Results 1-10of 12 Reviews
Birchircara, Malta Majjistral, Malta
March 6, 2013
From journal Catalan culture, distinctive architecture and sandy beaches
London, England, United Kingdom
July 6, 2012
Barcelona Part 9,
by Joy S
Manchester, England, United Kingdom
April 19, 2012
From journal Sightseeing in Barcelona
Manhattan, New York
May 3, 2002
While it’s possible to get lost in this history, it seems that all paths eventually lead to the Cathedral de la Seu. Built from 1298 to 1450, the Gothic cathedral has very imposing front and a soaring interior, lit only by votive candles and streaks of sun when it passes overhead. The cloister, the ribbed vaults, the pulpit and choir stalls are the most remarkable artistic features.
The Cathedral complex also comprises three medieval palaces: Cases dels Canonges, Casa del Degà, with a restored Renaissance façade, and Casa de l'Ardiaca (Archdeacon's house), the most interesting of the three with its flamboyant Gothic architecture.
Sunday mornings at 11, people gather in the Pla de St. Jaume in front of the cathedral to perform a folkdance – Catalan dance of the sardana. They join hands and step out a rhythmic ritual, accompanied by ``cobla,'' a musical ensemble of stringed and wind instruments.
We came across many historical sites on our walks – the Plaça de Ramon Berenguer el Gran, one of the most spectacular places in Old Barcelona, with its Roman walls and broken section of the old Palau Reial Major wall with a 40 meter bell tower.
Beyond the square, is Plaça del Rei. Designed as a complete unit, considered the noblest square in Old Barcelona (we loved the Gaudi lampposts). Facing the square are the Palau Reial Major (Royal Palace, 11-14th century), Chapel of Santa Ágata, and the Museu d'Història de la Ciutat (City's History Museum). Our favorite -- the great hall called the Saló del Tinell, especially the six stone semi-circular arches. In the patio there are four Corinthian columns belonging to the old Roman temple of Emperor Augustus.
A walk down C. Banys Nous and C. Palla, led us to the old Jewish Quarter, or Call. In this sector there are several ancient houses, the lovely, peaceful square Plaça Sant Felip Neri, and the Church of Sant Sever with its priceless Baroque altarpiece.
Nearby are 2 squares -- Plaça de Sant Josep Oriol and the beautiful and harmonious square of Plaça del Pi. Here we find the solemn church of the same name with a rose window noted for being the largest in the world. In the two squares there are weekly art and antique markets, and nearby are various antique shops which we were enchanted by – more like being in a museum – only you could touch the items of history.
While here, be sure to stop at the famous "granjas" café’s -- we savored their coffee, hot chocolate and cream filled bakery delights.
A wonderful walk in the Barri, near Parc du Citudella, is to The Picasso Museum -- a must! – see my write up in the next chapter.
From journal BARCELONA 2002 Int'l Year of Gaudi
November 9, 2004
Warning: keep your feet, knees, and shoulders covered when entering the cathedral, as it is considered disrespectful to wear revealing clothing in a sacred place. Plenty of tourists walk in with their sandals, shorts, and tank tops, but who wants to be the ugly tourist?
From journal Busy Barcelona
by Celia Coene
July 19, 2007
El Barri Gòtic (the Gothic quarter) is the medieval quarter of Barcelona. I recommend that you spend time just walking around in the maze of narrow streets and explore the many squares: I love the Plaza Reial, for example as it bears a kind of splendor when you enter through its arched gateways. The neoclassical facade surrounds the many palm trees on the square. Located just off the Rambla it is usually a little quieter, although late at night there are often a few drunk tourists who end up celebrating their vacation loudly in the fountain at the center.
Around 9pm, a line starts forming halfway to the center for the restaurant Les Quinze Nits. It is pretty decent, and despite the long line, the wait is not that long as they have people enter by groups of 20 people or so. My definite favorite hang out on the Plaza is Tarantos, where you can experience some excellent flamenco in a tiny room for 6 Euros + the cost of a drink inside, and it is a different show every night. It lasts about 45 minutes, but it is laid back and so much better than the big touristy shows that they try to sell you on La Rambla for 50 Euros.
Another main square in the Barri Gotic is the Plaça Sant Jaume, where the City Hall (or Ajuntament) stands proud. It seems like every street from the Barri Gotic merges onto this square. Apparently it is where the locals demonstrate and is basically an important meeting place. I was there during Christmas 2006 and they had a huge beautiful nativity in the middle, but I believe that they have that every year. Something to see.
The Plaça del Pi is interesting too, especially on Thursday morning when they have a little market of local goods such as cheese, meat, and cakes. On Calle Bisbe you cannot miss the "bridge of sighs" which is quite pretty and photographed but which was also apparently built in the 1920's... Quite a disappointment, but still a nice picture. Don't forget to look up to see the gargoyles and gorgeous facades.
The Cathedral of Santa Eulalia certainly is a highlight of the Barri Gotic. You can enter for free in the mornings and late afternoons to visit the church and the cloister, however the rest of the time is dedicated to worshipers and ticket holders so plan your visit. Inside you can see the tomb of Santa Eulalia, a 13 year old girl and saint patron of Barcelona who, in 303 A.D, was said to be rolled down a hill in barrel full of broken glass and nails for protesting to the governor against his cruelty towards the Christians. Behind the Cathedral is the Baixada de Santa Eulalia, the slope where the horrifying event took place.
From journal Barcelona: You 'Gaudi' See This!
August 10, 2006
From journal My Spain Adventure!
New York, New York
July 26, 2001
Crossing over Laietana into La Ribera, take the diagonal street C/de le Argenteria and you'll come upon Plaza Santa Maria on which sits the Basilica de Santa Maria del Mar. In the evenings, the wine bar on the plaza serves drinks and snacks on the square - this was my favorite place to sit and sip! Just east of here, Pg del Born is lined with late night bars and clubs.
In the daytime, however, you can continue east to Parc de la Ciutadella. After enjoying the park, you can keep going to the beach and the Olympic Village. There's a pretty good clickable map of Barcelona at www.bcn.es
From journal Living it up in Barcelona
May 17, 2003
We also found many different bars and pubs, as well as plenty of restaurants. Make sure you drop by a tasca (local bar/cafe) for some fresh cafe con leche. Everywhere we went, we always ended up loving the coffee. Yes, you will find the occasional Starbucks trying to invade the regional ambience with its overpriced and overrated cappuccino. Trust me, the bar next door will serve you a much better cup of coffee for 1.20 euros, as opposed to 3.95 euros at Starbucks. The regional food is basically the same in this area. The main difference is how much you're charged for it--it's all based on the restaurant’s location.
You'll find nonstop action all day and all night in Barri Gotic.
From journal Spain in 10 days- 1st stop: Barcelona
Todmorden, England, United Kingdom
June 26, 2002
The old cathedral has to be mentioned first. Its vast size does not detract from its appeal as a splendid Gothic building, and the streets to one side of it are narrow, picturesque and interesting. On the other side is a huge square where local people were dancing in great circles on a feast day. The interior is well worth a look and the cloisters are great.
But stay awake - I was set up for a scam here. Something must have gone wrong and I ended up OK, but not everyone has been taken to the fountain in the cloisters for a wash!
Next I will mention another church which I think is just as good, the interior at least, for the quality of its stained glass windows. This is Santa Maria del Mar. There are other churches mentioned in the Rough Guide as well, but it is not possible to do everything.
The old Palau Reial now houses the Museu d'Historia de la Ciutat. The building itself is sufficient justification for going in, but inside you can see in situ the remains of Roman and Visigothic Barcelona.
Other old lay buildings are the Ayuntament, the Town Hall (where all sorts of figures in stilts were preparing to go in procession last time I was there), the Palau de la Generalitat opposite (the home of the Catalan Provincial Government), the Museu Marès (which I defied the Rough guide by not visiting) and the Picasso museum (which is biased strongly in the direction of his early life and works, but very interesting, and again the building justifies entry).
Then on the other side of La Rambla, but still in the Barri Gòtic, are several important sights. I did not go in the Liceu although I am sure it would be good, but I bought my lunch to carry from the market every day and everybody should see it. It is a real gem, probably exaggerated by the fact that such a central market is becoming rarer. Lastly, of the older buildings, is the Antic Hospital de la Santa Creu, now used by the University. You can wander around the old garden and cloisters, sadly I saw overmuch litter when I did.
The Palau de la Música Catalana is probably in the Barri Gòtic but I include it under Modernisme.
From journal Barcelona - a kind of capital