Columbus, yachts and modern art.

Port Vell Travel Blog

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The ship-shaped World Trade Centre on the left and Torre de Jaume I on the right.

We hop off again at the stop near the World Trade Centre, which is a building standing at the end of a pier-like stretch of land sticking out into the harbour. Looking at the contours of the building it has the appearance of ship, the higher floors getting wider all the time. When we look straight up from where we are standing, we see the gondolas of the Transbordador Aeri arriving at, and leaving from the Torre de Jaume I. This cable cart line takes you from Montjuïc, all the way over the harbour, to the sea shore.

Turning our backs on the WTC we walk towards the roundabout in front of the Museu Maritim. This maritime museum is housed in a beautiful gothic building that stands on the exact location where Drassanes used to be. Drassanes was the largest medieval shipyard in the world where 30 ships could be built simultaneously.

Mirador de Colom, the huge monument to Christopher Columbus.
We do not go in (my parents aren't really the museum kind of people), but when we've got some spare time at the end of the week I just might go back and take a peak.

Taking a right at the roundabout gets us to the Mirador de Colom, a richly decorated, 60 metre high column with an enormous statue of Christopher Columbus at its top. Columbus points towards the ocean with his back to the city, as if he wants to make clear that the open sea is where he wants to be. The explorer didn't have his roots in Barcelona (or even Catalunya), but here people in high places recognised what he had done and gave him honorary citizenship of Catalunya. Inside the column a lift has been installed, that takes you to a panorama platform that looks out over the harbour.

The gothic Maritime Museum in the background in great contrast with the floating modern art in front of it.
On the other side of the road is the Catalan History Museum, that I may visit in case of spare time.

We walk onto the Rambla de Mar, a wooden walkway leading into the harbour where the Mare Magnum, a huge shopping mall, and l'Aquàrium, a Sea World-ish underwater zoo are located. We however, are only here to take in the atmosphere and feel the buzz of locals and tourists having a good time. The water around the Rambla de Mar is literally teeming with big fish of at least 35 centimetres in length and every single one of them seems to challenge us to dive in and catch him. There are even bigger fish in the harbour, but this kind doesn't swim. This kind of big fish has yachts, making the Barcelona harbour look like some tropical destination with ever blue skies and palm trees.

We walk the long way out of the harbour, making our way back to the nearest Bus Turístic stop.

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The ship-shaped World Trade Centre…
The ship-shaped World Trade Centr…
Mirador de Colom, the huge monumen…
Mirador de Colom, the huge monume…
The gothic Maritime Museum in the …
The gothic Maritime Museum in the…
This yacht belonged to one of the …
This yacht belonged to one of the…
The entrance of Mare Magnum shoppi…
The entrance of Mare Magnum shopp…
Port Vell
photo by: Stormcrow