Barcelona is not only the old town – city, but also it has more districts for a nice visit.
Firstly, Barcelona old town is a place with oldest treasures of city – Cathedral, Santa Maria del Mar church, Kings’ palace. Here is also Citadel park, where some time ago town’s citadel was built, also vibrant Rambla street.
Montjuic is a place on a hill with nice panorama views of city. Here is a green surrounding, but also nice architectural objects as Montjuic castle, National art museum, and Olympic stadium.
Eixample district is the most famous for Gaudi works – Sanctuary of holy Family, houses of Cassa Batllo, La Pedrera, and hospital of Sant Pau. This district mainly represents Barcelona architecture of 19 – 20 centuries.
Every picture of this tip presents different district.
Located north of Placa Catalunya, L'Eixample is the city's commercial and economic heart. It is also home to some very fabulous modernista architecture, most of which is located on or near to the elegant Passeig de Gracia.
The main attraction in the area (and possibly in the city itself) is the stunning Gaudi designed basilica, La Sagrada Familia. This immense church is still under construction after more than 100 years! You can take a look inside and see the builders at work.
Another Gaudi designed building is La Pedrera or Casa Mila. If you have the time it is worth a look inside - make sure you pay a visit to the roof to see the giant chimney pots. Close by, you may see the pointed turrets of the Casa de les Punxes, or perhaps the intriguing façade of Casa Comalat. The latter was designed by Salvador Valeri and Gaudi's influence is evident.
Fondest memory: Just off Passeig de Gracia check out the bizarre looking Fundacio Antoni Tapies, which is a modernista building with what looks like a pile of barbed-wire on its roof. The building is filled with the art of Antoni Tapies, who is known for his experimental works.
Back on Passeig de Gracia, you have three modernista gems all in a row. Casa Batllo is a Gaudi designed residential building - a fabulous place to visit, with probably the most expensive admission charge in town.
Next you have Casa Amatller, which was designed by Puig I Cadafalch. It has Gothic windows and an unusual stepped gable roof. Pop inside the foyer to see the beautiful stained glass ceiling above the stairs.
Last building on the same block is the Casa Lleo Morera which was built in 1905, designed by Domenech I Montaner. It has lots of small, columned balconies on its face, with a domed tower on top.
In my opinion, the best place to stay is in L'Eixample, near the Sagrada Famiglia.
I liked this neighborhood because I found it clean and safe, very convenient and full of stores and restaurants that stayed open late. The prices for food and drink here were half of what they were in the Barri Gottica.
Fondest memory: In this area, you're not staying in a tourist trap. You're staying in Barcelona. You won't find a whole lot of tourists here. While the plus side of this is that you really do get a good feel of what it is like to live and work in Barcelona, the downside is that you will need to use whatever Spanish you know. In this neighborhood, you really don't need to worry about the pickpockets and guilleys. Grocery stores are common, and there is just a lot to see and do.
This is the name (La Manzana de la Discordia) given to a block of houses in the Passeig de Gracia, where you can find the:
- Casa Lleo Morera,
- Casa Amatller and the
- Casa Batllo,
3 jewels of the BCN modernism.
So why "apple"? The word manzana has 2 meanings in spanish: apple and block of houses.
The first meaning is a block of houses that are all very important and the discord comes when it has to be decided which one is the best.
And here comes the other meaning (apple): according to a Greek Myth, an apple was the responsible of the Trojan Wars, as it was given as a prize to the most beautiful Goddes (out of 3), causing the revenge of the other 2.
So here are 3 buildings (as the 3 Goddess) and none wants to decide who is the winner... well, I have my favourite, but I won't tell, LOL!!
Fondest memory: Passeig de Gracia 35, 41 and 43.
Metro Pg. de Gracia
There's a zone, in Barcelona, in the barri Eixample, and also a little part of ciutat Vella, where the gay people hav a lot of bars, discos, and another things to enjoy. A lot of this gay people get now their home here, and we can say it's a new neightbourghood, that i have heard people talking about as "Gaycelona". If a couple walk around, they can feel like the men look at the leggs of the man, the other way that normally. In the photo, the zone, more or less.
Favorite thing: Between 1860 and 1920 Barcelona expanded into a grid of uniform streets parallel to the sea, an area known as l'Eixample (the Extension). Today this is a residential, commercial and business district, divided in half by the Diagonal, a grand avenue cutting through the grid at a 45-degree angle. It's an interesting example of innovative town planning, and contains Barcelona's finest Modernist buildings. Some of the best are in the Passeig de Gràcia; look for No. 43, Casa Batlló, with a mosaic facade and wavy roofline that represent St. George's dragon. The block at No. 92 is known as La Pedrera, Gaudí's last secular work. It's without a single straight line or sharp corner.
the area of Barcelona called eixample is a quarter that was built after 1859, when they tore down the city walls. This second Barcelona was carefully planned and structured by Ildefons Cerda i Sunyer and laid out as a grid.
Fondest memory: It's where most of the wonderful modernist buildings are located: Gaudì's houses (la pedrera, casa batlò), the sagrada familia, parc guell, but also, by other architects, casa amatler, casa de les punxes and the hospital san pau.
Fondest memory: wandering the streets of the Eixample area and discovering its weird and wonderful and distinct architectural styles...just go when the lines aren't so massive and maybe you can go inside these buildings instead of just observing from across the street...
When visiting Barcelona you should take your time! It's not possible to 'do' the cituy in two or three days, you better take at least one week to explore all that this city has to offer. I myself have been there so many times now, and each time i find out that there are still interesting things to discover!
The city has several intersting areas that you can visit: of course there's first the barri gotic: the old town with its small, dark little alleys, its historical buildings like the Carhedral and its beutifull placas like Placa Reial. Secondly there is the Eixamle ('extension.' It's the part of the city build during the Modernité, at the end of the 19 th. century and beginning of the 20 th. century, wich is build under influence of the city's great Modernité architects like Gaudi)In this area you can find Gaudi's famous houses like La Pedrera and of course the hughe, almost surrealistic Sagrada Familia. Third, there are two hills that you must Visit: the monthuic and the parc Güell. At the Montjuic you can find many interesting things: there's an old castle, there's a 'poble espanyol' (a little village with buildings that are exact copys of all kinds of spanisch typical architecture), you can find the Palau National at this hill, and last but not least, the estadi Olympic. The parc Güell, located on the other side of the city, is like an open air museum, containing a great deal of Gaudi's architecture style: beautifull, colourfull stutues, buildings and recreation facilities. It also gives you a magnificant view over the city of Barcelona! But there's still more to see: Near the harbour you find Barceloneta with its lovely little restaurants and pubs (where you can have tastefull 'tapas'), and the harbourdistrict offers a lot of nightlife possibilties (there are disco's and bars lying in the harbour) Near Barceloneta you can also find the Parc de Cuitadella (wich was once build for the Expo: there is f.e. a museu de Zoologia and art modern, and a zoo) and the olympic village (from the games of 1992). And, finaly you can visit the Tibidabo hill, which has a funny amusement parc at some 1000 meters above the city!
Fondest memory: There are so many great memmories of the city. The best thing to do is, when you have visited all the important sights, just to relax and hang around on one of the many placa's the city has, like f.e. the placa Reial or the placa Catalunya. Sitting there on the grass of the place Catalunya near the fontain, meeting other people there, having a drink and playing guitar, that was allright! Nowadays, though, the place Reial and Catalunya have changed a bit: there are some negative characters hanging around there, annoying others with their drugsdealing. That's a pity, but the police is starting to do something agaisnt it, so that the good atmosphere is going to return!
From all things I have visited, the most interesting one was the parc Güell. It is interesting for it's originality and for it's location: you enter the parc at a placa called 'Lesseps' and then you clim up the hill, by stairs, so that you finaly get on the top of the hill, where there's a cross, and from that point you have a splendid view over the city, while you yourself are in the middle of nature, mediteranean forrests, and the smell of Eucalyptus; a very pleasant sensation.
Gran Teatre del Liceu (Opera House): Restored after a fire in 1994.
Gaudi’s Palau Guell.
The Plaça Reial it is a must among meeting points when the day comes to an end.
And Wax Museum which brings us closer to one of the most unusual café-bars in the city- El Bosc de les Fades, the decoration of which is reminiscent of a forest inhabited by fairies and elves.
Our walk ends at statue of Cristofor Colom ( Catalan or maybe Genovese who discovered America in 1492).
Near Via Laietana (It is a main street which receive the name from Laietans Iberic residents in Barcelona former to Greeks and Romans), you can find The Palau de la Música Catalana. It is the main work of Lluis Domenech i Muntaner. One of the most important concert halls in the city and a stunning example of Modernist architecture.
You are now in the quarter where there are a lot of wholesale and retail clothing business in the city (it is a must in Trafalgar and Ronda Sant Pere).
PASSAIG DE GRACIA
The commercial and touristic centre, full of big stores, restaurants and people walking around.