One of the most commonly visited places in Barcelona is the Palau de la Música Catalana, which is understandable because it is quite beautiful inside and out. However, it does carry a steep price tag… €18 a person. I was almost tempted to skip this beauty, but it definitely is something worth seeing once in your life. Many people mistakenly think this is yet another marvellous piece of architecture by Gaudi, but it was actually designed by Lluís Domènech i Montaner, one of Gaudi’s rivals.
The tour starts with a 5 minute video describing the making of the building and also the importance. Numerous world-renowned figures have performed here and insist that it is one of the most magical and honouring places to be.
The first thing you notice when you walk inside is the ceiling. It is a dome made of glass that extends down towards the floor and is in the shape of the sun. It allows the building to be filled with beautiful, natural light. Never seen anything quite like it! There is also beautiful detail on the rest of the ceiling in the shape of roses, yet another inspiration from nature.
During the tour, they also take you out onto one of the little patio areas which has some beautiful mosaic pillars. Throughout the building you see references to Catalan culture, such as in the windows and on the ceilings. And besides that… I don’t really have much to say about this building. It was beautiful, no doubt, but I think the tour was pretty lacking considering the steep price tag.
After that, my host family and I went to visit the Basílica de Santa María del Mar in El Born. It is definitely a beautiful cathedral, and located in a very nice area (I love El Born!) but honestly, if you’ve been to as many cathedrals as I have been to… it isn’t all that special. However, the area surrounding it is quite lovely… many cute and artistic shops and some great restaurants and tapas bars to visit! If you go there at night it is also a really nice area to listen to live music.
After wandering around some more, we ended up at the famous La Boquería market. I had heard so many things about this place, so I was very city to finally get to see it. It is basically a huge marketplace where you can buy pretty much any food item for cheap. It is a sensory overload… there’s so many smells, colors, and sights to see all the while trying to push your way through the crowd. The vendors are smart and take any chance possible to try and get you to buy something. This is also a place known for pick-pockets, and it is definitely smart to hold onto your bag and be cautious. But it is definitely worth experiencing! I’d love to go back. I’ll shut my mouth now, the pictures speak for themselves…