Explore The Magic Of Barcelona Architecture

The splendid architecture in and around Barcelona is without doubt one of the city's biggest draws. Generally speaking, Barcelona architecture is distinctly Catalan and although it is usually termed modernist or modernism in English 'Modernime' architecture (as it is named in Catalan) should not be confused with the modernist architecture of the German Bauhaus movement and is in stark contrast. So what can you see here?

La Sagrada Familia

la sagrada familiaThis is without doubt Antoni Gaudi's finest work, although he never saw it finished. He lived for a further 43 years after being commissioned to carry out the work back in 1883. However when he died in 1926 it was nowhere near complete. In fact to this day it is still being built in the 'Gaudiesque' style and is hoped to be finished by 2026 which is the 100th anniversary of the great architect's death.

Take a walk round the building and see the detail and sculptures on the fašades or take the climb the stairs and enter the museum. Here it charts the construction of the building. Alternatively why not take the lift to the top of the basilica where you get a birds eye view of the city laid out below.

Parc Guell

parc guellThis is Barcelona architecture at its finest and is another that Antoni Gaudi left unfinished. It was originally intended as a type of residential area for the city's elite complete with vast open park land and shady planting so that people could take an afternoon or evening stroll. However the city planners were also developing the Eixample district which eventually quashed his plans.

Having said that, the architecture located in the park is simply stunning. Take a look at the Hansel and Gretel like gatekeepers cottages, or the modernist bench surrounding the large plaza that has been shaped like a serpent or the building that resembles a life sized Greek temple. All of these structures are typically Gaudi and are well worth a visit, as is the park itself.

Illa de la Discordia

Known in English as the 'Block of Discord' it is a trio of architecturally designed buildings by three of Catalan's greatest modernist architects. The first one is the Casa Almatler which was designed by Josep Puig, the second is the Casa Lleo Morera which is designed by Luis Domenech i Montaner and finally Casa Battlo is of course Gaudi's contribution. You can go inside the Gaudi house but it isn't particularly cheap. However once inside you can get up close and personal with the interior which is just as stunning as the exterior.

Hospital de Sant Pau

This is one of Barcelona's most stunning buildings. Built between 1901 and 1930 it was designed by Catalan architect Luis Domenech i Montaner. Right up until 2009 it was a fully functioning hospital, but unlike any normal drab boring hospital building, this certainly isn't.

It is only a stone's throw away from La Sagrada Familiar, so there really is no excuse to miss it. Designed in Gothic grandeur with sweeping circular marble steps and Moroccan inspired arches, this is Barcelona architecture at its best. It is now a UNESCO world heritage site and is undergoing some restoration for use as a museum.

These are just some of the fantastic buildings that await visitors to Barcelona. Architecture abounds in the Catalan capital, but whether you love the modernist style or you hate it, it still manages to turn heads.

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Barcelona Discount Card With Guidebook
Barcelona Discount Card with Guidebook

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