Wednesday, 22 August 2012

5 Things you MUST do in Barcelona! #2 - Sagrada Familia

Yawn. I hear ya. This is on EVERY must-see-and-do list and you prefer to get off the beaten track and see the 'real' Barcelona...

Well, I say to you, there's a reason this is on every must-see-and-do list!

For those of you uncultured swines out there, the Sagrada Familia is Antoni Gauid's unfinished masterpiece and is one of Barcelona's biggest tourist attractions. It's supposed to be finished by 2026 or something like that.

What a beauty! The Sagrada Familia that is...
The wonder of Gaudi is present all over Barcelona and it makes my head hurt thinking about what Barcelona might have looked like if Gaudi had thought 'You know what? I think I'm going to be a butcher'

Barcelona = Gaudi.

Once you get over the entrance prices (€16 entry) and the RIDICULOUS queues in the hot sun, I'll guarantee it's worth it.

This was actually my third time to visit the Sagrada Familia (smug) but I haven't been for almost six years. The previous two visits felt like paying to visit an overpriced building site, and I didn't even get to wear a hard hat or hi-vis jacket. Unfair.

The main basilica wasn't even nearly finished the last time I popped over and you had to climb a spiral staircase all the way up those towers in the picture above. Dizzy and sweaty is NOT a look I can pull off that well.

So I even comtemplated sitting it out and sunbathing in the park with a beer ice cream opposite while everyone else queued in the hot sun and slogged it out.

But I didn't, and I'm glad I didn't.

It's amazing. I don't tend to describe things as breathtaking as I'm not in a romance novel, but it really was.


There's a noticeable lack of handrail in the middle there...
So all in all, a fun couple of hours and well worth the entrance fee. Visiting the Sagrada Familia should be on your must-see-must-do list in Barcelona.

The only negative point I have is that while Gaudi was an extremely clever man with a huge vision, he didn't think of building a tea room in the entire compound the Sagrada sits in. So if, like us, you queue up mid morning for an hour and then your ticket states that you can't take the lift up to the top of the building for another two hours, you're going to get hungry. And grumpy. You can't leave and come back with your ticket, that would be too helpful.

There's is not a scrap of food to be found once you're inside the gates, trust us, we'd have found it - scavengers that we are.

Gaudi, if you'd have built a tea room, you'd have been able to charge extortionate fees for a sandwich which would have overflowed the cash fund to finish the build a LOT quicker than 2026. Tut tut.

If only my Dad had come to Barcelona with us, he's the king of packed lunches...

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