Barcelona! For me, Barcelona evokes images of unique architecture, delicious food, and interesting people. I first became intrigued by the city in 1992 when Barcelona hosted the Summer Olympics. Barcelona was the last stop on our Grand Circle river cruise in the Bourdeaux region of France. It was an add-on along with Andorra, which I covered in the last blog posting. Kathy was the primary reason we added this to our trip. She was excited to see the Gaudi works, in particular, the Sagrada Familia basilica.
Barcelona's favorite son must be Antoni Gaudi. His unique architecture can be seen throughout the city. Gaudi was heavily influenced by his religion, which is visible in many of his projects. He used tile (often broken waste material), stained glass, and wrought iron in many of his works and he used three-dimensional models instead of blueprints.
|A model of Casa Mila used by Gaudi.|
Park Guell is a community designed by Gaudi for a wealthy businessman named Eusilin Guell. Our group spent a morning visiting the area.
|A tiled bench in Park Guell.|
|The porter's lodge.|
The most famous and spectacular project designed by Gaudi is the Sagrada Familia basilica. We spent most of a day in and around the basilica with about a hundred thousand of our friends. It is massive and very popular. The feeling of awe as you stand in the middle of the church is palpable, it is hard to keep from gaping. I hope we have a chance to visit it once construction is completed (est. for 2026, but I would bet it will take longer). The flow of the design and the stained glass are magnificent!
While Gaudi was the primary focus of the Barcelona portion of our trip, we also spent time at several local restaurants where we indulged in Tapas and a Spanish treat called "churros". The churro is a pastry that you dunk in hot liquid chocolate, fantastic!
|Kathy was forced to try a churro, the smile tells it all!|
No visit to Barcelona would be complete without a visit to the Picasso Museum. We spent a pleasant afternoon walking around the museum and listing to the audio guide. Picasso spent time in the city over several time periods throughout his life.
A surprise that was not on our itinerary was the "Gay Pride" festival that occurred on the weekend we were there. It was interesting to walk around and see the colors and the outfits worn by the participants. I must say they do have a great time!
|Do I really need a caption for this?|
As usual, I have an album of images from Barcelona here: Barcelona