I don’t think it will come as a surprise to anyone to hear me say this place is astounding. It is at times beautiful, at times hilarious, and at times confusing — sometimes all three at once. And of course this was one of the places I really wanted to see in Barcelona, alongside the beach and… yeah, the beach and this were pretty much it. I’m not going to lie and say I’m knowledgeable about architecture, because I’m not — when I studied Art History in high school, my priorities were very clearly painting >>>>> architecture >>> sculpture — but when I first saw this complicated, towering creature of a church, my breath caught in my chest a little bit.
If you first see the Sagrada Familia in daylight, I think the effect might be lessened a little, because you see all the weird-ass shit at the same time as the glorious, intimidating gothic structure, or maybe it was seeing it at night first (no lights) that made it look less imposing in the sunshine. Either way, it is a lot. I hope I can make it back to Barcelona and go inside sometime.
As usual, I’m going to let the pictures speak for themselves, as they’re far more eloquent than I could possibly be on this subject.
I’m a Slytherin, I had to share this picture. To be honest, the side and back of the church weren’t nearly as interesting to me as the front; I have kind of boring taste, and Art Nouveau doesn’t always do it for me. But the gargoyles were pretty awesome.
Annemari and I made it to the Sagrada Familia twice that weekend; first we set out on our first afternoon there, only to be distracted by the beach and then caught in a downpour — by the time we made it to Carrer de Mallorca, it was pitch black. We let the Internet mislead us into thinking that the church façade was lit up sometimes, but apparently the reality is closer to ‘seldom.’ Still, holy shit is that a tall spiky building in the middle of the night. We fell half in love with the thing on sight.
My favorite part of the Barcelona subway, which I wasn’t a fan of in general, was the escalators coming out of the stations (but not in; my suitcase and I were not amused). Also how small the stations are — you rarely have to walk forever to get to the trains.
Pictured above are two tourists with zero respect for public property. They kept climbing and being told off and look, I get that you have a photographer — he was lying on his back on the floor — and you’re trying to get cool pics with the Sagrada Familia as a backdrop but that street sign is not going to hold you without bending. I was mildly outraged by this whole thing. Also amused. But mostly outraged.
Across the street from the main façade there was a tiny park with a little pond in it.
And across the street from the back façade of the church, there was a little park without a pond in it. It didn’t have as many pretty flowers as the first, and I wanted to get to the Parc Güell at some point, so we didn’t linger here as much. But it was nice.
In short: A+, would go again.