We have just returned from five days spent in Barcelona. It was our first visit to the city and only our second time in Spain. The stay was long enough to absorb the atmosphere and learn our way around. With the highly recommended Top 10 Barcelona by Eye-Witness, we were able to discover wonderful little corners, bustling markets, gorgeous architecture, must-not-miss sites and fabulous museums, not to mention some outstanding restaurants and cafes. We experienced all the four seasons in the brief time we were there. It rained, it shone and it even snowed while the temperatures varied wildly between about 35 - 75 degrees. We rented an apartment in the Poble Sec neighborhood just at the foot of Montjuic and a short walk to the Harbor and sea.
I have so many nice photographs of Barcelona that I will post several blogs about the city. This post mostly focuses on the architecture and general ambiance of the city.
Barcelona, like many Spanish cities, has narrow shady streets (cool in the hot summer months) which open out onto large squares, where people congregate.
Barcelona is a city that has been greatly influenced by her native sons, particularly by the modernist architect Antoni Gaudi (1852-1926). His fantastical church, Sagranda Famillía which has been under construction since 1883 is not estimated to be completed until 2026.
Many of the buildings in Barcelona are extravagantly ornamented. Certainly Gaudi and those who came after him have lent much to the city's decoration, but Barcelona's history is long and many of its buildings have stood for hundreds of years. It seems always to have been a place of architectural taste and experimentation. It has often, throughout its history, been a very prosperous city.
The harbor and Mediterranean Sea were just a short walk from our apartment. Our first day in town was clear, bright and warm. We had lunch next to the harbor and walked along the boardwalk afterwards.
Next post will feature Barcelona markets. I simply can't resist taking photos of food!