While we were living in the UK as students, my friend Cassie and I decided to go to Barcelona after our 3rd semester. The exams were exhausting and while we were pouring over our lecture notes I was tired and said something about a relaxing break, Cassie immediately chimed in that we should visit Barcelona, it sounded like a welcome break.
Barcelona is a wonderful, warm and busy city. The city is bustling with energy. People are friendly and you would find no shortage of visitors here. Our first stop was the Barceloneta beach, if you want to find a good spot here you need to reach early since this is the most popular beach of Barcelona. Sun loungers and beach umbrellas are available to rent. This beach ave us a chance to enjoy the Mediterranean life in the truest essence. We played some Volleyball with the locals and enjoyed jumping and diving into the hot, lovely sand. We walked to the infamous Passeig Maritim, which is a waterfront promenade that attracts any joggers, cyclists and rollerblades. We saw the leaning tower monument by Rebecca Horn called Homenatge a laBarceloneta as well as Peixd’Or (golden fish) by Frank Gehry, which is a unique fish sculpture.
Our next stop was the stunning casa Mila, oh what a sight it was! The architecture baffles you; you feel like you’re in a Disney movie, its so amazing! Casa Mila which is more famously known as La Pedrera is the largest civil building designed by Gaudi forPedrO Mila,a rich businessman who was impressed by Antoni Gaudi’s casa Batllo. Mila commissioned Gaudi to construct an apartment building on a corner site at the Passeig de Gracia.
This building breaks the boundaries of traditional architecture by not using a single straight line! The weight of the building is supported by pillars and arches and not walls, the height of pillars and ceilings differ in different areas. The apartments are arranged around 2 central courtyards. If you look from outside, the building appears like a series of waves, to some it even gives the illusion of cliff-like rock with multiple caves. In olden times people called it “the quarry” hence the name La Pederera(quarry). The roof, attic and the top floor are all open to visitors. The apartment on the top floor gives an idea of how the interior must have looked at the beginning of the twentieth century. Just like on the outside, the interior has virtually no straight lines.
In the attic of Casa Mila you see Gaudi’s works with photos and scale models of his designed buildings.
The roof is probably the most intriguing part of Casa Mila. It features a number of surrealistic colorful chimneys. Many of them look like warriors in a science fiction movie, others look more trifling. The roof has a bench quite identical to the one in ParcGuell From the top of Casa Milà, you have a nice view over the Eixample district.
In the evening we relaxed and tried some seafood paella since it was recommended b so many to try some. It was the to most delicious paella I’ve ever had. We chatted and enjoyed the balmy breeze sitting on the open patio of the restaurant with the sun slowly sinking in the background.
Night time took us back to Barceloneta beach to the beach bar (chiringuitos) to enjoy the music and dance the night away.
Barcelona proved to be a little gem that kept us thirsty for more. It was refreshing, sunny, hospitable and outright stunning. I would recommend anyone who want a little bit of everything along with soaking up the sun, to pay Barcelona a visit.