Wednesday, April 17, 2024


Barcelona is the  birthplace of many renowned creatives - Antonio Gaudi Architect, Joan Miro painter and sculptor, Antoni Tapies painter and sculptor and many others. Picasso grew up there and Salvador Dali was born in the small town of Figueres close by. So Barcelona has serious street cred when it comes to creative natives. Upon visiting this beautiful city, you will see the evidence of architecture, art and creative energy around every corner. And if you want to read about a very cool AIRBNB we stayed in just check out one of my former posts HERE. All five of us, my entire family, before grand kids, stayed in this reasonably priced three bedroom/two bath in the heart of Barcelona.

IMHO - the best way to travel in Spain is via train. Like the rest of Europe, the trains in Spain are immaculate, fast, comfortable and cheap. Upon arrival in the capital of Catalonia, you will immediately get a sense of the great art and architecture. Not only that. It is truly one of the cleanest cities I have ever visited.

To make things simple, here is my list of the museums, buildings and other things you should see and do in the "City of Gaudi".

First and foremost - The Sagrada Familia

This masterwork of architecture and art was designed by the modernist architect Antonio Gaudi. In the opinion of the architectural world, Gaudi was Spain's greatest modern architect. Some would even say he was Europe's greatest modernist. That issue has been discussed and written about since 1883 when he took over the design of the magnificent work of religious architecture. He worked on this project for forty three years until his death in 1926. Even though I studied this building in architecture school and had seen hundreds of photographs, I was not prepared for the experience of walking in, sitting in and observing this amazing work of beauty and power. And it is still under construction! The main tower will be 557 feet tall - the tallest religious building in Europe. It is scheduled to be completed in 2026. My suggestion is to go as early in the morning as you can. It is less crowded and the light coming through the stained glass windows is truly something to see.

Park Güell

Park Güell is a truly inspired work of architecture and design also design by Gaudi, it was built from 1900 - 1914 and opened as a public park in 1926. It was also named a World Heritage Site in 1984. The tiled roof terrace of this profoundly creative public place will give you many places to sit and enjoy the views over Barcelona. 

The Father of Surrealism is the one and only Salvador Dali. Dali’s house in Portlligat is where the artist lived for over forty years. He first bought a small fisherman’s cottage in the 1930s. Later, he purchased some nearby homes, enlarging his property. Today, Salvador Dali’s House in Portlligat is a museum where you can see his former home, studio, and library. To say that Dali was a unique artist would be a colossal understatement.  

For an enjoyable daytrip we piled in our rental, kids and all, and drove to Dali's incredible place to see his work up close. You can see more of Dali's work as well as other artists in and around Barcelona in such places as the Barcelona Museum of Contemporary ArtBarcelona is never boring. Just click this link to see all the things you can do in this art filled city - THINGS TO DO IN BARCELONA.

If you can't get to Spain right now and you want to see some of Dali's work, just head to Saint Petersburg, Florida to see the Dali Museum in downtown Saint Pete. It contains the largest collection of Dali works outside of his home in Spain. To read the fascinating story of how the Dali Museum ended up in Saint Petersburg just click Mr. Dali below.

Salvador Dalí

“I do not understand why, when I ask for grilled lobster in a restaurant, I'm never served a cooked telephone.”
― Salvador Dalí
All Vagabonds will enjoy the food in Spain, particularly Barcelona. There are Tapas restaurants everywhere. Typically, small bites of great food are served as you order. The only country that has better food than Spain is Italy.
‘Any reasonable, sentient person who looks at Spain, comes to Spain, eats in Spain, drinks in Spain, they’re going to fall in love. Otherwise, there’s something deeply wrong with you. This is the dream of all the world.’ – Anthony Bourdain

So, as I always say - Just GO! You will not regret it I promise.
Here is a great performance from a great movie -  Ferris Bueller's Day Off. I realize it has nothing to do with Dali or Spain, but you could argue that it has a definite surreal quality! LOL! THE PARADE SCENE - FERRIS BUELLER'S DAY OFF!

1 comment:

  1. Skinny little kid... Who knew?.love you!