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Sightseeing in Barcelona

The most well-known creation of Barcelona is probably their soccer club, but the metropolis has much more to offer. No matter what you like, there is something that will fit your taste. Hundreds of diverse shops, the beach, the bars, the restaurants, the architecture, or simply the flair of a Mediterranean city.

One of the most crowded places is the so-called “La Rambla”, which is a 1250 metre (0,77 mi) long street in the centre of the city. It starts close to the harbour, at the Columbus statue, and goes all the way up to the Place of Catalonia. With barely any traffic and large pedestrian areas there’s more than enough space for thousands of people. In its proximity there are dozens of museums, galleries, theatres, and bars for all kinds of products.

The beach stretches for several kilometres and is almost always more than 25 metres broad, which leaves a lot of space for people who just want to chill out in the hot and soft sand. The promenades and neighbouring streets are home to hundreds of different restaurants and bars, giving tourists plenty of opportunity to drink and eat. However, in recent years there have been occasional reports of venomous jellyfish roaming the coasts of the Mediterranean Sea, so proceed with a healthy dose of caution.

Barcelona has been home to many great artists, such as Antoni Gaudí and Joan Miró. The most outstanding creation of Gaudí is the Sagrada Familia, which is a cathedral in the centre. The construction began only in 1882, which is fairly late given that most other big European cathedrals have been built over 5 centuries earlier. Unfortunately, the construction was slow, because it was reliant on donations and because the Spanish civil war broke out. However, thanks to modern technology, the construction is speeding up, and the completion is scheduled for 2026. Despite that, this catholic church has already gotten a huge reputation and was added to the UNESCO World Heritage. One of the main reasons for this is the way it has been planned by Gaudí, who always followed nature as a template for his various buildings. Worth mentioning are also Parc Guell and Casa Mila.
Barcelona is also home to a very liberal group of street performers, who can be found in every corner of Barcelona, even in the hallways of the metro and narrow alleys away from mass tourism. Their skills are by no means limited to a certain genre, so you can find everything from pop over heavy metal to folklore.

As always, there are always downsides, and I feel obligated to report of that as well. Namely, the city has a problem with thieves and illegal prostitution. But you should be fine if you take care of your belongings and don’t have too much money with you.

To conclude: Barcelona is a very diverse city with lots of opportunity to entertain yourself. During the few days that I spent there in September 2016 I saw a lot of things I had never even heard of before, and I would go there again in a heartbeat.

--- Katie

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