The cup game is played on the street on the la rambla, and it's the game where they have three cups or three matchboxes and you need to guess where a small ball is hidden. The thing is that they trick you into believeing that you're actually winning alot of money until you suddenly bet to high and they, with their small quick little thief fingers switch the boxes so you loose the box where the ball is, and poof, you're money is lost to a silly game!
Unique Suggestions Don't play... If you feel tempted to play, then watch some one else play first, and see how easy it seems to win at first but then suddenly the tourist will start loosing money! I say, if you want to spend your vacation money on something this stupid, then do it..
Fun Alternatives Walk down the la rambla, watch all the funny clowns and artists that do alot of fun stuff to collect money. We saw alot of those standing-still-statue-people, and they looked all exactly like staues. We also saw a spanish dancer, a devil and an angel playing chess, and a clown scared the h*ll out of me.. They also sell a lot of wierd stuff there, like puppies and birds that eventually will grow huge, emu's I think they're called...
When I was reading about Barcelona in travel guides, it sounded as “Las Ramblas” where THE place to be. So of course when we arrived this is the first thing we decided to do… and I was extremely disappointed. “Las Ramblas” is just a big avenue, full with tourists, street performers, pickpockets and prostitutes. You are bothered every two seconds by someone who wants to sell you something, or give you a flyer for a “pub crawl”. Boring ! It is such a tourist trap !
Barcelona has much better to offer...
Unique Suggestions But if you still want to go, just don’t take any bag or extra money and don’t stop to look at performers or people playing money games on the streets. And avoid restaurants in the area who are of course more expensive.
yes im currently in Barcelona and las ramblas, well, i wont be going back to that area.. ever again! this is my second time in barcelona and todays events have certainly put me off going back. las ramblas is a street of unimaginable theft. i was walking down las ramblas and my mother and i are pretty wary about pickpockets etc and were certainly not stupid. there are many acts and markets stalls along las ramblas and eventually you will become relaxed and absorbed into the atmosphere. as my mother and i stopped to watch one of those performing artists someone reached into my mothers bag and swiped her purse. this wasnt down to stupidity but to the fact that these thieves are professionals. once your targeted they wait until you least expect it; taking a simple photograph or taking some coins out of your purse to give to the performers. my advice, dont ever let your guard down on las ramblas EVER. dont take photos, the performers arent that great and dont give money to them because once your wallets been spotted they will want your wallet! we had to cancel all my mums credit cards and we lost €300 cash plus some personal photos.
I'd heard about some of the expensive/rip off restaurants on Las Ramblas, however I had been up to Montserrat and got back late, was tired and my daughter and I wanted to eat somewhere close to the Plaza Catalunya. After a short walk down one restaurant was advertising what appeared to be a Paella for 2 at a reasonable price. I got hit nearly 12 Euros for a small bottle of spanish (house) wine that should have cost about 3-4 no more. A simple meal for two ended up costing over 40 euros. Avoid the Ramblas....
Unique Suggestions Try the freshly squeezed fruit juices for 1 euro in the market or one of the fruit platters, really good value and delicious.
Fun Alternatives If you need to eat in this area then go to La Fonda, get there early or expect to queue, it does close for a few hours inbetween lunch and the evening (closes about 3pm if I remember correctly). Three of us had a fab 3 course meal with loads of wine, Paella, Ensalada, Pollo etc for 35 euro. The establishment is a training restaurant for a Barcelona University, all the chefs and waiting staff are students but the service is excellent as is the food...
I hate to say, but 65 euros later we left completely disappointed.
- First of all, the food was mediocre. Do not get me wrong, the salads (house salad, asparagus/ham salad) were quite good, but House Paella (18 euro per person, with minimum order for 2 people) was NOT. Seafood was old and rice tasteless.
- Secondly, we felt rushed. Waiters were nice and polite, but they kept coming to the table, eager to clean, thus making us feel we need to finish faster.
- Thirdly, the prices were quite high. I think 65 euros for a meal for two (NO alcohol) is too much.
Also, bare in mind that it is one of those places were they charge you for at least 2 pieces of bread (1 euro each), even if you have not eaten them. So, just send the basket away, if you do not plan on eating it.
Avoid this restaurant if possible. Menus seem to be reasonable at first sight, but none of the beverages have any prices listed. They get you with the large sodas(with many straws in them). When we got our bill (party of 9) we were shocked to see that they charged us $9.75 Euro dollars per soda which was more then some of the items that we ordered to eat. That's about $12.40 per drink times 9 persons came out to $111 US dollars.
Unique Suggestions If you have to go to any restaurant around Las Ramblas always check the beverage menu and ask for prices when not listed.
The Ramblas was kind of ghetto to me--just full of souvenier kiosks and creepy street performers.
Unique Suggestions Keep away from the street performers--just walk by them.
Fun Alternatives One street over, the Placa del Angel had nice shops and beautiful buildings to look at.
On Las Rambles you will see people gathered in a circle. There are several people involved, the person running the game and the other con's looking like tourists. They play a game similar to finding the pea or ball under the cup or shell. They make it appear as though the make beleive tourists are actually winning however, (DON'T beleive it for a minute). Once the unsuspecting real tourist is convinced that the others are winning they also place bets. Guess What? the real tourist never wins it's all bait and switch. I will admit it is amusing to watch but don't even think for one second that you will win.
Unique Suggestions Watch only. Don't get me wrong....... Las Rambles is wonderful and safe. Just be aware of the above mentioned con game.
Fun Alternatives Do experience all that Las Rambles has to offer. See the street performers, sit down and have a drink at the outside cafes and people watch. You would do better not to eat on Las Rambles as it is know as a tourist area, therefore, prices are inflated.
Don't get me wrong, Las Ramblas is a wonderful place to stroll, take in the sights, smells, and sounds. But many of the shops along the way were full of junk!! I did not buy one decent t-shirt because I was so disgusted! LOL
Its really not worth the trip and the wine they gave you with the show is awful. I should have asked for water or fruit juice instead. The dance is not good and I saw half the people there fell asleep on the show.
Watch out for the card scam's going on in La Ramblas. There are usually 6-8 involved & the start playing 'find the lady' one 'punter' will put money down on a card & win, the next go he gets distracted & asks you which card to put his money he wins again, then he says to you have a go, that's when you are snared & so is your money. Also beware of pickpockets.
Unique Suggestions If you get asked say 'I wasn't watching' & walk away.
It depends what you want out of the trip but I personally found Las Ramblas really nasty. In my opinion it's one of the worst parts of town but for some reason there seem to be loads of tourists.
We went up there one day on the way to somewhere and stopped off for lunch. The service was very poor and I felt the food was overpriced.
There were loads of gypsies begging, which I found off putting and intimidating.
The street bands can be quite fun but they tend to move from cafe to cafe and always come around at the end for tips so you could end up paying a fortune out.
They say it's the worst place for crime and I'd agree. Luckily were weren't targetted but walking up there that one day I spotted 2 of the con tricks we'd read about in our guide book. I was amazed at the amount of people who weren't looking after their bags etc.