La Sagrada Família
La Sagrada Família is an incomplete masterpiece of Gaudí. Incomplete because it is still being built, expected to be finished in 2026. La Sagrada Família harmonizes the nature with the religion, two subjects of big interest of Gaudí. As the name reveals “The Sacred Family” this building takes us to the catholic religion, Jesus, Mary and Joseph. The Sacred Family, the example we all should follow. The building can be separated in 3 big façades, each of them depicts a different episode of Jesus´life: The Nativity, The Passion and The Glory façades. The Nativity façade is focused on Jesus’s birth, The Passion Façade is dedicated to Jesus’ crucifixion and resurrection and the Glory Façade expresses the Glory of Jesus, representing the road to God: Death, Final Judgment and Glory. And there are still the spires and the doors of the Glory Façade, so much more symbolism to each little detail that is hard to focus is all of them.
Inside the La Sagrada Família there is a game among the lights of the stained glass with the architectural columns that represent tree trunks – which creates the sensation of being inside a forest. In here, the sensation of quietude, serenity and reflection are the main goals. Inside this cathedral you can also find the tomb of Antoni Gaudí. La Sagrada Família is definitely an unique masterpiece not comparable to any other.
See more in their website: https://sagradafamilia.org/en/home
Park Güell and Gaudí House-Museum
To understand a little bit of why this place is important and why Antoni Gaudí has made a huge impact in Barcelona:
Antoni Gaudí was a Spanish architect that is known as the greatest exponent of Catalan Modernism. So many of his creations are spread through the city, giving to Barcelona the status of a one-of-a-kind stylish city.
Gaudí House-Museum was the residence of Gaudí between 1906 and 1925. We didn´t have a chance to visit it because we didn’t book the tickets in advance (read the section Barcelona – Tips and Ideas).
Park Güell was designed by the same architect and was built from 1900 to 1914, and officially opened as a public park in 1926. In 1984, UNESCO declared this place as a “World Heritage Site”. The view of Barcelona from the top of this park is incredible. Park Guell reflects the naturalist phase of Gaudí. During this time, he got inspired by the organic shapes found in nature. Every detail in his creations has a meaning, a reason to be there.
Park Güell is a free public park, you don’t need to acquire tickets to visit it.
Passeig de Gràcia
Passeig de Gràcia is one of the most famous boulevards in Barcelona. In here you can find remarkable architecture such as “La Pedrera” and “Batló House”, creations of Antoni Gaudí. This street is also a very important commercial part of Barcelona, with luxury fashion stores.
In this area we visited:
La Pedrera or Milà House
- The let down first: the tickets price – 25 euros and this was the reason why we haven’t entered into the building
- Other than this there is no other “bad” aspect: the architecture of the building is amazing- from outside and from the pictures we saw on the internet afterwards. We still got a sneaky peak of the entrance and it looked very luxurious. The building has a balcony that can be accessed by the visitors, even though on the day we came here it was raining.
- “La Pedrera” was the last private residence designed by the architect Antoni Gaudí and was built between 1906 and 1912, requested by its owners Pere Milà and Roser Segimón, the reason why this building is also called Milà House.
- Antoni Gaudí changed the project many times, making the process very difficult which included legal and financial problems due to his “innovative ideas”. However, this project went ahead and in 1984 “La Pedrera” was declared a World Heritage site by UNESCO.
Adress: Passeig de Gràcia, 92
The prices of tickets to visit this Gaudí masterpiece is 25 euros, as in “La Pedrera”. Even though we thought it was a bit expensive, there was a big queue to enter, so be aware you may have to wait. This amazing creation appeared by a remodel of a previous building that was there. It was redesigned in 1904 and ready in 1906.
The colors and decorative finishes show the connection that Gaudí felt by the nature and its organic shapes. The name of the house “Batló” was originated by the family name that was lived in the building – the Batló family. It was actually the owner who requested the remodeling not imposing any limits, since he wanted an unique building, one that couldn’t be compared to any other.
Adress: Passeig de Gràcia, 43
I have loved this museum. Close to the “La Pedrera” this museum can be easily missed. But don’t be mistaken by its exterior, because the collections exposed inside are brilliant. Even though it is not a huge museum, it is considered one of the best Egyptian museums in Europe. The different exhibitions give you the image of the life and customs of the ancient Egyptian civilization.
This museum is separated in 3 exhibition areas, with permanent and temporary exhibitions. When we visited this museum the temporary exhibition was called: “Tutankhamon, Historia d’un Descubrimiento” (Tutankhamon, the history of a discovery). In here was explained how the tomb of Tutankhamon was found and the excavations that happen, including the mysterious deaths associated to a mummy course. It was super interesting. And, the mummy of the Tutankhamon was also there. Do not miss this museu!
Adress: Carrer de València, 284
The Gothic quarter in Barcelona is the old/medieval part of the city. Dates back over 2,000 years and its streets are full of charm, life and captivating history. In here you can find lots of restaurants, local shops and much much more. You will never get tired of this part of Barcelona and you can always find a cute hidden ally every time you pass by. It is in the Gothic Quarter you find the cheapest but delicious food.
Santa Maria del Mar church
This church was built between 1329 and 1383. It is a remarkable example of the Catalan Gothic – from the outside this church give an impression of massive severity that belies the interior – where the impression of light and spaciousness is felt. This church is located in one of the narrow streets of the Gothic Quarter, making difficult to have an overall impression.
Adress: Plaça de Santa Maria, 1
Las Ramblas is the most famous boulevard of Barcelona, connecting the Port Vell and the Plaza de Catalunya. This vibrant street is full of restaurants and attractions. The Erotic Museum, La Boquería – a famous market, the El Corte Inglés and art galleries such as the Centre d’Art Santa Monica can be found when you walk along Las Ramblas.
The Mercat de Sant Josep de la Boquería, most known as “La Boquería” is a large and colorful public food market. This is one of the biggest and most famous food markets in Europe. This place is so busy, loud and vibrant, making it almost a overload to our senses. There are so many different stalls, of fruit, sweets pastries, milkshakes, it is amazing what you can get here. You can eat delicious, tasty food for a very good deal. This food market is a place than anyone can miss if visiting Barcelona.
Adress: La Rambla, 91
The Erotic Museum
Located in the famous boulevard of Barcelona, “Las Ramblas”, this museum was set up with the purpose of providing an educational and recreational space focusing on eroticism. There is exhibited a very impressive collection of historical artifacts, including sculptures, carvings and posters, among others). depicting sexually explicit scenes from different cultures and ages. You will be embraced by the sexual culture and the differences that happen from the Ancient Egyptians to the 21st century.
We still spent quite some time watching a pornographic movie from the 1930’s/1940’s, displayed on one of the rooms of the Erotic Museum.
Adress: La Rambla, 96 bis 08002 Barcelona
This 60 meters statue can be found at the end of “Las Ramblas”. This monument was constructed as part of the ceremonies in 1888, when the Universal Exhibition was held in Barcelona (as the Arc of Triumph – see below).
Inside the column there is a lift that can take you to the top where you will have panoramic and beautiful views of Barcelona. This monument is in honor of Columbu’s first journey to America.
Adress: Plaça Portal de la pau, s/n, 08001 Barcelona
The Maritime Museum can be found in the building of Drassanes Reials de Barcelona, dedicated to shipbuilding between the 13th and 18th century. During the late 16th century a new building was constructed on top of the old medieval dockyard and this building is what gives the structure to the current one – this was found out during excavations in 2012.
The maritime museum reopened in 2014 after the shipyard’s restoration had finished in 2013.
Adress: Av. de les Drassanes, s/n, 08001 Barcelona
Arc de Triomf de Barcelona
The Arc of Triumf rises up majestically in the middle of the city. Its colours are amazing.
This arc was built in order to function as the gateway of the Universal Exhibition held in Barcelon in 1888, specifically in the Park of the Citadel.
A monument with classical forms and proportion but with sculptures and decorative finishes full of symbolism.
Adress: Passeig de Lluís Companys, 08003 Barcelona
“La Barceloneta” Neighborhood
In the Barcelona District you can find lots of restaurants and also a lot to visit. These are some examples:
- La Barceloneta beach
- The W Hotel’s emblematic silhouette
- The Marenostrum tower
- The Museum Of Catalan History
- Port Vell and a walk along the yachts
- The aquarium
- The historical center of La Barceloneta
Barceloneta beach is the oldest and most famous beach of Barcelona. Located in the traditional fishing district “La Barceloneta”. This area is vibrant, busy and full of live. The Barceloneta beach is a lovely place to relax and enjoy the weather while eating some “tapas”.
The Museum Of Catalan History
As expected by by the name of this museum, in here it’s shown and explained the history of Catalonia from the Stone Age until the present day. Different exhibitions recreating different episodes of history are presented. On the top of this museum there is a cafe with a lovely view of the marine and surroundings.
Adress: Plaça de Pau Vila, 3, 08039 Barcelona, Spain
Montjuïc is a hill in Barcelona. Montjuïc is the birthplace of the city, it was here the city born and grew. This hill is also referred to as “Jewish Mountain” in Latin and Catalan documents. Remains of a medieval Jewish graveyard have been found in Montjuïc.
In here you can find:
- Fundació Joan Miró (modern art museum)
- Montjuïc Cemetery
- The Botanic Gardens
- The Museum of Ethnology
- The Catalan Museum of Archaeology
- The Olympic Sports Museum
- Montjuïc Castle
To get to Montjuïc: Best way is getting the funicular and to the castle the cable-car for an amazing view.
This castle is an old military fortress. It was built in 1640 and it currently serves as a municipal facility. This castle is a “must-go” place to visit not only because of its history value but also for the amazing view of Barcelona you get from here.
Museu de la Xocolata (Chocolate Museum)
The chocolate museum can be found in the former Sant Augustí monastery. This museum takes you in a journey from the arrival of chocolate in Europe to the importance and the impact that this product have on the society. It is exhibited amazing sculptures made entirely of chocolate and there are incredible.
One of the best parts – the ticket – made of chocolate, so you can kill the desire to eat chocolate, because you WILL be craving chocolate.
Adress: Carrer del Comerç, 36
Agbar Tower or Glòries Tower
This tower is a symbol of Barcelona’s modern face. It was designed by a French architect: Jean Nouvel. Its construction started in 1999 and it was inaugurated in 2005. This tower is tall – 142 meters height to be precise – and it is looks spectacular when illuminated at night.
Adress: Avinguda Diagonal, 211
Temple Expiatori del Sagrat Cor (Temple of the Sacred Heart of Jesus)
I didn’t have a chance to visit this place, since it is a bit far from the city. Maybe you need to take a full day. I had the opportunity to see it at distance from the Montjuic Castle. Since I came back from Barcelona I looked at some pictures of this place and it looks amazing and that is why I am mentioning it here. I didn’t have the opportunity but may you do.