One of the places we have always wanted to visit was Barcelona, so last year when planning a Mediterranean cruise, we made sure that we picked one that began and ended there. Our plan was to fly into Barcelona on the day we embarked and then spend 3 days there when we returned to port. We barely made our cruise due to a 3 hour flight delay out of Boston. We missed our connection in Munich and thanks to a great Lufthansa employee, we caught a Spanair flight that got us on the boat 20 minutes before it left port. As a result, we barely got a glimpse of Barcelona that day so I wasn't really sure what to expect when the cruise ended. The day we disembarked, we carried on a tradition that we started many years ago when first visiting a new city. This tradition is to see if there is a "hop-on, hop-off" bus and, if so, ride it our first full day in the city. These buses tour the city all day to its most famous attractions allowing the riders to hop off wherever they want and hop back onto a later bus. This works well as we can get a feel of the city and get a sense of what we would like to explore further the following days.
Barcelona, also known as the "City of Counts", amazed us with the diversity of architecture. The architecture ranged from gothic architecture to modernism to some of the world's more bizarre buildings including the surreal Sagrada Família church.
This shot was taken from the upper level of the hop-on, hop-off bus near the end of the day when the sun was beginning to set. It is a HDR from a single shot since getting off a bracketed sequence from a moving bus is virtually impossible. I have become reasonably good in getting decent shots by shooting off 5 shots at a time hoping that one of the shots is a keeper.