Sights to See in Barcelona
Barcelona is a city by the sea...the Mediterranean Sea to be exact.
Like most coastal towns the history of Barcelona, and its distinct ambiance, are very strongly
affected by that fact. For centuries the harbor was the scene of
seafarers and townspeople bustling about on the traditional business
that takes place at any port.
But, as happens with historic sites, Port Vell fell into disuse over
the generations. Its warehouses fell empty, its railroads were less traveled, its industrial buildings
grew quiet. Fortunately, like many other coastal towns such as San
Francisco and Boston, Barcelona saw, and seized, an opportunity to revitalize its seaside area.
In an ambitious urban renewal effort lasting years, the wharf became a yacht basin, the buildings were transformed into shops, an IMAX and an aquarium. Its rail lines became walkways for the thousands that now
throng the area every year. An existing coastal road was even moved underground to enable visitors to walk safely from one exciting offering to another.
is one major attraction to be found at Port Vell.
This new wooden pedestrian bridge is more than a simple walkway over space and water. It is itself
a thing of beauty. It is an artistic and practical connection between the
Rambla de Mar and many of the shops,
theaters and restaurants that dot the area. Behind it lies the IMAX and the outstanding aquarium.
As in many in larger cities around the world, the IMAX offers an enormous 3-D screen.
But there is also a flat screen IMAX and an Omnimax.
Here, visitors can take advantage of any of the three different shows that play
continuously. There are discount tickets available that will get you
into all three events.
The Aquarium de Barcelona
is by far the largest attraction of the area and its popularity
is well deserved. With 8,000 aquatic animals, including a dozen sharks,
this 1.5 million gallon facility will delight animal lovers of all
ages. One section offers an 80m (262 ft) long observation tunnel. Along
the glass walls you can see hundreds of native deep sea species, as
well as the sharks.
South of the Maremagnum lies the Aduana
building. The structure was erected in 1902 and served as the customs house. It now provides an
outstanding sight for visitors who want to get a feeling for turn of
the 20th century architecture in Barcelona. Nearby, stretched along the
pier, is Barcelona's World Trade Center.
Even the sea sights will be of interest to many visitors.
The many upscale yachts and sailing ships are a Barcelona sight to see. An observer can
often see them moving gracefully around the sea just off shore. If you take a
boat tour, you can enjoy a view of Barcelona available nowhere else in
the city. The peaceful cruise provides a nice contrast to the bustling waterfront.
After viewing the port, take a stroll up the road a short way and spend some time viewing
theMonument a Colon (Columbus Monument). The explorer is memorialized
on top of a 60m (197 ft) column in the form of a statue that points toward the sea.
The monument, which was erected in 1888, stands at the site where the
great man landed in 1493 after his discovery of the direct sea route to America.
It is located in the center of the Placa
del Portal de la Pau (Square of the Gate of Peace).
You can enjoy an afternoon of sunbathing and dining or catch a show. Go
cycling or rollerblading then have a cool drink at one of the many bars. Port
Vell is easy to find. Just walk east until you hit a very large expanse
of blue-green water topped by an azure sky, or take the Metro to Drassanes.
More Sights to See in Barcelona