Hey everyone! I know I’ve already shared with you some insight to Barcelona in an older post, but upon visiting a second time, I’ve decided to focus on one very important aspect of the city: Antoni Gaudí. Everywhere you turn in this city you can feel Gaudí’s presence.
When visiting Barcelona in July, I was able to visit 3 very important places when focusing on Gaudí: 1) La Pedrera (aka Casa Mila) 2) Park Güell 3) La Sagrada Familia. Check out all the beautiful things I saw & interesting facts I learned while tracing Gaudí’s footsteps through Barcelona.
La Pedrera (Casa Mila)
La Pedrera in Spanish means stone quarry. This has to do with the look of the outside of this building but is only a nickname. The real name is Casa Mila because of the family who built it. In 1905, Passeig de Gràcia was a very popular location for the wealthy to live in Barcelona (it’s still one of their most famous streets). Pere Mila commissioned Gaudí to build him a house, having the first floor apartment to be there own and the other levels for others to rent.
Now in true Gaudí fashion, he really pushed the boundaries with this building. It’s most famous for it’s curves along the outside and stonework.
In the 1980’s, this building became a UN World Heritage site and in 1996 it opened to the public. It costs 22 euros for an adult ticket to visit, which you can either buy online here or in person. This ticket grants you access to one of the apartments & the roof.
Another famous part of Gaudí’s Barcelona is Park Güell. Perched high on a hill overlooking the city, this area was once thought to become a private village for Barcelona’s elite. Gaudí was asked by Count Güell (who the park is now named after) to design some houses and a public area. Only two houses were built. One was meant to be a show house & the second for the Count. After the show house failed to sell, Gaudí purchased it himself and lived there with his family. It’s now a museum.
The rest of the park remains a tribute to Gaudí’s unique flair. The tile-work and mosaics give this area of Barcelona a fairy-tale vibe.
Depending on the time of year (and time of day), the line for Park Güell can be quite long. I recommend purchasing your tickets ahead of time, online here. It costs 7.50 euros for an adult to visit the park or you can purchase an upgraded ticket that includes a guided tour. Some areas of the park are free to access, so if you were on a tight budget, I still recommend checking out this area for some beautiful views!
La Sagrada Familia
Quite possibly Barcelona’s most famous landmark, La Sagrada Familia is a must-see while visiting this international city. Although it is still technically a “work-in-progress”, it’s one of the most unique basilicas you can visit in the world.
Gaudí started work on La Sagrada Familia in 1883, but wasn’t officially appointed head architect until 1884. At the time of his death in 1926, La Sagrada Familia was only 20% complete. To this day, the Basilica is still not finished.
It is said that La Sagrada Familia will be officially finished in 2026, though many people are doubtful. The original design calls for 18 spires (towers)–12 representing the apostles, 4 representing the Evangelists (Matthew, Mark, Luke & John) , one for the Virigin Mary & the tallest in the center for Jesus.
Although La Sagrada Familia is not complete, you can still visit the inside. Like other things in Barcelona, it’s important to plan ahead and purchase your tickets online so you don’t waste time waiting in line! You can purchase your tickets here for 15 euros. They also offer upgraded tickets with guides or access to the towers.
Barcelona is one of those cities you can spend a week visiting and still feel like you’ve missed out on some things. If you’re time is limited, I recommend checking out at least one of Gaudí’s works to get a taste for this city.
Stay tuned for our next post about a day trip from Barcelona to Montseratt!