Things to see and do - Barcelona
Modernist Barcelona :
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Modernist BarcelonaPedestrian, Public Transport, 15 km, 2 days
Explore a Barcelona in which odd, undulating forms of vegetation creep across building façades, invade terraces and seemingly enter the buildings themselves to create a surprising and unique environment.Customise this route and add it to My travel book
Although it used to link the old town to the village of Gràcia, it is now, along with Eixample the residential area of the upper class. It links beautiful buildings epitomising early 20C architecture, such as those by Gaudí, Domènech i Montaner and Puig i Cadafalch, in particular. The oil lamps adorning this main street are one of the symbols of the city's modern identity. Designed by Pere Faqués in 1900, they indeed demonstrate the modernist trend for materials such as iron and ceramics.
This beautiful house by Domènech i Montaner dates from 1905 and is part of the famous "Apple of Discord". This renowned architect introduced a certain sobriety into his Modernist designs here.
This building by Puig i Cadafalch (1900) is part of the famous "Apple of Discord". It has a beautiful façade with frescoes bearing floral motifs and large Gothic windows. Note, in particular, the exquisite finesse of the balconies and doorways. The building houses the Amattler Institute, with its small collection of glasswork, paintings and sculptures from various periods, as well as a library and a sound archives room specialising in art from the 10C to the 20C.
This masterful work by Gaudí is part of the famous "Apple of Discord" and was built between 1904 and 1906 in pure Modernist style, with ceramic coloured glass disks and a fishscale roof. At the time, the unique enlarged windows on the first floor gave rise to the nickname "House of the Yawns". While the exterior is overpowering in its dynamism and profusion of images and colours, the inside continues in the same theme, creating an aesthetic coherence and unparalleled beauty throughout.
More commonly known as "La Pedrera", this building, with its façade evoking the movement of the sea and its fantasy decor, is one of Gaudí's finest achievements. A tour of the roof provides wonderful views of the entire Eixample district, as well as the building's chimneys and air vents with their unique and somewhat unsettling fairytale shapes. Inside, El Pis provides an insight into life in a noble house in the early 20C.
This building is best known as the «Casa de les Punxes» because of its pointed roof, and is yet another testiment to the ingenuity of Puig i Cadafalch's architecture. It is in this work that the Neo-gothic style is the most noticeable
Gaudí dedicated 40 years of his life to his best-known work, which remains unfinished. He gave it great symbolic power by claiming that it was an atonement for the world's materialism and an expression of human solidarity and fraternity. When he died only the crypt (which houses his tomb), the apse and the Nativity façade, had been finished, the latter's three doorways topped by four towers, 115m high. Despite huge political wranglings, a decision was taken to complete this revolutionary project.
This magic place half-way between reality and fantasy, looks onto two quite unique mushroom-shaped buildings straight out of the fairy tale book. A stairway headed by a dragon made up of ingenious mosaics leads to the Hall of a hundred columns On top of the hall there is a circular square which offers an extraordinary view over the town, surrounded by the famous and never-ending undulating bank where Gaudí's fantasy for colour knows no bounds.
Built by Domènech i Montaner between 1905 and 1908, it is undoubtedly the most striking symbol of the Catalan middle classes in the 1900s and one of the masterpieces of Modernism. Headquarters of the Orfeó Català (Catalan Choir), it is the largest concert hall in Barcelona. The exterior is spectacular and inside you can admire the impressive reversed cupola, a real ornamental marvel. A wealth of unusual details is scattered throughout this surprising space. An absolute 'must'.
This stunning residence, built between 1886 and 1890 to extend the home of the Güell family (with ten children), is a fine example of Gaudí's architectural style. The great innovation is in the parabolic arches in the entrance, enhanced by typically extravagant Modernist grilles. Inside, the grand hall is without doubt the most remarkable room of the house, with its parabolic cupola pierced with small openings that allow light to filter through, giving the impression of the night sky.