I could never tire of waking up to the song of the bells, softly serenading me, stretching a wholesome smile across my face, opening my bleary eyes and realising I still had one more day to explore the zest of Barcelona.
Allowing Ruby to choose our itinerary- of course, her choice was a day at the beach, we debated and deliberated, eventually concluding a morning trip to Park Güell and an afternoon by the shore would make a pleasant compromise. Having delightfully figured out the metro system, we jumped on the L3 north to Carmel Hill, in the suburb of La Salut, Garcia.
Park Güell was gifted to Barcelona by Eusebi Güell, a Spanish entrepreneur who profited greatly from the industrial revolution in Catalonia in the late 19th century. A lifelong friend of Antoni Gaudi, working together on many collaborations from the beginning of Gaudi’s career, when Güell saw Gaudí as the man who could provide him with uniquely designed architecture. Bodega Güell (winery) at Garraf, the Pabellones Guell de Pedralbes and Parque Güell, which was originally built as the entrepreneur’s family home, are a few sites presented by the prolific pair.
The entrance to the park is towered by two colourful spires of intricate mosaic made from ceramics, tiles and glass, surrounded by yellow stone, wrought iron and brick. Gaudi’s work infuses oriental, mauresc and gothic influence, with an overwhelming inspiration of organic nature. The Art Nouveau or CatalanModernisme philosophy is spread throughout the twisting paths and unique structures of this Unesco World Heritage Site.
To beat the crowds and for free admission, I would visit the park in the evening after 7.30pm, when you can get lost in the depths of its splendid wonder without the abundant heat and queues of tourists. I would also encourage your voyage to be null of luggage, unlike mine, as I exhaustedly pulled both Ruby and my belongings up and down a few steep hills.
Our downward journey went without fuss and we toured round the Port Vell Marina before lazing on the beach. Early evening arrived and it was time for us to catch the high speed train to Madrid, we completed phase one of our Spanish experience, we are both now excited to see what the capital city of Spain- Madrid has to offer.
Long live the VEF and our blisters, blisters have blisters! QUEEN!