***These were reviewed by Independent Request
An avid traveller and advisor to the Barcelona Tourist Office, Raul Fattore has developed several guides to help prospective tourists to the city. There is some necessary overlap between the guides, but all are must haves if traveling to beautiful Barcelona. I found each of the guides easy to understand. Scattered throughout are beautiful colour pictures teasing you with the various sites.
*Save on Tours and Travel for Free, the first of Fattore’s Barcelona guides, introduces prospective travellers to the Barcelona Card and its many benefits. These cards seem to be around 60 US dollars, or 50 EU, for an adult ticket for three days, though there are different pricing options. BC cards can also aid in transportation, and may even allow you to skip in line depending on the attraction you are visiting. Later chapters suggest sites to see depending on how many days you have. There are things to interest just about anyone, and this guide can help optimise your trip. There are zoos and aquariums for the nature lovers, history museums and historical sites for the historians, and art museums for art buffs.
*Attractions for Less, and Even for Free is Raul Fattore’s second Barcelona guide. The information in the book is very similar to the first guide. Instead of arranging the sites in preset tours, they are listed individually with a bit more detail. Thirty sites are grouped by budget level, from low to high. This guide suggests the Barcelona Card, but it plays less of a part than with guides One and Three.
*Free Museums? Yes! is the third of the Barcelona guidebooks, and focuses on museums. Free is a bit of a misnomer, as such admission relies on a Barcelona Card. Purchasing one and planning your trips accordingly can certainly save you a pretty penny depending on what all you wish to see.
*The Gaudi Tour focuses solely on experiencing the brilliance of Gaudi’s works on a self-guided tour. It is recommended that two days be set aside to enjoy the full tour. The pics in this book are breathtaking. As you may have guessed, Gaudi was an architect and he built/ designed several wonderful buildings. Reading his history, and that of his works was quite interesting.
As with any travel guides, you will find the most value from purchasing the books beforehand and reading about the museums and attractions. This allows you to plan ahead. Information for each attraction includes history, rates, bus routes and other travel options, and hours of operation among other things. I find it quite amusing that, as I was reading through these, I had an opportunity to recommend them to some guests staying at the inn I work in.