We were officially on our own in Barcelona after our 12-day Mediterranean Cruise aboard the Carnival Sunshine. All in all, it was a fabulous trip – filled with so much history and beauty that we could hardly believe we had actually just experienced it. But we had one more fabulous place to explore before our flight back home to Wisconsin – Barcelona!
Eusebi Güell enlisted Antoni Gaudí, a renowned architect in Catalan modernism, for the design of his park back in 1900. Park Güell is the reflection of Gaudí’s personal style with inspiration from organic shapes. He always added imaginative ornamentation to his geometric structures, always free of square corners and sharp edges. The rounded, almost “gingerbready” designs were both beautiful and fun!
There is something about Antoni Gaudí that just fascinates me, and Park Güell (Gwell) is one of the most interesting parks I’ve ever been to. It sits high on Carmel Hill with great panoramic views of Barcelona and despite being packed with people, it was very calming and relaxing. Everywhere you look are beautiful, sometimes silly and always colorful embellishments – with mosaics and vegetation galore! All of my favorite things!
In the photo below, Jim is standing beneath the terrace in a large area with many columns. In many of the indentations in the ceiling were mosaics – three are pictured below. They seem to shimmer even though the area is shaded. It was quite pleasant under there with the beautiful ceiling blocking the hot sun. We lingered for quite a while, since every single one of those mosaics were different, but equally as beautiful.
In the photo below (top left) you’ll see how the columns support the terrace above. All along the terrace is a long bench in the form of a sea serpent. The curves of the serpent bench help to provide more intimate seating as well as a railing system to keep you on the roof and not off the edge. Gaudí included many elements from Catalan religious mysticism and ancient poetry into the mosaics of the Park. It was fantastic!
“In the design of Park Güell, Gaudí unleashed all his architectonic genius and put to practice much of his innovative structural solutions that would become the symbol of his organic style and that would culminate in the creation of the Basilica and Expiatory Church of the Holy Family (Catalan: Sagrada Familia).” – READ MORE about Park Güell HERE
In the beautiful palm tree pictured above, there was a bird that was not happy with our presence below. It could have been a parrot, but I guess we’ll never know, since it never showed its squawking head, even after waiting around for quite a while to see what was making all that racket.
The park was officially opened as a public park in 1926, and in 1984 UNESCO declared the park a World Heritage Site. If you’re planning a trip to Barcelona, you HAVE to stop here!
If this blog has left you clamoring for more, here’s an older, but pretty good video showing more of Park Güell. Click away all the ads and view full screen if you like. Enjoy! https://youtu.be/Deq8vfb71kE
Next stop: A Walk-About in Barcelona