I’m going to speak about Barcelona, because I went there during the Easter holidays and I think it’s a wonderful town with many things to do and to see.
Barcelona is a city of Catalonia and the second most visited town in Spain.
Some general information
Barcelona city is 91.4 km2 big. It’s the second largest town of Spain considering the population (the first isMadrid). There are about 1.600.000 (one billion six million) people who live in the town and more than 5.000.000 (five billion) people who live in the county of Barcelona.
The town is on the coast, at the seaside, between the Besos and llobregat rivers.
The relief of Barcelona consists of three parts: mountains, plains and deltas.
The town is situated at 180 km of the French border. At the otherside from the Pyrenees, there is a French department with the same culture and language as Catalonia.
A little bit of history
According to the legend, Barcelona’s foundation is due to Hamilcar Barca, who came from Carthage.
Catalonia, and also Barcelona, became a region of Spain when Ferdinand II d’Aragon and Isabelle de Castille got married at the end of the 15 century. Before that, theregion had its own law.
During the 19 century, some independence movements became stronger and Catalonia won a brief autonomy during the second republic. When Franco’s army won against the republicans, Franco prohibited the Catalan language, changed the street’s name to Spanish, and he governed of this region like the other regions in Spain. He wanted this region to be like the others and notindependent. This situation lasted until Franco died in 1975.
Since that day, almost all Catalans are bilingual and the Catalan culture is very different from the Spanish culture.
In Barcelona, people speak two different languages: Spanish and Catalan. In Barcelona people speak Catalan at home, in the street with friends, and at work, but with the tourists they speak Spanish.Food :
The three ingredients often used are tomatoes, olive oil and garlic.
Barcelona is a Mediterranean town and that’s why there are a lot of meals based on seafood.
Moreover, Barcelona’s food is influenced by Valencia (a Spanish town) and France. From Valencia come especially the rice and the paella.
And now two examples of specialities:
The Catalan cream: This is a burnt cream which iseaten cold. On the top there is brown caramelized sugar.
Pa amb tomàquet: To prepare it, you must rub the bread with garlic and tomatoes, and then put oil and salt on it. This is the basic lunch food.
-The “Sagrada Familia”:
This is a big church designed by the architect Antonio Gaudi. The construction of this building began in 1882 and will probably finish in 2030.-The aquarium:
The aquarium of Barcelona is the most important Mediterranean marine leisure and education center. There are 35 aquariums, 11,000 animals of 450 different species and an underwater tunnel which is 80 metres long. This center has already been visited by more than 14 million people.
- The “pedrera” or “casa mila”; Also designed by Gaudi
The “casa mila” is a big frontage sculptedlike waves. The balconies are built in stone crowned with steel (forge) like seaweed and the roof seems like a cockle of a boat.
We can also visit the interior. The decoration is very creative and raffined.
- The zoo:
Barcelona’s Zoo is set in a wonderful garden which is over 100 years old. It covers 13 hectares of Ciutadella Park and contains a collection of some 7,500 animals belonging tomore than 400 species from all over the world.
- Imax Cinema:
It was built in 1995 near the sea. It’s a 3 dimension cinema, so that it seems you were the film and could touch the different characters with your hands. All the films that are presented are documentaries.
- La Rambla :
La Rambla is the most famous avenue in Barcelona. It connects the Plaça de Catalunya to the old port. On...