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"Sagrada Familia" Sagrada Familia Tip by Blatherwick

Sagrada Familia, Barcelona: 471 reviews and 1,068 photos

  Sagrada Familia
by Blatherwick

The Temple Expiatori de la Sagrada Familia is Antoni Gaudí's unfinished masterpiece. This is one of Barcelona's most popular tourist attractions. Construction on this church will continue at least until 2041.

Even though the Sagrada Familia is far from finished, it is well worth a visit. You can visit the crypt were Gaudí is buried. A museum tells the story of this great architect and the history of the church. I would also recommend visiting the towers. A long climb will lead you to the top of a tower from where you have a magnificent view over Barcelona.

The idea of a new church was launched by a devote organization whose goal was to bring an end to the dechristianisation of the Barcelonese, which had started with the industrialization and increasing wealth of the city. A plot of land in the new Eixample district was bought in 1877. The architect Francisco de Paula del Villar designed a neo gothic church and lead the construction which started in 1882.

One year later, the modernist architect Antonio Gaudí took over as lead architect at the age of 31. Instead of sticking to the original plans, Gaudí changed the design drastically. The neo-gothic style made way for Gaudí's trademark modernist style, which was based on forms found in nature. When he died in 1926 only one facade (the nativity facade), one tower, the apse and the crypt were finished. Because Gaudí was constantly improvising and changing the design while construction was going on, he left few designs and models. And most of these were destroyed during the civil war in 1936.

Still, architects now have a clear idea of what Gaudí had in mind. When finished, the church will be able to accommodate 13,000 people, have a total of 18 towers. Four Towers on each of the three facades represent the 12 apostles. Another four towers represent the 4 evangelists. They will surround the largest tower, dedicated to Jesus Christ. The last tower, dedicated to Virgin Mary, will be built over the apse.

Address: Carrer de Mallorca 401
Directions: Metro: Line 2 or 5 Station: Sagrada Familia
Phone: 93 207 30 31

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  • Written Jan 9, 2005
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