I have been seeing these Airbnb Experiences pop up on my Airbnb feed every time I go on their website and I finally decided to try one out in Barcelona to see what it was all about.
There were several interesting and unique Airbnb Experiences like the sailboat sunset tour, history tour and a photography tour. I wanted to do all of them but only had time for one, so I chose the experience called Photoshoot in Barcelona Secret Corners.
I recently started doing more tours on my vacations since I'm traveling solo more often. I still can’t stand the large group tours but small group tours are more intimate and usually pretty informative. This photoshoot experience I chose would only have up to 6 people in the group, so I knew it would be a right fit for me. I also chose this tour because I would get some pictures of myself around Barcelona. Since I'm traveling solo, it’s a lot harder to take pictures of myself unless I set up a tripod somewhere. I can usually do this in less crowded cities but Barcelona is one of the top most visited cities in Europe, so there is always people around and it’s very crowded. There’s no way I can set up a tripod and even if I did find a location, I would be afraid someone would snatch the camera and tripod as I’ve heard from numerous people that Barcelona is known for professional pickpocketers.
Back to the tour…
The package included a walking tour around secret corners and the photographer would give you a little history of the city while taking your pictures. At the end of the tour, we would all enjoy some vermouth together.
The tour started at 11am and I met Valentina, the photographer, in front of Rusc de Turisme. To my surprise, we were only waiting for one other person, so it was just me and Javier on the tour which was wonderful.
We started walking toward the first spot, which was a beautiful mosaic mural created by Joan Fontcuberta. The story behind the mural was beautiful too as he asked locals to submit pictures through a newspaper article and the result was a collage of pictures on tiles turned into one big kiss.
Next, we walked around Gothic Quarter and took some pictures there as well. Javier was a model, so he knew how to pose in every photo. I later learned that he was having a rough morning because he was partying all night with his friends the night before and didn’t get home until 7am! What a trooper for coming out so early to walk around and take photos. The sun was pretty brutal this day too, so I’m sure that was challenging for him.
After Gothic Quarter, we crossed over to Born. Valentina told us that Born used to be a very shady area years ago but in recent years, young adults started buying property in the neighborhood and started turning the neighborhood around. Now, Born has many boutique shops and charming restaurants that tourists and locals love to visit. Born was probably my most favorite area of Barcelona. You get a sense of a local community here and there were some areas where there were photos on the walls showcasing pictures from local photographers. There’s also lots of alleys that have cute decorations like flags and star lights where Valentina took some pictures of us.
Before we went to our final destination, we stopped by a little restaurant called El Chigre 1769 and had a shot of vermouth. Vermouth is something you drink before a meal to clean your palette. This was my first time trying it and it was a little on the sweet side but not too sweet like port wine. Valentina told us that it contained 14% alcohol and I couldn’t believe it because it didn’t taste like it had that much alcohol at all.
Finally, we walked over to Parc de la Ciutadella and took some pictures by the pond. On our walk over to the park, Valentina shared some of her favorite restaurants and I also peaked in some restaurants in Born and Gothic Quarter to see what kind of food they served. There was one interesting restaurant called Euskal Etxea Taberna where you could try pinchos, which are little snacks with variety of toppings over a slice of bread. I noted down some other restaurants we walked by so I could stop by later for dinner.
The tour lasted for a total of 2 hours and it just flew by because I had such a great time chatting with Valentina and Javier. It was also great to know a little more about Barcelona and learn the little secret corners around Born. Plus, the pictures turned out great and it was exactly what I wanted! Also, a huge thank you to Valentina for holding my super heavy bag every single time it was my turn to take photos. My bag weighs about 10 pounds (no joke) because I always carry two cameras with me. Each time I handed her my bag, she smiled without hesitation. What a trooper!
If you haven’t checked out an Airbnb Experience, you need to. Of course, read the reviews first to see if it fits you. I highly recommend this photography tour because not only do you get to meet wonderful people but you also get to learn a little more about the city and receive beautiful pictures!
P.S. On this particular tour, I received a link to view all my pictures a week later and I was able to choose 25 images. If you would like to get the pictures sooner or order more images, they offer these services for an extra fee. Otherwise, everything else comes with the tour.