Aida Zabidi

Park Guell is one of my favourite places in Barcelona, a public park that was designed by Gaudi in all his artistic form. I’m halfway between surprised and amazed that he seemed to have so much artistic freedom granted to him by the Catalans, considering how much of his project involved public works.

The Catalans are an artistic lot indeed.

Park Guell is actually a public park, one that was originally meant to be part of a housing site which didn’t quite come to fruition. Apparently Guell himself, who I assume the park was named after, was one of the more successful businessmen of the time. Guell himself commissioned Gaudi to design the park, and it was both the imaginations of Gaudi and Guell that brought the park to the state it is today.

Mosaics bearing the Guell name
There are two areas of the park; a free area and the main area where you have to pay to get into – and like some of the other attractions in Barcelona, I would definitely advise to buy timed tickets in advance – the earlier the better! You have to wait your turn to actually wander into the paid area of the park, and it does get a lot more crowded as the day goes. Entrances are timed as well, and we ran into a few people who had come the same time we did in the morning, but were only about to get tickets for about 2 or 3 in the afternoon.

I love the park.

The palm tree lined paths are a wonderful walk, and there are always some musicians that have stopped to busk. There’s so much colour in the mosaics, and yet it stops short of garishness. 

There’s so much detail that goes into all the different areas, from the undulating staircases and the mosaics that lined the walls and the different structures. There’s also something whimsical and a little bit fantastical, just like a lot of Gaudi’s other works; at times I almost expect the Mad Hatter to pop up and tell us we’re going down the rabbithole.

The collonaded pillars of the central court.
Walk up the terrace with the famous mosaic salamander and the curves of the staircase that turn into the enclaves below the terrace view. Walk past the sloping columns and make your way up to the staircase to the central terrace where panoramic views of the city await you.

Definitely worth a morning out – Park Guell was a lovely walk and you would definitely need at least a couple of hours to truly enjoy the park. Bring your own water, and while restrooms are available, you need to pay for them and it can be a little bit pricey!

You can buy tickets here, and I would definitely recommend you do!

I also wrote about visiting Casa Battlo and Sagrada Familia, which you can find here. It would even be possible to do all three in a day, however it might be a bit of a rush - depending on how you like to organize you day.

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