Friday, September 23, 2016

Parting Shots from Barcelona

After a great 12 days in our amazing apartment, it was time to leave Barcelona.  Thought I'd close out this section of the blog with some parting images of our neighborhood, a striking contrast, and one last project by Gaudi, which we had the good fortune to visit on our last day in town.

Another modernista masterpiece, that was just a couple blocks from our apartment.  This one had a strange tour, kind of a disney ride through the story of King George and the dragon, followed by a walk around the roof with exhibits in each of the turrets.

Part of the fun of walking around the Eixemple neighborhood is the richness of the details in the different houses and apartment blocks.  This was from a wrought iron gate.

The Palau de Musica was so great that we all went back for another visit, this time to hear a fantastic classical guitar performance by a guy named David Russell, born in Scotland but raised and trained in Spain.  He was wonderful, and the space was just as magical at night.

More details from around the neighborhood.

And now for something completely different . . . 

Mies van de Rohe (mr. less is more) designed the German pavilion for the 1929 World's Fair.  The rest of the buildings are an amazing collection, and this one stands out in stark contrast.  It was fully reconstructed round 10 years ago, and really is quite a modern masterpiece.

On our final day, we went to the Park Guell by Gaudi, located in the northern part of the city.  A word of advice for future visitors to Barcelona - get your tickets for this (and the Sagrada Familia) online and in advance.  We had tried to go the day before, and found that the first available tickets were for 3 hours after we arrived, so we bought tix for the next day and went back, now able to avoid the lines.  It's very crowded, but it's a big park, and well worth seeing.

Amy and Pudd, who visited Barcelona together 37 years ago, still looking young as ever, and ready to enjoy the sites of the park.

No idea who these people are, but i loved how they looked in the window, and her expression is priceless.

The craftsmanship around the park is incredible, especially the tile mosaics, which are all over the place.  These are on the ceiling in the main enclosed area, which was intended to be a public market.  The park was built to be a housing development, but the changes in the political and economic conditions of Barcelona led to only a couple of homes actually being built.  it was eventually turned over to the city as a park.  You have to pay to see the important historic elements (which are a Unesco world heritage site), but the park extends way beyond this with many more fantastic things to experience.

The weird stone colonnades throughout the site are fascinating.  It was a great visit for our last day, followed by a fantastic final dinner at a classic seafood restaurant in the Gracia neighborhood.

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