Posted by: Gary Guertin | November 11, 2012

21. Croatia/Med./Ft. Laud. Air/Cruise – Barcelona, Spain

Hi All,

We made it to Barcelona, Monday, Oct. 29th and we’re only going to one place: “The Sagrade Familia”  The story behind this “Cathedral” or “Temple”, or “Basilica’ or just plain “Church” is that it is probably one of the most beautiful, of what ever category you want to put it in, in the world. And the most fantastic thing is it isn’t even finished. It is the work of Antonio Gaudi, the famous architect, who was years ahead of his time, even using recycled material in his works.  The Holy Family Cathedral was started in 1882. Gaudi devoted the last 8 years of his life trying to get it built but it was far from complete when he died in 1926.  Susy and I last visited the Cathedral about 1984 when the only thing that had been finished was the outside façade and a model of what the Cathedral would look like when it was finished.  Since that time, even though years had gone by with no construction, the government of Barcelona, and many donations have been moving the project along, and we were anxious to see it today.  We were shocked at what we saw, and again I’m not going to be able to cover in a few photos the beauty of this building.  Not finished, it’s scheduled to be completed in 2022 or 2024.  Believe me, if Susy and I are around we’re coming back.

First look at the front, which was there in 1984 when we were last there:

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You can see the newer construction on the left.  Now look at that front door up close:

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The plaque of the Cathedral:

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To get inside the Cathedral we had to wait in a line around two hours.  It was worth every minute, and I was able to get many pictures of the exterior.  Here’s a couple of side views:

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As you can tell there are statues everywhere on the outside walls.  Here’s just one up close:

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Even as work continues on the outside walls, the major change for Susy and I was that the interior of the Cathedral had been closed in and again, though work continued, what we saw when we entered knocked us over.  Here’s a look at the main naïve from the back of the church:

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Now look further up at the ceiling:

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And finally the ceiling:

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Here’s a view of one of the sides:

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In case you haven’t noticed the stain glass windows, here’s one of the many groupings:

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When the Cathedral was closed in, plain glass windows were used.  Now little by little as the stain glass windows are finished, the plain glass is being replaced.  Here’s what these stain glass windows do to the light in the church:

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Susy and I just sat in the middle of this beautiful building and marveled at the majestic detail that was evident everywhere you looked .  Look at those columns, it’s almost as if the building is looking up and praying to God.  I wish you all could have been with us.  Church music was being played and you can just imagine a mass being held with a choir of 1500 singers (the church has seating for a choir of 1500).  Yes, we’ll be coming back.

We did do one other thing while we were in Barcelona.  Susy couldn’t wait to go to a “Tapas” restaurant and have tapas and wine.  Here she is after getting her treat:

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That’s it for Barcelona, now it’s on to Cadiz, another port where Susy can get her tapas.

Love You All,

Gary (alias Gagu)


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