Wednesday, April 24, 2019
Today I set out on “the green line” to one of the more popular attractions in Barcelona – Park Güell. Without a necessary reservation to go into the areas of notoriety, I felt that even a stroll around its grounds would be a great way to enjoy this sunny morning.
Had I known how many sets of stairs I would ascend as well as the steep grades throughout the park, I may have chosen an activity more suitable to my post Camino aching feet (like reading, napping; repeat).
Overall it turned out to be a nine mile excursion!! It was lush, beyond creative, a lovely and extensive oasis of spaces – and crowded! I am so happy I chose to visit! The official website, “parkguell.barcelona”, has some detailed information about the specific spaces and features.
Park Güell was not designed as a public park, but rather as a residential area for wealthy families. Ultimately “the complex conditions for sale of the plots, under old emphyteutic lease contracts, the lack of a suitable transport system and the highly exclusive character of the development all made it unviable. A lack of buyers led to the works being abandoned in 1914, with only two of the sixty houses envisaged having been built. The park thus became a large private garden, which Güell allowed to be used for public events, while it began to appear in tourist guides to Barcelona as one of the attractions of the city.
Eusebi Güell died at his house in 1918, and his heirs offered the park to the City Council, which agreed to purchase it, at its municipal plenary meeting held on 26 May 1922. It was opened as a municipal park in 1926.” (from parkguell.barcelona)
Park Güell was recognized as an artistic monument in 1969 and declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1984.
Oh so much to do in this fine city! Am I ever happy to have made Barcelona a frequent destination in my visits to Spain, allowing me to enjoy it’s wonders bit by bit.