Barcelona & Catalonia Photo Adventure Vacations – Inspire, Create and Learn.
Barcelona is the place to go for visitors looking for a modern city with a strong sense of tradition. Here you will find the most eccentric architecture ever designed, no less that 9 UNESCO World Heritage sites, exciting markets, Roman, Gothic, Modernist and Bohemian influences, unique local fiestas and an unrivaled choice of options for eating, drinking and nightlife. Most photographers who visit this city are quite overwhelmed by the sheer number of photographic opportunities it has to offer. Each neighborhood has a unique footprint though somehow they manage to harmonize with each other. Barcelona should be at the top of any photographer’s list who wants to capture stunning images.
When people think of Barcelona, they tend to overlook what lies just north of this fabulous city. There are not many places where you will find wild coastal areas, mountain ranges, ski resorts, flatlands, pristine forests, deltas and volcanic regions, all in one province. Catalonia (Cataluña) is one such exception. In addition to the stunning and varied natural beauty on display, we will explore Girona and Olot, the medieval villages of Banyoles and Santa Pau, as well as moving on to the spectacular mountain range of Montserrat and the beautiful beaches of Sitges. The avid photographer will experience atmospheric light, local fiestas, excellent cuisine and a proud people. The rural beauty and quaint medieval villages are included in our 4 day Catalonia extension.
This adventure is designed not only to guide you to the most photogenic locations carefully planned for the best light, but to aid you in mentally visualizing a scene before capturing the decisive moment. Our aim is to raise your awareness and spark your creativity so that you not only go home with images to be proud of, but use your new found skills to improve and expand your photographic technique in general. Apart from the technical aspect of learning your camera settings and capabilities, you will learn how to turn an ordinary image into an extraordinary image by using your own creativity.
In addition, you will become knowledgeable on how to survey the landscape, utilize and approach your environment, photograph people indigenous to the region and the cultural considerations and challenges of photographing in a foreign country. Our time together will include individual and group discussions, inspiring ideas and great fun. We cannot think of a better location to express your creativity than the city of Barcelona and the magical region of Catalonia.
BARCELONA 6 DAYS
Day 1 | Gothic Quarter Barceloneta – Royal Palace
We meet in the morning at our hotel in Barcelona, where we will discuss PWA’s “10 Guiding Principles to Great Photography” as well as our “THE ART OF SEEING” photographic technique. From here we will set out for a pleasant day of shooting that starts at Plaza Cataluña before walking down the famous Ramblas and through the old town until we reach the port in the Barceloneta neighborhood. Here we will explore the modern seafront and surrounding areas. During lunch we will have informal discussions on what our guests are trying to achieve in their photography, subject matters, styles and techniques. After lunch we will head to the Ciutadella park to relax in this beautiful setting before making our way to the Arc de Triomf to photograph the locals with great background interest and soft light. In the evening we celebrate with our “Welcome Dinner” in at one of our favorite restaurants. Afterwards we will photograph the spectacular light, water & music spectacle at the Magic Fountain, and then head up to the Royal Palace that now houses the Catalan National Art Museum to get fabulous viewpoints over the city and the fountain. (D)
Day 2 | Gaudi – Sagrada Famillia – Diagonal Mar
Our second day in Barcelona will include exploring more of the city’s neighborhoods, including environmental portraits and modernist influences that Barcelona is renowned for. We will incorporate different shooting styles, camera settings and techniques. Our day will begin at Gaudi’s Casa Mila where we will photograph the chimney stacks and ventilation towers on the roof. Afterwards, we will walk up the Passeig de Gracia to capture photogenic details and contrast in this beautiful street. Other modernist sites we will visit include Casa Battlo, Casa Amatller and a visit to the stunning Hospital de San Pau before arriving to the Sagrada Familia, where we will experiment with different ways to capture this amazing church as the setting sun hits the towers. In the evening we will do a night photography session, capturing images using moving light through the high-tech sector at Diagonal Mar & the Forum. (B)
Day 3 | Boqueria Market – Gothic Quarter – Borne District
On day three, we will start at the exciting Boqueria market and capture the chaotic energy as the locals go about their routine. From here we will head to the Gothic quarter and pass by street performers, Roman & Gothic architecture, narrow alleyways and open courtyards filled with atmospheric light. This area has one of the best preserved Gothic footprints in Europe, and will make for some stunning images. Also located nearby is the old Jewish quarter where any Jewish presence for over 600 years has been lost in the ancient stones. This is the site of the oldest Synagogue in Europe. After a Tapas lunch, we will explore the Borne district where you will see the most authentic side to Barcelona. Here you will find designers, violin makers, art studios, fashion houses, graffiti covered locales and the stunning Catalan Music Palace amongst other photogenic sites. (B)
Day 4 | Park Guell – Gracia District – Raval
Today, as the morning light arrives, we will capture Gaudi’s masterful symmetry of architecture & nature at Park Guell. Here you will find the mosaic ceramic style that he used to decorate his designs, as well as twisted metal, stone and colored glass, all harmonized with the surrounding flora. On leaving the park, we will visit the Gracia district to walk the streets and photograph the small plazas of this bohemian neighborhood. Gracia also houses Casa Vicens, another unusual modernist structure with a fantastic wrought iron gate in the shape of a dragon. After lunch, we will visit the oldest district in Barcelona, called Raval. This neighborhood is an area with a large community of non-Spaniards who have brought their own flavor to Barcelona and have made it quite different than the other neighborhoods. (B)
Day 5 | Sitges – Barcelona – Montjuic
On day five we will take the train out of the city to visit the beautiful seaside town of Sitges. Here we will enter the old village to photograph the narrow white-washed streets and seafront. Sitges is known as the Monte Carlo of Spain, and although many visitors come especially around carnival time, it has not lost it’s charm. After a lunch by the seafront, we will explore more of the town. On our return to Barcelona we will take the cable car from the port to spend time visiting the beautiful mountain & castle at Montjuic. This is a great retreat from the city, with it’s pine trees, gardens, olympic village and various sites of natural beauty. In the evening we will celebrate with our “Farewell Dinner” and one of our favorite Spanish restaurants. (B) (D)
Day 6 | Barcelona
On day six, we set out to photograph Barcelona at sunrise as the city is awakening. Upon our return to our hotel, we enjoy breakfast and our final group discussion, review our past weeks photos, trade contact information and bid you farewell. We urge you to extend your stay in Barcelona or elsewhere in Spain and make good use of everything you will learn on our photo adventure. (B)
Experience | Difficulty
Beginner, amateur, enthusiast and semi-pro photographers
DSLR, mirrorless, compact or iPhone cameras
Travel by metro, car or minibus
No elevation changes and lots of walking
(non-photographers also welcome)
Travel, landscape, architecture, seascape and people photography
Professional photographer | guide
Photo walks & discussions
Small group size (4-8 guests)
4 or 5 star hotels
2 or 4 Dinners
Barcelona – Pulitzer Hotel, Hotel Banys Orientals, Acta Atrium Palace or similar
Girona – AC Hotel Palau de Bellavista or similar
Besalú – Mas El Guitart or similar
Arrival & Departure Airport: Barcelona (AMS) – Transfer time to hotel 30min
Our adventure begins at 11 AM on the first day and ends at noon on the last day.
Travel Visa: A visa may be required depending on your nationality.
Single Supplement: $700 (6-Day)
(Optional) Early Arrival Hotel Room: $350
(Optional) Late Departure Hotel Room: $350
Options and Benefits
Private Guided Tours & Adventures
We offer amazing private guided photo adventures, cultural tours and vacations for individuals, couples, families and groups. We can customize any of our published adventures, as well as others, to meet your individual needs, schedule, budget and interests. This may include the finest 5-star accommodations, business-class travel, and private guides and fixers who are able to make the impossible possible. If you are not interested in a photo-centric vacation, but you love our approach to private travel, we will be happy to design and deliver an amazing adventure focused on travel, culture and cuisine.
We offer travel insurance through Travelex. The cost for travel insurance can be as low as 4% of the total trip cost, depending upon age and other factors. Knowing you have trip cancellation coverage can make a big difference should you have to cancel for some unforeseen reason. Travelex Insurance Services is a BBB Accredited business with an A+ rating.
Street, Landscape and People Photographer
Born in Jerusalem, raised in London and spending most of his time since a teenager traveling around the globe, you could say that living in Barcelona for the last 10 years has been the longest time that you could find Laurie in one spot!
Combining his extensive travels with his photography background, Laurie has been offering photography tours for over 20 years. He enjoys nothing more than using his experience to aid photo enthusiasts in the technical and creative skills needed to turn an ordinary image into an extraordinary one – all the while guiding his students to Barcelona’s most photogenic locations.
His first foray in photography started when he was just 13. He documented his adventures when he sailed with his brother, father, and Ruby the family dog, from England to Israel on a 3.5 month sailing trip on their yacht. With a deep connection to the sea, and still a teenager, he set about his first freelance business in Southeast Asia where he offered underwater photographic tours to divers using the Nikonos underwater camera system. Since then, he has been a photo tour guide in some of the most exotic locations found anywhere on the globe.
As well as using professional DSLR’s and lenses, Laurie considers himself a purist and still uses his film cameras on occasion. He tries to convey on his tours that it is not the equipment that makes a great image, but what the photographer is trying to achieve before they even take the lens cap off the camera. A difficult thing to achieve, with so many photographic opportunities in this amazing city.