Hello again to all you color lovers out there!
Located on Carmel Hill in Barcelona’s Gràcia district, is a public park featuring a qwirky collection of gardens and fun architectural elements. This park is none other than Park Güell, a world heritage site and one of the most visited places in Barcelona.
The idea for Park Güell was conceived by a wealthy entrepreneur named Eusebi Güell, who imagined a luxury home community with an artistic touch among a beautifully landscaped park. He acquired the mountainous terrain in 1885 and later commissioned world-famous architect Antoni Gaudi to design his dream community. The park was built between 1900 and 1914. However, due to a lack of buyers, the homes were never completed. And in 1929, after Güell’s death, the entire park became city property.
Today Park Güell is a beautifully landscaped public park, which is open for free all year round. This highly popular and unconventional park can be accessed from many different streets in Barcelona’s Gràcia district. However, a $10 entrance fee is required if you’d like to access the main entrance to visit the Monumental Zone, which includes the colorful main buildings. These are the most whimsical, most colorful parts of the park, and this is the part we will be focusing on today.
The entrance to the Monumental Zone showcases a colorful set of staircases, a grand hall with massive columns in a somewhat Romanesque style, and a pair of adorable stone and mosaic entrance pavilions, used as a porter’s lodge and museum. Looking over this area is a grand terrace, which was originally designed as a marketplace for residents of the community. Even better to feast your eyes on, is what is known as the world’s longest bench. This famous serpentine bench, twists and bends in undulating waves around the plaza. And as hard as this may be to believe, it was Gaudi’s colleague Josep Maria Jujol who designed this multicolored ceramic masterpiece, not Gaudi himself.
From the serpentine bench you will also get panoramic views of the Mediterranean Sea, the city of Barcelona, the Sagrada Família Basilica (an unfinished Gaudí masterpiece that’s still under construction), as well as a rooftop view of Gaudi’s qwirky entrance pavilions. They kind of remind you of cute little gingerbread houses complete with icing and candy on top. Perhaps something Hansel and Gretel would feast on, maybe even something right out of Candyland.
All throughout the popular main entrance you will come across many decorative elements featuring Gaudí’s signature style. From fountains, to grottoes, to statues, they’re all embellished in the bright candy colored mosaics that make them all look so yummy. By the way, this happy little mosaic lizard at the center of the decorated staircase happens to be the mascot of the park.
Park Güell is accessible via the green Metro line, with Lesseps or Vallcarca as the closest stops. There are also several city and tourists buses that will take you there too. Or you can just take a taxi.
If you’re planning a trip to Barcelona, this has got to be on your list of qwirky things to see. For you architecture buffs out there, it’s a destination designed to knock your socks off. And for you color addicts looking for your daily fix, Park Güell is guaranteed to hit the spot!
So tell me, is this a place you’d like to experience one day? Or perhaps you’ve already checked it off your bucket list?
If you have any additional tips on visiting Park Güell, feel free to share it with us in the comments below.
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With that said, I’d like to thank you for joining me today and we’ll see each other next time.
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