Oh my Gaudi!

Today we visited two of Antonio Gaudi’s most famous works: Parc Guell and La Sagrada Familia. A modernist architect at the turn of the century, Gaudi must have been Divinely inspired. This man was a genius; it is hard to find adequate words to describe his marvels. Before touring Gaudi’s works we stopped at El Mercat de Boqueria, a market along La Rambla, a wide street leading up to the northern area of the city. Inside the market vendors were selling colorful candies and fruits. Further back slabs of meat hung from the ceiling and vendors were selling fish, eggs and bread. After breakfast at the market we headed up to Parc Guell.

Parc Guell was a maze of winding pathways traversing a hill side overlooking the city. There were so many panoramic views of Barcelona–the shining sea and skyline were exquisite. At the front entrance to the park was a beautiful building decorated with mosaics. We sat for a moment on the iconic mosaic benches lining the top of the structure. After lunch and a cup of coffee we hiked to La Sagrada Familia, an unearthly and breathtaking cathedral on which Gaudi worked until his untimely death in 1926. We stayed until closing. Although still under construction, La Sagrada Familia is striking. Soaring ceilings, intricate masonry, enormous stained-glass windows–this was just the beginning. Although I can try to describe the cathedral, I don’t have the right words to describe my experience. As I sat and prayed, admiring the otherworldly beauty surrounding me, I felt like God was right there sitting next to me. Whether or not you believe in God, or a Higher Power, Gaudi’s church is a sacred place of peace; it is a sanctuary. Gaudi had an incredible ability; he was a visionary and he left the world with a beautifully sacred space in which to contemplate life’s great questions.

-Maggie

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