Not exactly in Barcelona, but nevertheless a fantastic day trip, the monastery of Montserrat is absolutely magnificent.
First and foremost: the landscape. You can see it coming from a mile off; weird bulbous rock formations bulging out.
On the way up, there's a fantastic Romanesque chapel with amazing frescoes, and the whole area is riddled with hermits' caves.
The church itself is vast, 1000m above sea-level, and (oddly) reassuringly hideous in scale and detail.
Still, it's a mighty impressive spectacle and the surrounding countryside is simply breathtaking.
90 minutes from Barcelona (near Lleida)
I'd recommend it because it's a beautiful church designed by Gaudi, an artist. It wasn't finished when I went but it was still beautifully carved, a masterpiece I'd say. It reminded me of an amazing, whacky jungle; there were towers painted incredibly and when you climbed up to the very top you could see all the wonderful sights of Barcelona. It's not like any other church I've ever been in and well worth the effort to climb to the top.
Ella Lazenby (age 9).
Barcelona, metro Sagrada Familia.
Obligatory on any visitor’s itinerary is the church of the Holy Family designed by the ultra-pious architect, Gaudi. George Orwell said that this was one of the ugliest buildings on Earth, and expressed wonder as to why the Anarchists hadn’t wrecked it in the Spanish Civil War. It is worth seeing for its ugliness. The stonework is like icing on a cake that has melted. It is not worth the eight Euro to go inside and see what is essentially a building site of scaffolding and cranes. Rightly or wrongly, it has become a symbol of the city.
While everyone flocks to Gaudi’s still-in-progress spires, it’s very much worth remembering that there’s a medieval cathedral still standing proud in Barcelona’s old town. There’s perhaps a touch of irony too, in the fact that the finishing touch was not applied to this building, in the early 20th century, until nearly 700 years after its inception. It is beautiful, as are its surroundings, and revealing of how the centre of this city has shifted according to fashion. Don’t pass it by.
Placa de la Seu
You cannot come to Barcelona and not see Gaudi's cathedral masterpiece. Truly awe-inspiring. When I was there was only half completed but should be much nearer to completion by now.
Couldn't be easier. Sagrada Familia has it's own metro station (strangely enough called Sagrada Familia) on Line 2. Just catch the metro heading towards the eastern terminus of Line 2 at Pep Ventura. The cathedral is a five minute walk from the metro station
The best views in the city! Climb El Sagrat Cor de Jesus for the unbelievable contrast between the city in front of you and the tree-covered mountains behind you. Also fun is the tram and funicular railway you should take to get there.
FGC stop Av. Tibidabo, then take Tramvia Blau followed by the funicular railway to the top
The Santa Maria del Mar is a beautiful church in the Barri Gottic area of Barcelona. It is just gorgeous and is as all churches should be: right in the centre of the city, not hidden behind grounds or mysterious gates. Inside it is so peaceful and surprisingly dark in comparison to the bustling street and bright blue skies of outside. There is a beautiful stain glass window, which glows like jewels in the wall. Also on a summer Sunday, the streets come alive with the brightly coloured gowns of wedding guests and the streets are littered with rose petal confetti.
At the end of Carrer de L'Argenteria
Send your feedback or queries to firstname.lastname@example.org