Ranked #26 in our countdown of ‘100 Ultimate Travel Experiences of a Lifetime’.
If any one person has stamped their personality and creative vision so completely on a city, it is Antoni Gaudí on Barcelona.
The Catalan city is liberally dotted with the architect’s distinctive fantastical version of Art Nouveau, from the Park Güell to the Casa Batlló museum.
But his design tour de force is the Sagrada Família, which he began work on in 1883 (construction itself began in 1882 under another architect) and which is still a giant work in progress today due to the fact that no taxpayer money has been used to fund it.
As an expiatory church it is paid for by donations and the admission price paid by the millions of tourists who visit.
Optimists have construction finishing sometime in the first third of the 21st century, but it might be too early to hold your breath on that just yet.
“Gaudi’s buildings are what makes Barcelona so photogenic. He is the city’s most famous son and his organic, crazy, original works make the city what it is.”
– Sally Webb