Before Raul dropped us off in Logroño, we made a pit stop in Laguardia. Named for “the guardian”, Laguardia is sited at the top of a hill and has a wall protecting the town. As someone who studied historic preservation and architectural history and urban design, I loved exploring.
Raul imparted so much knowledge, not only about wine, but also Spain, history, geography, and other pop culture nuggets. Did you know that Logroño is not only the only city in Spain that has a masculine name (in that it ends in an “o”), but it is also the Las Vegas of Spain when it comes to bachelor parties? Fact.
I cannot emphasize enough how much we enjoyed our tour from Wine Tourism Spain (not #spon). I loved that the husband was able to pay for the tour and it included two days of food, lodging, travel, wine tours, admissions, and train tickets from Logroño to Barcelona after the tour concluded. We were in a Peugeot van for much of the trip and I appreciated that our tour guide was very intuitive in telling whether we were tired and napping or wanted to talk about wherever we happened to be traveling through. I would also like to point out that I felt very safe in general, and as a passenger in the car. Raul was able to upgrade our suite in Logroño at Hotel NH Logroño Herencia Rioja and as honeymooners. we were also very generously gifted a bottle of very fine wine.
The next day we departed Logroño to Barcelona on train. I would suggest arriving for this one a mere thirty minutes before the train departs; being the anxious traveler that I am, I insisted in getting to the station as solid hour and a half early. I loved that the station had a restaurant serving wine and beer, as well as offering WiFi. It was well worth standing in line at the customer service desk to ask about the boarding process and where exactly our (assigned) seats would be on the train.
The train travel took four hours. WiFi on the train was unavailable; I would highly suggest preloading your iPad with books and video content. Once we arrived in Barcelona, we taxied to the Hilton Diagonal Mar. The next day we walked to the Cathedral. I don’t love crowds, so we took a lap around the exterior and retired for some sangria at a nearby restaurant.
We spent our last full day in Spain at the hotel pool, where I drank my body mass in sangria and finished The Hopefuls. Lazing around the pool, this may have been my favorite day of the honeymoon and I think my husband secretly agreed. (He is as obsessed with reading as I am, and I know he also finished a book.) We topped off our day of leisure with some next level seafood paella.
Let my last words be this: if you are departing Barcelona and are leaving for the airport during rush hour, leave an hour earlier than you think is necessary and save yourself the anxiety. Only because we were flying in the Delta One cabin were we able to bypass the lines in coach check in and baggage drop and again in security. If you have a six hour layover in JFK as we did, do as we did and go to the Delta Sky Club – always worth it.
And the husband de-boarded the plane in Philadelphia with a cold. Cough syrup for two, por favor!