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Cantabric Region Mallorca & Canarian Islands Valencian Community Catalonia Castilla & La Mancha Andalucia Basque Country Madrid Barcelona Fests & Traditions
Cantabric Region Mallorca & Canarian Islands Valencian Community Catalonia Castilla & La Mancha Andalucia Basque Country Madrid Barcelona Fests & traditions


Barcelona, flight Barcelona, holidays Barcelona, travel Barcelona, travels Barcelona, Montjuic, Gaudí, Batlló house, El Tibidabo, Barcelonete beach, Olympic City

City of constant renewal ...

Barcelona, located at the Mediterranean sea in the very north of the Spanish coast, is certainly the most cosmopolitan and economically most active city in this country. It has always proved its will to be modern, to follow the latest international tendencies or be ahead of them. To the tourist this is evident specially in its architecture, which so well reflects the general approach to life in this always pulsating city.

Of course, Barcelona has an old history, and there are monuments of Romanesque, Gothic and Renaissance periods or still before, but most characteristic is what has been built during the last, say, 100 years. Barcelona has been a center of Modernist architecture and is distinguished specially by the works of genial Antoní Gaudí, who together with his great contemporaries gave new and exciting looks to it, but has remained since then at the top of modernity. If you want to find out which are the very latest tendencies today - go to discover it here.

Barcelona: Sightseeing

Barrio Gótico

The Gothic Quarter is one of the oldest and most interesting parts of Barcelona. The square of Sant Jaume was Forum at the time of Romans, and there are many remains of old fortifications still to be seen, for instance the portal of "Plaça Nova". At this square there are as well the Palacio de la Generalitat and Palacio del Ayuntamiento (townhall).
In Calle Paradis, on top of the mountain Táber, you will find an old millstone. Here were living Iberian tribes long before the time of Roman empire.
At Plaza del Rei there are the
Palacio Real Mayor, Iglesia de Santa Agata and Palacio del Archivo de la Corona de Aragón, close to it the Gothic cathedral and the medieval palaces of Casa dels Canonges, Pia Almoina and Ardiaca.

Las Ramblas

This boulevard of a length of about 2 kilometers, between Plaza de Catalunya and the port, shows what is perhaps the quintessence of Barcelona. You will find here people of any age and social class, shoe shine boys, small stands selling flowers and vegetables, street-theaters, big business-galleries, cafeterias, terraces as well as some of the great theaters of the city. Specially interesting buildings are: the Academia de Sciencias (Academy of Science), with its giant watch from 1868, the gothic-baroque church de Betlem, and the Palacio de Moya with its beautiful halls and extraordinary wall-paintings. It is used frequently for expositions.
The Mercado de La Boquería is the most important and most visited market of Barcelona, while "Pla de la Boqueria" was the old center of town. In Palacio de la Virreina, today seat of the culture department of the regional government, frequently you can see expositions of art. Impressive is Casa Bruno Cuadros with its dragon at the front. You arrive to Plaça Reial, a beautiful square with arcades, palms, fountains and luxurious shops. Here lived in former times the bourgeoisie, but today it is the heart of an artists district and offers charming ambience with its pubs and typical bars. Sundays you may visit here a market for coins and stamps.

El Puerto

The port, located at the end of Las Ramblas, is dominated by the tower of Colón, from the top of which you have a fantastic view over Barcelona and the great boulevard Paseo de Colón.

El Ensanche

The modern center of Barcelona, built between 1870 and 1936, was planned by architect Cerdá, who wanted to create an luxurious district for the bourgeoisie and enlarged the city to five times its original size. All the streets here cross rectangularily, an unusual thing in European town planning. The best known monuments in El Ensanche are the works of Antoní Gaudí, as the great cathedral Sagrada Familia, Park Güell and Palacio Güell, together with Casa de los Punxes and Casa Amatler de Puig i Cadalfach, all of them masterworks of modernistic style. The central square is Plaza de Catalunya, of dimensions comparable to those of the Vatican in Rome, which stands symbolic for Barcelona's mentality of constant innovation and change. Regularly this square is modified, for the last time up to now in 1986. Then there are the Paseig de Gràcia, a wide boulevard with curious benches and banana plants, and La Diagonal, another boulevard that crosses all this district.


The mountain of Montjuic was the scenery of the World Exposition of 1929, for which was built the Pueblo Español. The buildings there represent all the architectonic styles typical for Spain. In 1992 the Olympic Games took place here. On top of the mountain, surrounded by beautiful parks, there is a fortress of 17th century.


You arrive to the top of this mountain by the only tramway that still exists in Barcelona, and find there one of the most famous and spectacular amusement-parks of Europe.

Parc de la Ciutadella

Here took place the World Exposition of 1868. Inside the park there are the Parliament of Catalunya, the statue of the "Lady with the Umbrella", various museums and the zoological garden.

The Barcelona of Antoní Gaudí

Antoni Gaudi was one of the most important modernist style architects worldwide. Many of his most extraordinary works are to be found in Barcelona.

Finca Güell
(1884-1887), "Av. de Pedralbes 77"
Through a narrow portal the visitor enters a fantastic world of forms and colors, which the genial architect created for his friend and sponsor, industrialist Eusebi Güell.

The portal of Finca Miralles
"Passeig Manuel Girona"
Only a small work for another friend of his, in an interesting contrast to "Casa Calvet", which was made during the same period of time.

(1900-1909), "C. Bellesguard"
Landmark of Catalonia. This gothic building, formerly summer-residence of king Martí I., was modified by Gaudí in genial harmony with the original.

Colegio Teresiano  
(1888-1889) , "Ganduxer, 87"
When he built this school, Gaudí evidently was inspired by gothic style and created a masterpiece of simple and clear lines.

Casa Vincens  
(1883-1888) , "Carrer de les Carolines 18-24"
Gaudí's first architectonic work, and a milestone in his carreer. The building reminds to a palace of an Arabian prince, but was made for the owner of a tile factory - material of which Gaudí made ample use.

Casa Mila  
(1906-1910) , "Passeig de Gràcia 92"
The irregularly curved walls of this building remind of dunes in the desert. When it was made, this building was too futurist for most people, and gained the nickname La Pedrera, "the quarry". Today it is considered a landmark work of modern architecture.

Casa Batllo  
(1904-1906) , "Passeig de Gracia 43"
Another futurist work, with no single straight line at its front. Even the walls are curved and seem to be covered by leather.

Casa Calvet  
(1898-1900) , "Carrer de Casp"
Perhaps the most traditional work of this master of extravagance. That might be the reason why Gaudí received for this building his one and only honorable mention by the city of Barcelona.

Palau Güell
(1886-1889) , "Carrer Nou de la Rambla 3-5"
Another work for Eusebi Güell. With its cupola, stairways and impressive windows it seems of giant dimensions, but its base is of only 18 x 12 meters.

Sagrada Familia  
(1883-1926) , "Plaça de la Sagrada Familia"
This great cathedral, inspired by gothic style yet a landmark of modern architecture,  is in reality not much more than a facade.  Gaudí died before he could finish his biggest and most beloved project, with galleries that should have room for 1500 singers, 700 children and 5 organs.
Will the city of Barcelona ever complete this monumental work?

Parc Güell
(1900-1914) , "Carrer d'Olot"
A fascinating scenario of gardens and overdimensional architectonic forms which seem to be born by the ground.  Gaudí created an equilibry that usually only exists in nature, but never in architecture.

Crypta Colonia Güell
This small chapel, wonderfully integrated in the landscape, may be visited at some 15 km from the city.

Barcelona: Excursions

In the region of the Vallés there are Cugat with its monastery of 11th century and the university of Bellaterra, and Terrasa with some interesting churches: the Romanesque church of Sant Pere with remains of 6th century in its interior, and the one of Sant Miquel with its extraordinary baptistery. The textile museum of Biosca, in the center of this area traditionally dominated by textile industry, reminds of the "industrial revolution". Sabadell offers an interesting paleontological museum and the monastery of Mare de Déu de la Salut.

In Badalona visit the monastery of Sant Jeroni de la Murtra and the Roman settlement of second century before Christ. There are more Roman ruins in Mataró, a blooming industrial town with beautiful medieval center. A very picturesque village is Arenys de Mar. The name, read reverse: Syrena, siren, points to the mythic mermaids.

Away from the sea, you arrive to the mountain ranges of Montseny, Montnegre and, specially remarkable, Montserrat, Photo the mythic "Holy Mountain", with its Romanesque Monastery de la Verge de Montserrat, famous place of pilgrimage.

Beautiful Sitges, with freshly whitewashed houses and wide beach, is one of the most traditional and beloved holiday places along all the Mediterranean coast. See as well the museum of Cau Ferrat, with a valuable collection of objects of metal, glass and paintings of the epoch of Modernism, and Palacio Maricel, home of a summer-university.

More places to visit from Barcelona are the Casino of Sant Pere de Ribes, the vineyards of Penedés with a wine-museum in Vilafranca and the home of the "Cava", the famous Spanish sparkling wine, Sant Sadurní d'Anoia.


Suggest: Barcelona, flight Barcelona, holidays Barcelona, travel Barcelona, travels Barcelona, Montjuic, Gaudí, Batlló house, El Tibidabo, Barcelonete beach, Olympic City, ...


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