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    9 Amazing Barcelona Facts

    1. Barcelona Has 2 Official Languages
      As the capital of Catalonia, a region that has sought independence, Barcelona has two official languages, Spanish and Catalan. Proud Catalonians would hasten to add that Catalan is a distinct and separate language, not a Spanish dialect. “No diguis que no t’hem avisat.” As they say in Barcelona.
    2. World’s Longest Tea Break?
      No. It isn’t builders’ tea that has caused the basilica of La Sagrada Familia (the sacred family) to take so long. Construction of Catalan architect Antoni Gaudí’s famous cathedral began in 1882. Gaudi tragically died in a tram accident in 1926 at the age of 73, having spent 43 years on the project. He left no plans and with civil wars, a dictatorship, underground trains and all manner of problems, the project kept stalling. Some parts that were rebuilt in the 20th century are so old they’re now having to be redone. To put it in context, the Pyramids of Giza took 20 years to build. La Sagrada Familia, will have taken over 140 years (if finished on the latest suggested date).
    3. It’s Not Home To The Eiffel Tower…
      …but should have been. Gustave Eiffel’s famous landmark was originally designed to sit in Barcelona but was rejected by locals as they thought it was ‘ugly’. Paris was looking for a building to serve as the entrance to the 1889 World’s Fair. Eiffel had helped build the Statue of Liberty which went down well with Paris officials. However, the Eiffel Tower wasn’t initially loved in Paris either, locals protested against it and some demand it be pulled down. It was only supposed to stand for 20 years, over a century later it is now one of the most recognised landmarks in the world. And not in Barcelona.
    4. Barcelona Does Have Monuments
      It is home to nine UNESCO World Heritage Sites, seven of which were designed by Gaudi (often quoted as being Barcelona’s most famous son, he actually grew up 100km from the city). The nine are; La Sagrada Família, Palau de la Música Catalana, Park Güell, Casa Batlló, Hospital de Sant Pau, La Pedrera/Casa Milà, Palau Güell, The Crypt of Colonia Güell and Casa Vicens.
    5. Barcelona Created World Book Day
      Kind of. On April 23rd Catalonians celebrate St George’s Day, Diada de Sant Jordi. Traditionally couples, lovers and friends exchange books and roses. UNESCO liked the idea so much that in 1995 they decided to make it World Book Day. And that’s why your children need a Harry Potter costume every year!
    6. La Rambla Isn’t A Street
      It’s actually five streets combined; Rambla de Canaletes, Rambla dels Estudis, Rambla de Sant Josep (or de les Flors), Rambla dels Caputxins and Rambla de Santa Mònica. A favourite with tourists and locals alike, it makes up part of the beating heart of this fabulous city.
    7. Barcelona’s beaches WEREN’T Man-Made
      They are often attributed to the 1992 Olympic Games and while there is a grain of truth there, Barcelona did have beaches before the Olympics. Locals used to visit Sant Sebastia or Barceloneta beaches which ended in the current Port Olímpic. From that point on the beaches were overshadowed by factories or slum neighbourhoods. The city ‘gentrified’ the area, importing sand from Egypt and 12 different species of palm trees to create the stunning golden beaches in time for the games. Stretching over 4.5 km they include seven blue flag beaches and Barca was even voted “Best Beach City” by National Geographic.
    8. Football Before History?
      You might have your own sporting bias (for or against) but Barcelona is dominated by its football allegiance. Of the 55 museums in the city, including those dedicated to the work of Gaudi and Picasso, the most visited museum (welcoming over 1.5 million visitors a year!) is at FC Barcelona’s stadium, Camp Nou and dedicated to the history of the iconic club.
    9. It’s Very Green
      More than 10 percent of the city is covered by parks. Parc de Collserola is the largest metropolitan park in the world – 22 times larger than New York’s Central Park it covers an area of 84.65 km².

    Barcelona’s Must See Attractions

    La Rambla
    This wide tree-lined boulevard is at the beating heart of the city, lined with cafes, restaurants, buskers, artists. A busy and popular spot both day and night.

    Park Guell
    Park Güell is an enormous garden largely dedicated to the work of Catalan architect, Antoni Gaudí. Colourful, quirky, slightly mad? One of the city’s most famous sights.

    La Sagrada Familia
    Started in 1882, the vast cathedral is still a work in progress. Gaudí dedicated the last 30 years of his life to creating his masterpiece.

    Nou Camp
    Home to FC Barcelona, one of the world’s most successful and often most controversial football clubs. Also houses the city’s most visited museum.

    Museu Picasso de Barcelona
    With over 4,000 works by the famous 20th century Spanish artist Pablo Picasso. An absolute must for art fans. Not so good for horologists.

    Plaça del Rei
    A 14th century medieval square tucked in the Barri Gòtic of Barcelona, it’s a little oasis of history in this wonderful city.

    Magic Fountain of Montjuïc
    Located at the head of Avinguda Maria Cristina, the stunning fountains bursts into life with lights and music Tuesdays to Saturdays. Although it takes place during the day, the best time to view it is at night.

    La Barceloneta
    One of Barca’s glorious Blue Flag beaches, you can kick off your shows, sink your toes in the sand and enjoy a little bit of beach life.

    Mercat de la Boqueria
    Known as ‘La Boqueria’ this huge market is a must for anyone thinking of moving to Barcelona. You’ll find the very finest and freshest flavours of the region.

    Fundació Joan Miró
    Home to over 10,000 pieces of contemporary and modern art, it’s one of the city’s most captivating spaces and one of Europe’s finest collections.

    Barcelona Removals

    The Spanish city of Barcelona is the capital of Catalonia, a region in the North-eastern corner of the country, and is a renowned ‘smart city’, due to its many industries and outlets. Barcelona hosted the 1992 Summer Olympic games and is ranked as Europe’s fourth best city for business and economy growth. Barcelona supposedly got its name from the Carthaginian general Hamilcar Barca, who founded the city in 3rd century BC. In 2011, Barcelona was the 20th most visited city in the world, and 5th most visited city in Europe. The city is full of historical and cultural sites of interest, including 8 UNESCO World Heritage Sites, 519 hotels, 35 of which are 5 star, and multiple beaches. FC Barcelona (or Barça) is one of the best know sports teams in the world, being the second richest football club in existence. The team has won 72 national trophies, 17 continental prizes, five Champions League trophies and three FIFA Club World Cups. FC Barcelona also has professional teams in other sports, such as basketball, handball, roller hockey, ice hockey and futsal. Barcelona itself is served by El Prat Airport, the second largest airport in Spain, and the largest on the Mediterranean coast. The Port of Barcelona is over 2000 years old, and is of great commercial importance, connecting the city with many different locations around the globe, and providing access to many different industries and goods. The central area of the Port houses a multiplex cinema, Europe’s largest aquarium (containing 8,000 fish, 11 sharks and 6 million litres of sea water) and a shopping mall. The view of the Port from Montjuïc, a hill in the city, is popular with visitors, and there is the option to take a cable car from the ferry station to the castle in Montjuïc.

    Barcelona Removals

    Barcelona had no beaches until the 1992 Olympics, whereas nowadays there are 7 blue beaches along the city’s coastline. Gustave Eiffel originally planned for the Eiffel Tower to be in Barcelona, but Spain rejected the architect’s project, thinking it was too ‘radical’ and wouldn’t ‘fit with the city’s aesthetics’. Opened in 2007, Iccebarcelona is the world’s first ice bar, and is located on the beach. The city loves its food, and has more than 20 Michelin-starred restaurants, most of which specialise in Catalan cuisine. Barcelona’s 180km of cycle lanes make the city one of the most bike friendly cities in the world. You can navigate through Barcelona easily using these cycles lanes, which is heavily advised due to the number of people driving through the city centre. One of the most spectacular sites in Barcelona is the Palau de la Música Catalana, a beautifully designed musical hall created by architect Lluís Domènech i Montaner. One of the most popular dishes in the whole of Barcelona is the world-famous Esqueixada salad, made with raw cod, romesco sauce, tomatoes, onions and olives. You can’t be in Barcelona and not try the region’s take on Paella, a dish from the 19th century that consists of white rice, beans and seasoning. The dish is traditionally made with mussels, lobster, shrimp and other seafood, but other alternatives are available such as chicken and chorizo, chicken and rabbit or vegetable Paella. Barcelona is known for having lovely weather, and relaxing beaches within walking distance of the city centre. It is a great city for those looking to relocate from the UK, or for those wanting a holiday home in an idyllic location.

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