.  So, we bought some snacks and ate them at the National Library of Catalonia grounds.  The 15th century library building used to house a hospital (Hospital de Santa Creu).  

Lepas "isi minyak", we continued sight-seeing :).  


Anonymous said...

Great choices. Masa kt sana dulu tak tahu pun ada surau. Mkn pun tawakal aje kt restoran Turki

fiziskandarz said...

I didn't know about Jamon Iberico until I read this! [ too busy taking pictures haha ]. nice entries kak Noreen, we want more! we want more! :D

Koonch said...

Tq! Tq! :)