Sagrada familia and Antoni Gaudi’s Barcelona
Barcelona city is known for the Sagrada Familia, beaches, delicious food, and FC Barcelona, but also for hosting works by Antoni Gaudi. In our previous article, we told all about the bars in Málaga for a wonderful night out. On this occasion, we would like to tell you more about another beautiful Mediterranean city, Barcelona. It is simply inevitable to visit Barcelona and not admiring any of the artwork that this great artist has created. We dare to say that Barcelona is what it is today thanks to the work of Gaudí.
Who would have imagined that this sickly child from a poor family of boilermakers, from a small town in Reus, would become one of the most recognized and famous architects in the world?
The origin of Antoni Gaudí Cornet is controversial because there is no official record of his birthplace. However, the vast majority of the documents found the place the artist’s origin in Reus. Gaudí had a great appreciation for his homeland, so his Mediterranean heritage had a great impact on his architecture. Gaudí said that Mediterranean people have an innate sense of art and design. They are creative and original, while the Nordic ones are more technical and repetitive.
On June 7, 1926, a streetcar ran over Gaudí at the intersection of Gran Vía de las Cortes and Bailén streets in Barcelona. This accident left him lying on the ground and seriously injured. Passers-by, however, did not come to his aid as they took him for a beggar. His body was buried in the Crypt of the Sagrada Familia.
After this tragic event, Barcelona became the city most influenced by the works of Gaudí. It was his peculiar way of understanding architecture as a reflection of nature, which led him to become a leading figure in the development of modernism styles. Together in this article, we will explore Gaudi’s Barcelona and why they are an unmissable attraction during your stay.
The Sagrada Familia
The most sacred of all, though a consecutive work in progress. This church has been under construction for more than 100 years and more than 8 architects have continued Gaudi’s masterpiece through time.
The endless work that Gaudí started (1882), is a construction that will be finished in 2030, at least that is expected. In addition, it is a construction that has defied the passage of time.
Did you know that the Sagrada Familia will be the tallest building in Barcelona and the tallest church in the world at 172 meters high? This church combines the elements of humanity, religion, and nature that have made it one of the UNESCO world heritage sites. It is also the most visited place in Spain.
It is Considered the fullest and most mature work of Antoni Gaudí. This jewel of modernism is in the heart of Paseo de Gracia, the golden mile of Barcelona. The story of this amazing building started when Josep Batlló commissioned Antoni Gaudí to remodel an old building with total freedom during the early 1900’s. Gaudi’s work on this structure shows a clear example of the art nouveau style. The influence of Gaudi in Barcelona reached such a high point, that this structure represents the legend of San Jordi, which is one of the most important festivals in Catalonia. It is Valentine’s Day in the region, based on a legend. The facade, roof, and interior are clear examples of the modernist style that Gaudi implemented in Barcelona.
La Pedrera – Casa Milà
This marvelous work was commissioned by the textile industrialist Pere Milà, who met Gaudí after visiting Casa Batlló. Like many of the bourgeois class in Barcelona during the early 1900’s, Mr. Milà decided to live in Passeig de Gràcia in a building constructed by the architect in vogue at the time: Antoni Gaudí. Unlike all his previous works, Gaudí decided to demolish the previous building and build it from scratch. This being a building full of details and symbolism. The most striking area is the rooftop where an army of chimneys in the shape of warriors appears. Another interesting detail regarding La Pedrera is that the Sagrada Familia can be seen through one of the arches. This demonstrating the clear obsession that Gaudi had for this sacred church.
La Casa Vicens was Antoni Gaudí’s first major commission, the starting point of all his later architectural work. At the age of 26 Antoni Gaudí just graduated, and although without experience he built this house as a summer residence for Manuel Vicens (a brick and tile manufacturer) It was his first masterpiece and one of the first buildings that introduced Modernism in Catalonia and Europe. Casa Vicens has gone through many renovations over the years. The most recent one was in 2017 when it was reopened to the public.
The initial project was not to build a park but a luxury residential area. However, this project was a failure from the initial stage in the construction site. It ended up becoming an original public park in which there is not a single straight line. Eusebi Güell was fascinated by British residential parks, and Gaudí took this into consideration by naming it “Park Güell” in English. The main entrance to the Park shows what the Garden of Eden would be like if it still existed. In our days, Park Güell is the place in Barcelona where people take the most selfies according to the social media “Instagram”. It can be easily reached by foot from either the Sagrada Familia or Casa Batlló.
At the end of the 19th century, the right-hand side of the Eixample was becoming a growing neighborhood. Pere Mártir Calvet commissioned Antoni Gaudí to build his house in which he requested that his business be placed in the basement and ground floor. Consequently, he requested to have his residence built on the first floor. This is probably the most conservative work that Gaudi ever made because the base structure is located between two old buildings. This greatly limited the work of our famous architect. Nevertheless, we can still admire certain characteristics from Gaudi’s work in this structure.
The symmetry of the façade and the shape of the balconies are quite similar to that of the Casa Batlló. Even though Casa Calvet is not included in the list of most famous works by Gaudi, it received the award back in 1900 for being the best building of the year according to the Barcelona City Council.
What is the best way to visit Gaudí’s Barcelona?
Some of the attractions and works from Gaudi can be expensive to visit if you go one place at a time. To clarify, it is best to try and organize your visit by using a Barcelona Pass or to buy tickets in advance to avoid long queues and to get into as many attractions as possible for the least amount of money. Below you will find the most recommended Passes that you can purchase depending on the amount of time and works from Gaudi you want to visit in Barcelona.
From € 83 per person – This includes
- Audio-guided and fast-track entry to the Sagrada Familia (our staff will contact you to inform you of the date and time of the visit). It does not include the ascent to the towers.
- Skip-the-line audio-guided entrance to La Pedrera (audio guides in 10 languages)
- Barcelona Tourist Bus 1 day adult ticket + Tourist Bus information guide in 3 languages with details of the stops on the different routes + audio guide on board the Tourist Bus in 16 languages + discount brochure for tourist visits + free WiFi on the Tourist Bus, with direct connection.
- Wine tasting and climb to the Mirador de Colón.
Price € 35 per person- Includes
You can visit the following museums:
- The National Art Museum of Catalonia.
- Joan Miró Foundation
- Picasso museum
- Museum of Contemporary Art (MACBA)
- Barcelona Center for Contemporary Culture (CCCB)
- Antoni Tàpies Foundation
From € 80 per person – Includes
- Sagrada familia (skip-the-line ticket)
- Park Guëll (skip-the-line ticket)
- Aerobus (Transfer from airport)
- Tourist bus (option of 1 or 2 days)
- 10% discount (on other main attractions)
- Audio guide (the highlights of AppAll Barcelona)
For each of the activities included in the City Pass, it is necessary to enter a date and time to visit. Once you have made your choice, and email occurred with the E-Pass attached. Make sure you have this e-ticket with you, as your entry to all activities included.
The price depends on the passes of 2, 3 or 5 days- From € 85 to € 145. That is, the adult ticket and from € 61 to € 99, while the child ticket (4 – 12 years old). This includes:
All-Inclusive access to more than 30 different attractions in Barcelona. Below you will find the list of attractions and activities included in the All-inclusive Go Barcelona Pass.
- Casa Batlló
- Barcelona Aquarium
- Casa Milá (La Pedrera)
- The Museum of Modernism (MMBcn)
- Futbol Club Barcelona Stadium Tour & Museum (Camp Nou Experience)
- Barcelona Walking Tour
- Las Golondrinas Barcelona Boat Tour
- Poble Espanyol
- Colònia Güell & Gaudí Crypt
- Recinte Modernista Sant Pau
- Barcelona Zoo
- Gaudí Exhibition Centre
- Casa Vicens
- Cathedral of the Sea Tour
- Casa Museu Amatller
- Museum of Contemporary Art (MACBA)
- European Museum of Modern Art (MEAM)
- Museo d’historia de Catalunya