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5 tips to enjoy the gastronomy in Vigo

1. - Seafood, seafood and more seafood

Vigo is a paradise for the senses but, especially, for the taste of gourmet travellers. There is no doubt that the main product here is fish and seafood, which you can find in its diversity at the old fisherman’s quarter of O Berbés or around O Pedra market.

One of the most interesting places  is Fish Street, which offers a unique spectacle when ostreras tirelessly open oysters on the street while preparing the dishes. You can buy oysters directly to them, give them a squeeze of lemon and you eat them accompanied by a good Albariño. There is no such a better pleasure!

But, although oysters are one of the products Vigo is better known for, we cannot forget mussels, modest and versatile. You can try them in many different ways at the mejillonería Tarugo (C/Carral, 9). Affordable portions and rare options are available, like the curry or beer mussels.

In order to eat the best seafood you should go to Bar el Puerto (Rua Arenal, 30). More than 50 years of experience attests to the recognition of this restaurant. When you seat at your table, you will find out there is no menu; the waitress will tell you directly the fish and dish of the day. Other well-recognized seafood restaurants in the area are Follas Novas or Casa Marco but, generally speaking, any option around here is worth going if you are looking for good seafood, at a reasonable price.

Furthermore, Vigo celebrates many food festivals and events during the year and is possible your visit coincides with one of these activities. The most popular is Fiesta del Mejillón (Mussel party) in Vigo, happening in September. In the same month, there is a party dedicated to seafood at the harbor in Vigo and another celebrating the best seafood cuisine at Bouzas quarter.

2. - Appetizers time

Visitar Vigo es una excelente oportunidad para disfrutar de un ritual inevitables como el aperitivo de tapas y cañas a los que los vigueses tienen una férrea devoción, especialmente los sábados y domingos por la mañana: el paseo y el aperitivo de antes de comer.

One of the most famous places to take an appetizer is the Don Gregorio café. The tables are full of icing must (mosto con guinda), which is what everyone orders here.

You can also go for an aperitif to Puerta del Sol or anywhere at Plaza Constitución and its surrounding.

3. - Terraces in Vigo

The people from Vigo are always aware of the weather to go to pleasant terraces when the sun shines. It is always a great pleasure in this city.

One of the nicest terraces are Grettel (Plaza de la Constitución, 10), right in the old historic quarter of the city, where you can enjoy a refreshing drink under the stone porch.

You can also sit at the terrace in Detrás do Marco (C/Londres), a bit hidden by the Principe street, to relax a bit, away from the crowd in she shopping area.

4. -Come up to a Furancho

Furanchos are venues or private homes in which buy excess wine or try on the spot accompanied by a good home cooked meal. Usually, served with tortillas, empanadas, meats, sausages and cheeses in a family atmosphere at a great price.In the area of Vigo ther is over a dozen to choose , in which attention is always exquisite!.

5. - And when night falls…

The best option is to visit one of the modern pubs and terraces in the city. For example, Albatros is a cozy and modern place with a nice view by the estuary. You can find it at the rebuilt seaport.

A place well worth discovering! Check out our flights here.

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“Barçalona”, the Blaugrana City

“Our friend and companion Mr Kans Kamper of the Foot-Vallsection of the Sociedad los Deportesand former Swiss champion wishes to organise some football matches in Barcelona” read an advert in the weekly newspaper, Los Deportes on 22 October 1899. Hans Gamper, now known as Joan Gamper, was the Club's Swiss founder, player and president, and a key figure in the destiny of the Barcelona football team. He was already a prominent soccer player in his own country and, when he moved to Barcelona in 1899 for business reasons, he refused to forego his passion. He published the above advert in an attempt to perpetuate the sport. As a result, the foundational assembly of FC Barcelona was held on 29 November in the Gimnasio Solè. Located in Montjuïc del Carme Street number 5 (on the corner of Pintor Fortuny, near the Ramblas and very close to the Canaletes fountain), these premises went on to become a garage until they were bought by a construction company in 1996, demolished and rebuilt to be used as office space. However, a plaque at the entrance reminds passers-by that this place saw the birth of one of the most admired football clubs in the world.

From La Escupidera to Camp Nou

After continuously moving from one venue to another, Barça finally bought some grounds in 1909 between the streets Comte d’Urgell, Villarroel, Coello – now Londres – and Indústria – now París – where the first stadium was built. It was commonly known as La Escupidera (The Spittoon), given its small size. With a capacity for 6,000 spectators, it was almost too small from the outset. The numbers attending matches were such that those left outside would climb the outer walls of the premises in order to follow the game. The bottoms of these enthusiasts were exposed to the street, in view of passers-by, which is why Barça supporters are now known as culés (“bottomers” in Catalan).

In view of this, FC Barcelona moved to a stadium in the district of Les Corts, situated in the block delimited by the streets Numància, Travessera de Les Corts, Vallespir and Marquès de Sentmenat. Inaugurated on 20 May 1922, the stadium could initially hold 60,000 spectators. This enlargement also turned out to be insufficient to seat all those who wished to enjoy Ladislao Kubala’s football. This football wizard ­– included in the Barça "Holy Trinity" completed by Johan Cruyff and Leo Messi – was influential in the demolition of the Les Corts field and the construction of Camp Nou. The location of theformer stadiumis now commemorated by a plaque on an apartment block in Numància Street.

The new blaugrana colosseum, with a capacity for almost 100,000 people, was inaugurated on 24 September 1957 and has become a symbol of world football. A few metres from the stadium, encapsulating the essence of the club, stands the Masia Can Planas – a country house from 1702 that was until recently the residence of the blaugrana stars. For more information on Barça’s different headquarters, click here.

Between Euphoria and Faith

In February 1930, the weekly newspaper “La Rambla” was founded by Barça's president-to-be, Josep Suñol, with its headquarters at Las Ramblas number 13. Today, these premises are occupied by Núria Restaurant, just opposite the Canaletes fountain. At a time when football matches were not yet broadcasted on radio, the employees of the newspaper would hang a board from their office balcony with the day’s results. This was the way culés used to find out how well their team had done. If the score was satisfactory, the celebration would start. Since then, and still today, Canaletes fountain is the epicentre of Barça euphoria. Legend has it that, if visitors drink from the waters of Canaletes, they will eventually return to the city.

To wind up the celebrations, the football stars would end up on the balconies of the Generalitat de Catalunya and Barcelona City Hall in Sant Jaume square. Players, coaches and executives would then go to the Mercè chapel, a Baroque church located in La Mercè square, adjoining Carrer Ample and Passeig de Colom, to offer the winning trophy to the city's patron saint. Not very far from there is the cathedral of Santa María del Mar. This beautiful Gothic church was attacked at the beginning of the Civil War and most of the stained glass windows were destroyed. The government of the Generalitat insisted on its restoration, which was financed by various wealthy families of the time and Barcelona institutions, such as FC Barcelona. As a token of gratitude, the club's emblem was placed on the window in the church sanctuary. Indeed, football is a question of faith.

Barcelona is no doubt one of the most football-mad cities in the world. You can breathe Barça everywhere. Come and see it for yourself! Check out our flights here.

Text by Oriol Rodríguez / ISABELYLUIS Comunicación

Images by Oriol Rodríguez, Juanedc, Maria Rosa Ferre, Jordi Ferrer, Enfo_34/ Fundació del FC Barcelona

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Abbey Road

The history of music is replete with places that have a mythical aura, that have earned a privileged position in every travel guide . In the majority of cases, these are not museums or big events or historical monuments but simple urban areas that have achieved a legendary status in the world of popular culture.

As with any list, there is an “unwritten” order that ranks the importance of each of these places and the most famous is, without a doubt, Abbey Road. A zebra crossing in a residential district of London that owes its international fame to a photo of the Beatles taken in 1969 and that became the iconic cover of their album recorded that same year at the Abbey Road studios (just across the street).

This zebra crossing has become a place of pilgrimage for every fan of the Beatles and people from all over the world usually cross it posing just like the Liverpool group to immortalise their visit to the UK capital. However the most fascinating thing is seeing how the sign displaying the name of the street has been transformed into a huge book of dedications of love and passion to the rock band, with texts written in every language imaginable. Also, there is a webcam on the flat roof of the studios that transmits 24 hours a day everything that is going on in the small section of such a famous street, thus further adding to its legendary status in this digital era.

Because London is not just Big Ben, Buckingham Palace or Piccadilly Circus, but also the history of pop music (thanks to its true legends).

Address: 3 Abbey Road, St. John’s Wood London NW8 9AY
Live webcam: http://www.abbeyroad.com/crossing

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By David Moreu

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Ghosts Of London's Past

Por Michael Schuermann de Easy Hiker

London is a great city for hikers. For one because there are so many scenic trails and nature reserves near-by – the Ridgeway, the South Downs Way, the New Forest – and for another because they are all so easy and convenient to reach by what is probably the world’s best public transport system. (I know the London urban and suburban rail networks get a lot of stick, but I still have to find another city in the world where it is as easy to get around even if you have no car.)

We will spend more time in London in the near future and intend to explore the walking trails of the area in some detail, although the more serious hiking trips will have to wait until the spring.

For the time being, however, we will keep things simple and start you off this week with two short walksalong the Thames, one in the east and one in the west, each roughly two to three hours long, allowing you to set out late, after a leisurely breakfast on a weekend for example, and still be back in time “for tea” to watch the afternoon soccer game “on the telly”. Are you still with me, “guv”?

Ghosts of London Past

Wapping in the east of the city has always been my favourite part of “walking London”. I have done this walk several times over the past twenty years or so, but it was never the same walk – because the area has changed and still changes so quickly.

This stretch of London – between the Tower and Greenwich – was once the most important hub of global trade, the place where shiploads after shiploads of coffee, tobacco and sugar from the British colonies arrived on their way to the European consumers.

The London docks were abandoned in the 1960s, and the area lay fallow, a barren industrial wasteland, for twenty years before it was redeveloped in the 1980s. When I came here first, a little over twenty years ago, this process was still very much ongoing, and the “docklands” at the time were a surreal blend of derelict industrial buildings, waste dumps, modern office developments and handsome 19th century mansions.

Nowadays, the docklands are very trendy and chic, but they are still nothing like similarly trendy and chic areas of West London. They are, for one, much less lively. Wapping High Street is a residential area, but when we went there, on a Saturday around lunchtime, we were almost the only people in the street, give or take the odd jogger. Between old warehouses, centuries-old taverns and narrow stairways that lead down to the river, you feel that ghosts are walking with you every step of the way.

Our walk starts at St. Katharine Docks in the back of Tower Hill station. Walk down the stairs on your left hand side, turn left in front of the moat of the Tower of London and simply follow the signs.

The three basins of St. Katharine Docks were developed in the 1820s when one of the largest London slums – with over 10,000 inhabitants – was razed to the ground. (The rubble of the destroyed dwellings, ironically, was used to lay the foundations for one of London’s most luxurious property development projects in Belgravia.)

The St. Katharine Docks were never a great commercial success – the gates to the river Thames were too narrow, preventing larger ships from entering – and, having been heavily bombed in WWII, never fully rebuilt and gradually abandoned.

They became, however, also the first of the London docks to be redeveloped as a leisure-plus-retail facility and the blueprint for all such projects since, in the capital and all across Britain. They are a very pretty sight indeed, particularly on a sunny day. (Unfortunately, we were not quite so lucky on our walk.)

Leave St. Katharine Docks in the back of the Dickens Inn through Thomas More Street and turn left into Wapping High Street along the Thames. Look out for Wapping Pier Head, two early 19th century brick buildings that were erected right on the entrance to the docks to accommodate leading dock officials and their families …

… and, a few houses down the road, the ancient Town of Ramsgate pub. The Wapping Old Stairs beside the pub – they lead down to the river – are said to be haunted: for many men, convicts on their way to Australia and drunks who were imprisoned in the pub’s cellar before being “press-ganged” into the navy, these stairs would have been the last things they ever saw of England.

A little further on, in the garden next to the modern HQ of the London River Police, the City of London used to execute pirates – not removing their bodies before three high tides had washed over them, as a kind of deterrent presumably. The infamous Captain Kidd was hanged here in 1701, and a couple of blocks down, there is a pub that was named in his honour. (Go check it out. It has stunning views over the Thames.)

Continue past some more old warehouses before turning right into Wapping Wall – look for London’s oldest riverside pub, the Prospect of Whitby – and crossing the bridge into Shadwell. (Another modern development, called Shadwell Basin, appears on your left.)

Immediately after the bridge, turn right in the direction of King Edward VII Memorial Park, and continue by the bank of the river with some spectacular views of Canary Wharf in the distance.

Turn left into Spert Street for Limehouse Basin, where this walk ends. There is a DLR station on your left hand side from where the trains of the “Docklands Light Railway” take you back into the centre of London within a few minutes.

By Michael Schuermann de Easy Hiker 

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