Park Guell is one of Antoni Gaudi's masterpieces, built between 1900 to 1912, originally as part of a housing development for wealthy city folk seaking a respite from the factory air. The development idea however was not successful, and the land was eventually turned in to a city park, fortunately for us!
Get off the metro at station Lesseps, walk down the hill and make a left on a street that looks like this. It's a steep hill reminiscent of San Francisco, but guess what folks, there are two escalators to help the weary tourists up the hill! So look for the street called "Avinguda del Santuari de Sant Josep de la Muntanya" and I know you'll thank me for this little tip that I came across purely by accident!
I think the whole experience is more magical if you start at the top of the park and walk down, little by little discovering all the surprises. So take my advice about the metro station and you'll find yourself at the top of the park!
A first glimpse of the gatehouses at the main entrance to the park.
What is this? A stalagmite inspired promenade!
Quite interesting I must say, and I'm so very impressed by the range of Gaudi's explorations!
A metal gate leads way to .........
..... a large area surrounded by a curving mosaic bench, for which Gaudi is very famous. And that is Gaudi's house in the background, now a museum.
The colorful mosaic benches that look like something we'd do today!
A house high up on the hill.......
Descending another level to the area underneath the mosaic benches, we find large columns and a mosaic ceiling!
So much attention to detail, and so very unique.
I wonder how Gaudi supervised the making of this mosaic?
And down some more stairs, a checkboard wall that's just gorgeous!
And the view looking up from the main entrance, as you can see the park was packed with tourists! There's a mosaic iguana of sorts, behind those green bushes, that everyone wants to photograph, but honestly it's not by any means one of the highlights of the park, in my humble opinion.
A fantastical gate at the entrance.
Playful mosaic details on one of the two gatehouses.
So very charming, and long before Disney!
And such fun details....Gaudi was really very very brave to do something so radically different in it's time.
And certainly worth a special visit. In fact I'm thinking I just might have to go back again, and experience this amazing place yet again! So goodbye for now, Park Guell, you're only a 4 1/2 hour plane ride away, so I think it's safe to dream a little...........?