This post is the second in a series of seven about my week-long Mediterranean cruise earlier in the year.
Barcelona was the starting and ending point of our cruise voyage. Hence, we had a chance to enjoy it a bit both at the start and end of our trip.
We loved walking the wide boulevards and stopping at cafes and restaurants. Most of the city is built around a square grid, making it easy to find our way around on foot.
Barcelona is truly the city of Antoni Gaudí. His influences can be seen all over the city. The sheer number of buildings he designed guarantees that it is impossible to take a journey through the city center without seeing at least one of his works.
One of those masterpieces is Casa Batlló, an apartment building that he redesigned more than a century ago. There are nearly no straight lines in the building. Every shape is formed in an organic, flesh-like quality. The style is typical of Modernisme, a movement associated not just with Gaudí, but also with Salvador Dalí and Joan Miró.
Although we spent half a day there, it wasn’t enough to appreciate every single detail.
The most famous of Gaudí’s masterpieces is also the most-visited monument in Spain, the Sagrada Família, officially known as the Basílica de la Sagrada Família.
I’ve visited a hand full of large cathedrals in the past, but none are like this. The Sagrada Família has tree-like spindles in place of the traditional vaults seen in Gothic churches. The building is so complex and organic looking from the inside that I only started to understand it after viewing models and cross-sections in the museum.
Words and photographs cannot come close to capturing the breathtaking, nearly cathartic feeling that walking into the cathedral had on me. It’s genuinely something any lover of architecture must visit at least once in their lifetime.