With a few days of leave in June and no plans, Joe and I made a last minute decision to visit my sister Lizzie and her boyfriend Jarett in Valencia, Spain, where they’ve been living for just under the past year. And what a great decision it was!

I didn’t really know much at all about Valencia, so left it up to Lizzie to plan whatever she fancied with us. She works from home, so was able to fit her work in around us and still manage to get out and about a lot, which was great.

We flew in to Madrid, and caught a quick flight across to Valencia with Iberia on standby (which was half the price of the train ticket!) and Lizzie came to meet us in the early evening.

It was a beautiful summer’s evening, and we walked back to her flat, admiring the pretty buildings and greenery along the way.

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Not too long ago I was rostered a lovely trip to Barcelona, and with my sister living in Valencia, it made perfect sense for her to come and stay on my layover there!

She took the train from Valencia to meet me, and was waiting in our hotel after we landed.

After a coffee in the room (who else loves it when hotels have a Nespresso machine in the room?!) and a catch up, we were ready to head out for some exploring.

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Barcelona is by far my favourite city in Spain (although I’ve only visited a couple) and when I saw it on my roster I was very happy! I actually lived in a town called Calella, which is around an hour from Barcelona, in 2010. I did an internship there in a hotel, and on lots of our days off we would hop on the train to Barcelona and hang out there for the day.

After a super easy flight which was less than half full, we arrived in the beautiful city!

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Our hotel is just opposite a large shopping mall, and with all the January sales going on, who could pass up an opportunity to visit the home of Zara!

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