Sunday, November 29, 2009

Barcelona - Where art, music and sports come together

Barcelona, the capital of Catalunya is located on the Mediterranean coast. The Mediterranean Sea appears strikingly blue.

Barcelona is recognized as a global city because of its role in finance, sports, entertainment and arts. There are several grand old buildings in the city.

Modern hotels are found on the waterfront.

The Romans founded Barcelona a few years BC. 

The Roman walls can be seen in parts of the 13th century Cathedral of Barcelona, which also has excavations of the Roman period inside the building. 

Barcelona seems to be all about Antoni Gaudi. Most tourist attractions are built around Gaudi designed buildings and other works of art. The Sagrada Família is a massive Roman Catholic church under construction since 1882. 

Designed by Antoni Gaudí, the church is one of Spain's top tourist attractions. Construction is expected to be completed sometime around 2030. One section is likely to open for worship in 2010. The church has three facades. The Nativity facade is towards the East. 

It depicts the early life of Jesus Christ.

The columns of the interior are a unique Gaudi design, branching like trees to support their load, with changing surfaces of the helical columns. 

Park Guell, designed by Gaudi, is one of the most well known of numerous parks in Barcelona. 

A flamenco dancer in a traditional, fiery red costume.

Musicians play different types of unique instruments. Wind instruments...

And percussion instruments...

Long, curved park bench with inlaid mosaic designs to sit on and absorb the atmosphere.

A unique tiled ceiling design.

Hmmm... this gentleman seems to be missing his neck.

A musician plays on the harp, while tourists make the most of the photo opportunities. Sorry, I was unable to get a 'tourist free' moment.

A Gaudi designed building in Park Guell. 

FC Barcelona is a sports club, the football team is one of the top clubs in the UEFA Champions League. 

If I was coach for just a day.

The chapel (for a quick prayer before the game). 

Game on...!!!

The Camp Nou stadium is the largest in Europe (view from the press box).

There is a very interesting museum inside the stadium, as well as a must-have souvenir store.

Place de Catalunya, a mix of old and new architectures, narrow streets, cafes, musicians and shops. 

Musicians play ancient Spanish folk instruments. 

Modern performers break dance.

Locals pick up and drop off cycles all over Barcelona, based on a smart-card system not available for visitors. 

Interesting streets around the Place de Catalunya. 

The Museu Picasso has one of the most extensive collections of Pablo Picasso. 

Photography is prohibited inside the museum. The museum is housed in five adjoining medieval palaces in Barcelona's La Ribera, a short walk through narrow streets off Place De Catalunya.

Time for a strong cup of coffee, and prepare to head home the next day.

== Nov 26 to 29, 2009 = =