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Parc de la Ciutadella


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Parc de la Ciutadella, street art and relaxation.

Translated by Beth Taylor — 7 months ago

Original text by Laura Sastre

Hello again to my brave and adventurous readers!

This post is specially dedicated to my friends Xavi and Noe, who got me to discover this city in such a magical, enjoyable, casual and very special way.

And I think that it was thanks to their company and what great guides they are that I enjoyed all of the amazing things you can find in Barcelona as much as I would've as a little kid.

Discovering every corner of Barcelona.

Starting with the journey, it takes 2 and a half hours to get from Madrid Atocha station to Barcelona by high speed train (AVE).

I remember the train journey being spectacular and that we went through the Aragon and Catalonia regions, the landscapes were beautiful.

It was the first time I'd ever been on the high speed train (AVE) and I have never been more at ease on a means of transport, it's a luxury you can treat yourself to now and then. The tickets cost around €55.

When I arrived in Barcelona at the Sants station, I took the metro to the Arc de Triunf metro stop on the line 4.

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This metro stop has the same name as the monument at its entrance, our first tourism stop: the Parc de la Ciutadella.

As you pass through the amazing arch, we stopped to take some photos, you'll go from an urban atmosphere to being surrounded by 17 hectares of nature, greenery and gardens to explore, in the blink of an eye.

You'll find a huge number of spectacular things and a huge variety of culture, from a circus artist spinning inside a giant hoop, to bands playing African music with their drums and dancing to these percussion instruments, as well as acrobats sliding down fabrics coming down from tree branches and creating a magical atmosphere which will make you stop every couple of steps to admire the incredible talent concentrated in this park.

This park has a lot of prior history relating to nobility, so you could even say that its fame precedes it, but it was in 1888, with a view to having a universal expo, that the park was built, with the collaboration of the well-known Catalan artist Antonio Gaudí.

This link will take you to a great 2D map of the park, it has the points of interest labelled.

The Parc de la Ciutadella has, among lots of attractions, a huge waterfall, a big tourist attraction, but owing to bad luck, the waterfall didn't have any water in when I was there, because of building works...

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But regardless, I could appreciate its architecture and actually the statues it's made up of are beautiful, as is the impressive arch topped with people on horseback finished in gold and dragons guarding its borders.

What's more, the water feature is surrounded by balconies to its right, as you can see in the picture, you could walk along them and get a different perspective on the monument.

If you find it at its usual prime state and with its water levels fully filled up, you'll see the park's lake, you can go out on it and rent a row boat to go on a lovely trip on its water and enjoy the Barcelona sunset surrounded by nature, far away from the traffic and day-to-day stress.

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In the park, you also have the Zoology and Geology museum, for those of you who are interested in natural sciences, its an open air museum and the urban and artistic culture found in it is incredible.

At the end of the park, near the statue of Wellington, you'll be able to confirm what I'm telling you. If you look down, there's a beautiful map of Barcelona right beneath your feet, you can walk on it and it helps you to get orientated in a very nice and fun way.

There was a lot left to visit in the park, but afternoons are for going for a lovely stroll, enjoying some music and a coffee in one of the park's kiosks.

When we left, we went to get an artesanal ice cream at an ice cream shop called OGGI, which stands for "Oficina Gelato Gusto Italiano" (Italian Gelato Office).

You can see that they have even taken their time to come up with the name, since its the same line that makes the ice cream, I'd qualify it as a denomination of origin. The ice cream here tastes incredible and, since nobody can beat the Italians in this field, honestly, the way they make gelato is truly magical.

The place is on Carrer Comtal street, near Plaça Catalunya and a short distance away from the Arc de Triomf. As well as having delicious and very varied recipes, it has a menu that has all of the different varieties and the allergens they contain, shown by rows of cards stuck on the wall, which gives a very good first impression of the place.

I'll leave you a picture:

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Aside from having lots of awards and, as I said, the taste of the ice cream and its texture being incredible, the best thing is that they let you try the different flavours if you're an indecisive person, like me!

It's always amazing to find places to enjoy different flavours, and this ice cream shop will satisfy any gourmet palate. I would absolutely recommend it.

I hope that you've enjoyed this post about my first tour of the Parc de la Ciutadella on my first day visiting Barcelona, and it didn't end here...

Thanks for reading and I'll see you in the next post about this magnificent city!

For more information about what to do in this area of Barcelona, you can go and read this post.

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