The plan for Day 2 was to meet up with our friends who were also in Barcelona for a few days and head off to the ‘Capital of Cava’.
We left the hotel and stopped off for an American breakfast, why American I don’t know as there were no waffles or muffins included.
It was then to the Metro to get to the mainline train station.
My second mistake then happened – I got us on the tube going in the wrong direction again!
I know how I went wrong and it did not happen again.
We arrived at the main line station where our friends were already waiting for us.
Catching the train was not as simple as we anticipated.
We knew where we were going – Sant Sadurni d’Anoia .
The queues at the ticket office were long so we headed to the self-service machines to buy our train tickets.
Press the button the get to the first screen, select the English option, select the station, select return journey, select 4 tickets – yes easy, peasy – and only about 7 euros each for a 40 minute train ride.
Aah, the machine we were using didn’t take a card which my friend wanted to use.
We moved to the next machine which did take a card and the tickets quickly spewed out of the machine.
Which platform does the train leave from was the next challenge?
No maps to be seen and a long queue at the information office and we needed to be at our destination for a set time.
We spied a mobile help point without a queue and were told to catch the train from platform 7.
We set off to find a train already waiting at the platform so we quickly hopped on for our ten station stops to our destination.
We arrived at the first station and everyone got off the train!
We moved to the next platform and waited for the next train heading in our direction and after about 5 minutes it arrived so we got on board.
Two more stations down the line everyone got off again!
The third train got us to our destination with about 2 minutes to spare.
The Freixenet winery http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freixenet was directly across the road from the station.
Freixenet (pronounced Fresh- a –net) – producers of those distinctive black bottles – was our chosen destination as one of our customers used to work for the company for many years.
We joined a group of people for a tour of the winery; our guide was Carlos on the english speaking tour (although his accent was more American as he learnt from watching cartoons and films).
The tour, detailing the production of Cava (the first ‘a’ as in cat not car) lasted about 90 minutes and was very interesting. The winery had about 90 million bottles at some stage in the production process.
At the end of the tour we had to, just were forced to, sample the Cava.
We then stayed on for lunch, tapas, and sampled several other styles of their Cava.
A pleasant afternoon ensued before we called into the shop to buy a couple of bottles for bringing home and then we returned to the station to catch the train back to the city.
One train was only needed to get us back.
A quick pit stop back at our particular hotels before we met up together at a bar for a beer before searching out something to eat.
I had been given the name of a restaurant, at local prices, near to Las Ramblas but after a search around for 20 minutes we gave up and just picked somewhere to eat down a side road. Not brilliant but it did the trick.
A quick nightcap was had on the way back to the hotel.