We took a winter getaway last week with the hope of a bit of sun and warmth. It was a bit of a Christmas present. We decided to go to Barcelona. We had heard it was a beautiful city. We had never been there or even to Spain for that matter.
The first thing on our list of things to do was see the Sagrada Familia. It was right around the corner from where we were staying. We had tickets for 10:00. The tickets do have specific times to enter. We have seen various cathedrals in Europe and in some ways they do begin to look very similar. Even from the outside you know that it will be different.
The first stone was laid on 19 March 1882 and it is expected to be completed in 2026. Gaudi was the chief architect. Gaudi is a figure of modern architecture. Much of the inspiration for Sagrada Familia is from nature.
There are three facades -- the east is the nativity, the west the passion facade and the south which is not completed the glory facade. The east was done very much in Gaudi's style while the passion has a bit of cubist style.
The interior is full of light and coloured light from the stained glass windows. The columns and arches are not the typical that you see in other cathedrals. The columns look a bit like trees and branches.
You can almost feel like you are in a bit of a forest as you look at the columns.
The stained glass is a bit lighter in colour and so light flows through filling the building with the colours.
We also booked to go up one of the towers. You can an elevator up and then walk around a bit and walk down. Miss K didn't want to go up so we took turns going up.
This is looking at the fruit on the outside. You can see the workman there. It is hard to imagine that this was begun in 1882 and won't be finished for another 10 years. So when it was begun the workers knew they would not see it finished. When I thought back to how long it took to build the York Minister, 250 years I guess it does take a long time to build something this big.
Even the stairway going down has the look from nature -- it looks like a shell. The steps were narrow but not difficult to go down.
In the afternoon we went up Montjuic. We had planned to go partway up on the funicular but that was closed for annual maintenance so we rode a bus to the cable cars. Miss K loved the cable cars.
At the top is Montjuic Castle. The current structure was built in 1751. We didn't go in but walked around the outside.
We had a nice view of the harbour.
Here is the city as we were going down the cable car. You can see Sagrada Familia.