Onto Barcelona

Barcelona Travel Blog

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Sagrada Familia

And into a new country!  Spain is a beautiful country with great people.  I met some great people on the train, and before we arrived in Barcelona we'd decided to meet up later that evening.  I made it with little difficulty to my hostel, dropped off my things, and went out to see the city.  The first thing I noticed on the day I arrived was large piles of wood all over the city.  After inquiring I found out that later that evening there was to be a festival, and they would burn the wood and have one big, city-wide party.  More on that in a bit!

The first thing I wanted to see, since I had heard so much about it, was the Sagrada Familia.

From the Sagrada Familia
  Antoni Gaudi started the project in 1882, and it's actually not scheduled to be finished until 2026.  I arrived and I tried talking the girl at the gate into letting me in for the student price, but she would have nothing to do with it, unless I had an ISIC (international student) card.  This is the only place where they demanded that I had this card...every other place in Europe let me in with my college student card.  The Sagrada Familia stands impressive over the rest of Barcelona, towering over the other buildings in the area.  The admission price allows you to walk around the inside of the church, although it was a bit hard to appreciate - there was scaffolding everywhere.  I had heard that they had finally put in some of the stained glass windows, which did really make the inside look nice.
Outside of the Sagrada Familia
  A very steep and narrow set of stairs gives access to the top of the church.  The stairs wind upward and the top offers a nice view over the city.  It really helps you to appreciate the top of the church, as there are pillars built to represent the apostles, the blessed mother, and a pillar for Christ himself.  The Gaudiness of the church (I mean that in a good way) really comes out here, but even more so at the bottom outside.

The architecture of the building from the outside is what impressed me the most.  I wish I could remember all the intricate things that were carved into the side of the church, but a few do stand out in my mind...please look at the pictures.  There is a set of numbers (4x4), which, when added either vertically or horizontally - equal 33, the age Jesus was when He went to the cross.

Las Ramblas
  Even the representation of the crucifixion and the apostles were impressive.  It was well worth paying the adult price to get in.

After visiting the Sagrada Familia, I made my way to Las Ramblas.  This pedestrian street is another highlight of a trip to Barcelona.  Filled with shops, artists, and all sorts of interesting characters.  It's the place to go to see people literally painting themselves to resemble a statue, famous person in history, or perhaps they are performing some action.  The thing is, they remain perfectly still until someone drops a coin into their bucket.  At that time, they will perform some action and allow you to take a picture.  I wasn't about to drop a euro into each one's bucket for a photo, but I did donate to a few of them.

This guy was all over the city, very professional!

I ended up eating dinner at about 7:00 PM and the place was dead.  I knew I was eating too early, but on that particular day I was hungry.  As it turns out, the Spanish take a siesta during the day and everything shuts down for a while.  Supermarkets, stores, you name it.  Because of this, they eat later and therefore stay up later.  A festival til all hours of the morning isn't something totally foreign.

Later that evening, as planned, I met up with a few people I had met on the train.  We decided to go see what the festival was all about.  As we walked around the city, we saw people dancing in the streets and having a good time.  We walked down to the beach and joined the festivities there.  There was some sort of parade with music and dancing that we joined in on.  We got the hang of things quickly and had a great time.  There were lots of different things going on down by the beach, so we spent the rest of the night hanging out there.  We never did figure out what they were celebrating, and I am not even sure if the locals knew (or cared)!

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Sagrada Familia
Sagrada Familia
From the Sagrada Familia
From the Sagrada Familia
Outside of the Sagrada Familia
Outside of the Sagrada Familia
Las Ramblas
Las Ramblas
This guy was all over the city, ve…
This guy was all over the city, v…
This guy doesnt know I only gave …
This guy doesn't know I only gave…
Statue bikers
Statue bikers
A statue Cleopatra
A statue Cleopatra
A statue Elvis
A statue Elvis
Fruit grows out of people here
Fruit grows out of people here
Isnt that beautiful?  Inside the …
Isn't that beautiful? Inside the…
Looking back
Looking back
Barcelona port
Barcelona port
Inside one of the churches in Barc…
Inside one of the churches in Bar…
Barcelona
Barcelona
Barcelona
Barcelona
Outside of the Sagrada Familia - t…
Outside of the Sagrada Familia - …
Outside of the Sagrada Familia
Outside of the Sagrada Familia
Looking up in the Sagrada Familia
Looking up in the Sagrada Familia
Inside the Sagrada Familia
Inside the Sagrada Familia
Outside of the Sagrada Familia
Outside of the Sagrada Familia
View from the top of the Sagrada F…
View from the top of the Sagrada …
View from the top of the Sagrada F…
View from the top of the Sagrada …
Wood pile to burn for the festival
Wood pile to burn for the festival
Barcelona
Barcelona
Barcelona
Barcelona
Barcelona
photo by: fivepointpalm