Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Rollerblading in Barcelona - Palau Sant Jordi

 Technically, this could be titled Rollerblading with kids as it's a family activity that we do, but mainly geared towards the kids. It started last year, after we took them to the ice rink at Christmas two years ago. It's been a post I've had as a draft for absolutely ages, and just keep not getting round to publishing!!
Paved area outside Palau Sant Jordi - Barcelonasights blog

It's well known that Barcelona is a great city for wheels of the non-motorised variety - hundreds of skateboarders descend on the city each year and the lax laws and slight gradient the city is on makes it a perfect place to practise tricks and shoot videos.
Barcelona Sights Blog - rollerblading
So it's natural that skating also fits the bill. There are plenty of associations and events that revolve around skating (both inline and traditional) and even just two weeks ago there was a roller disco kind of event at Sant Antoni festival, but I wanted to focus here more on the wee ones. Obviously, before I go any further, I'd like to remind everyone - young or old -to always wear proper protection. Knee and elbow pads, wrist guards and a good helmet are a must, people (as shown by my fashionable lad here in the photos).
barcelonasights blog - rollerblading outside the olympic stadium
As a family, we've tried a few places to skate which I'll be adding to the blog bit by bit (when I remember to take photos of the places we go!) but so far, I don't think you can beat just in front of Palau Sant Jordi.
flagstones and concrete posts - barcelonasights blog

There are so many advantages to skating here, it's a really tough one to beat. First of all, it's huge. Literally, these pictures don't do it justice at all, and there are actually three different spaces you can skate on, all joined together but on slightly different levels. You can see from the snaps, that the place is almost entirely covered with smooth pinky flag stones, so great for beginners but still "urban" enough to practice (there are plenty of broken ones and drains to navigate). You can also see the decorative posts in the above pic, which are great for training the kids on curves/slalom and just getting them to practise changing direction in short spaces.

expansive flat areas ideal for skaters - barcelonasights

Another massive advantage is that you can almost always find a car parking space right outside for free, so if you are going in a car, there's no need to worry about that. I say almost always, unless there's a daytime event inside the Palau, or nearby Olympic Stadium. And even if you decide to take public transport, it's a quick hop up from Plaça Espanya on the escalators, or there are bus routes too which stop right outside. 

It never gets crowded  - just occasional tourists who come to admire the views towards the airport, or close ups of the telefonica needle. There is also a great ramp to one side of the Olympic stadium which is great to practice on and get used to different inclines and gradients. Perhaps the biggest advantage though - and remember I'm always thinking of the kids here - is that there's absolutely zero traffic. You don't have to worry at all about someone straying off, or not being able to stop at a traffic light or junction!! 

And while you're there, you can get some pretty snazzy shots of the Barcelona skyline, too, like this one below! 

needle and posts outside Palau Sant Jordi

Coming to Barcelona this spring? Check out BCN Rentals for some great deals on apartment rentals. 


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