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Local Attractions in Barcelona, Spain

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Things to do in Barcelona

  • Barcelona Zoo Barcelona Zoo Barcelona, Spain
    In today's society, the main goal or objective of a zoo is the education of those coming here and the constant research and protection of the endangered species of the world. Barcelona is no different when it comes to that, with veterinary research studies, research in higher primates, adherence to the World Zoo Conservation Strategy, international and European programs that deal with the breeding and preservation of endangered species that are almost extinct and studies involving mammals, birds, reptiles and amphibians. The Barcelona zoo is also available for education programs that allow for the activities of schoolchildren, and out of school activities for children on the weekends and holiday recesses; plus two kinds of programs that are geared towards adults, personnel training courses that lead to future zoo keepers and educational workers; plus educational courses in zoology that can be studied through the school year or during the summer. They also offer marvelous excursions and field trips of special interest to all people. European programs for breeding include the gila monster, Mhorr's gazelle, the black vulture, Rothchild's giraffe, giant anteater, and the pigmy hippopotamus. Programs for recording captive animals include; the mangabeys, bontebok, siamang and greater kudu. Part of their work includes the preservation of endangered species and then bringing them back into nature and these include; the Eurasian otter, cattle egret, Majorcan midwife toad, little egret, Hermann's tortoise, night heron, fallow deer and white stork. The zoo was the home of the world's only albino lowland gorilla, Snowflake, and it is unfortunate for the world and all of its inhabitants that this aging primate passed on in 2003.

  • Monestir de Pedralbes
    The Barcelona Pedralbes Monastery's museum is one of the best examples of Catalan Gothic architecture in the world, and you can see the magnificent legacy that was left by the community of nuns from the order of Saint Clare and the information that has survived through the centuries about their lives. The monastery complex includes the church, and a fantastic three tier cloister that gives access to the various main rooms that surround a large garden area centered in the middle of the cloister. The main rooms include the refectory, the nun's day cells, the dormitory, the chapterhouse, the abbey and one of the nun's cells contains a spectacular mural painting done by Ferrer Bassa. the museum inside contains many marvelous works of art, furniture and religious objects that the nuns have collected over the centuries. The monastery also contains many collections, all pertaining to the solitary lives of the nuns that include items that were brought here when the nuns arrived to join the order or those that were collected or acquired by the nuns to decorate the monastery, and inside the church. These include paintings, goldware, textiles, papers, furniture, ceramics, silverware and parchments.

  • City History Museum
    The city of Barcelona, Spain has two different stories as to how it was started, and the first involves Hercules some 400 years before the city of Rome was built; and the other involves the Carthaginian Hamilcar Barca, the father of Hannibal, that named the area Barcino after his family, during the 3rd century BC. In 15 BC., Romans came here and redrew the village as a "castrum" or military camp that was centered around the mons taber or small hill that is near the contemporary city hall, Placa de Sant Jaume. While the Romans ruled, it became Faventia or fully, Colonia Faventia Julia Augusta Pia Barcino. Writers have mentioned it in their annals of small towns in the area, but whatever the truth is or was, it continued to grow in wealth and importance. It wasn't involved in the imperial matters or burdens like many growing metropolises, but did make their own coins, as can be attested by the few that have survived from the Galba period. Important Roman ruins were uncovered under the Placa del Rei, also by the entrance to the city museum and the typical Roman grid planning can be seen today in the historical center, Barri Gotic or Gothic quarter. Fragments of Roman walls were built into the cathedral, known as the basilica La Seu that was started in 343 AD. Barcelona was conquered by the Visigoths in the early 5th century, by the Moors in the 8th and reconquered by Charlemagne's son Louis in 801 AD., who then made it the seat of Carolingian Spanish Marches, which had become a buffer zone that was ruled by the Count of Barcelona.  The collection that is housed here includes over 35,200 relics.

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Local Restaurants in Barcelona
  • Ca L'Isidre
    Starters; gazpacho with lobster & sea fruits; grilled mix of mushrooms with white sausage; morels with duck liver cream; fried egg with small white fish; fettuccini wth porcini cream; grilled baby broad beans with baby squids; langostinos raviolis with lime and ginger vinaigrette; spanish ham jabugo; block of foie gras Ca L'Isidre; yellow fin tuna tartar with salmon eggs. Fishes and Seafood; grilled baby octopus; baked seabass; grilled king sea cucumber; fried codfish home style; grilled scampi from Sant Carles; grilled turbot with veggies, baked monkfish with truffle vinaigrette; filet of tuna with tomato coulis; grilled prawns from Palamos. Meats; beef entrecotte grilled; roast baby goat with small onions and white wine; lamb chops roasted with pineapple; lamb brains in black butter; filet with port sauce and truffle; pig trotters stuffed with porcinis, truffle and duck liver; duck liver with tangerine; veal tripes with chickpeas; steak tartar with whisky; filet of beef grilled.  curry tossed with veggies served on rice noodles.

  • Alkimia
    ple dishes; foie gras coca is balsamic glazed leeks, burnt sugar shell, chives; 36 hour galician oxtail is vegetable variations; pan seared scallops with sunchoke, onion escalivada glaze, jamon chips; Iberian suckling pig with apple in two textures, ratafia; mini canolons is roasted penedes chicken bechamel, truffle; bluefish is transparent gazpacho, crispy jamon; pork belly with green apple risotto, rosemary bubbles; wild Mediterranean mullet with fresh samfaina, lemon thyme; arroza banda is grilled baby squid, saffron aioli. Desserts; artisanal cheese with contrasts; watermelon with candied peel, pink peppercorn shaved ice; apricots from the maresme with pistachio cloud, chamomille ice cream; grand cru chocolate is olive oil ice cream, shattered bread and macadamias.

Grilled Baby Octopus Ca L'Isidre Barcelona, Spain

Roasted Lamb Chops Ca L'Isidre Barcelona, Spain


Pan Seared Scallops Alkimia Barcelona, Spain

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  • Picasso Museum Picasso Museum Barcelona, Spain
    The Museu Picasso, or Picasso Museum in English, is located in Barcelona, Spain and contains the most extensive collections of art by the 20th century Spanish artist, Pablo Picasso; and has become one of the most favorite and visited museums in the city. The entire museum is contained in 5 adjoining medieval palaces in the city's La Ribera, an older part of Barcelona. The first inklings of the museum were to come from Pablo's best friend, Jaume Sabartes, whom he given a large number of paintings, prints and drawings during their friendship. Sabartes thought about starting a museum in Malaga, where Picasso was born, but Pablo decided Barcelona would be the best place since he'd been in the city so much. Opening in 1963, the base collection was 574 marvelous works that Sabartes had received from Pablo, the pieces that the city held, and the many gifts from Picasso's friends and patrons. When Sabartes committed suicide in 1968, Picasso gave many of his own pieces, numbering in the realm of 1000, mostly of his earlier works, that his family had been safekeeping for him since he had traveled to France. These items included his school books, paintings from his Blue period and academic pieces. Presently there are over 3500 beautiful works of art from Picasso that make up this magnificent collection. Pablo came to Barcelona in 1894, with his father, an art instructor, came here to work, teaching art at the city school. Featured in this collection include two of his early important works, the First Communion and Science and Charity. The museum highlights the unique relationship that he had with the city, one that helped shape his young life, then his adolescence and stayed with him until his passing. The museum's collections include; Malaga, A Coruna, Barcelona, Malaga: summer of 1896 and 1897, Madrid, Horta de Sant Joan, Barcelona: 1899-1900, Paris:1900-1901, the blue period, the rose period, Barcelona: 1917, 1917-1957, Las Meninas, Picasso engraver and Picasso ceramist.

  • Museu Nacional d'Art de CatalunyaNational Art Museum of Catalonia Barcelona, Spain
    The Museu Nacional d'Art de Catalunya, or in English, the National Art Museum of Catalonia, is a museum of visual art located in Barcelona, Spain, held in the National Palace, that was constructed for the World's Fair of 1929. The palace sits on top of Montijuic hill, that was refurbished for the 1992 Summer Olympics, with the museum being started in 1990, just after the Catalonian Museum law combined the collections of the Catalonian Art Museum and the Modern Art Museum, then made it the national museum. The new museum has united the Gothic, Baroque, Renaissance and Romanesque art collections of the modern art museum with the 19th and 20th century artworks of the art museum; plus added the prints and drawings from the Gabinet de Bibuixos i Gravats, the coins and medals from the Gabinet Numismatic de Catalunya and the art history library holdings. The department of photography was started in 1996, just after the museum opened in 1995 featuring the Romanesque art gallery; with the Gothic art gallery opening in 1997 and the remainder opening in 2000. The official opening with the complete works in place and the palace entirely restored, was in 2004. The first Catalonian Art Museum opened in 1934 in the palace, but had to be shut down in the Spanish Civil War and reopened in 1940 and stayed open until 1942, with the influx of the second World War. The Modern Art Museum opened in 1945. Beginning in 2004, the museum has hosted the works of Thyssen-Bornesmisza that had been shown in the Monastery of Pedralbes, but because of the crowds of visitors was moved to assist the visitors. This collection highlights the period of paintings between the Gothic and rococo.

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  • Frederic Mares MuseumFrederic Mares Museum Barcelona, Spain
    Frederic Mares, who started this marvelous museum was a teacher, historian and sculptor, collecting one of the finest collections of sculpture from the 12th to the 19th centuries in Spain today. It is located in the Gothic area of the city, along a quiet street and has a refreshing inner courtyard that allows the visitors a moment or two for reflection and meditation. Mares metamorphed sculpture into something more than his artistic abilities, and all during his life, he would acquire a magnificent Hispanic sculpture collection where the polychromed religious carvings would take precedent. The collection of these is the most uniform gallery in the museum, with many of his personal sculptural oeuvre being highlighted in his former study/library. His collector's cabinet is a magnificent exhibit that contains tens of thousands of artworks that make up this vast collection documenting the customs and lifestyles of people from the 19th century and forward. The incredible collections include toys, keys, pharmacy bottles, pipes, fans, clocks, photographs, jewelry and reliquaries, displayed in such a special way that reflects Mares private and personal world. The museum was started in 1946, two years after Mares had given his first public presentation at the city's history archives, located in the Roman and Gothic districts of Barcelona. His initial collection included; medieval and Baroque sculpture, incunabula, clocks, reliquaries and many other beautiful objects of art that had been stored at his study on Mallorca Street.

  • Nou Camp
    The Camp Nou, or new field in English, has wrongly been called the Nou Camp in both Spanish and English, is the city's football (soccer) stadium in Barcelona, Spain, and has been the home of the Futbol Club Barcelona since being opened in 1957. The UEFA 5 star rated stadium has held many international matches at the senior level, and also the UEFA champion league finals, the last being held in 1999. It can hold 98,787 people, making it the biggest stadium in Europe and the tenth biggest in the entire world. Across from it is the Palace Blaugrana, where indoor sports venues are held, and next to that is the ice rink where ice-based sports are held. Behind the complex is the Mini Estadi, where the reserve team plays their games. The amounts of people have been different, when opened had over 106,000 people for its first game, and in 1982, had over 120,000 for the FIFA World Cup championships. In the latter part of the 1990s, standing was no longer allowed, so the capacity is just under 99,000. There is a memorabilia shop in the stadium, a chapel for the players and mini pitches for the training games. Inside is the most visited museum in the province of Catalonia, the El Museu del Barca, that is host to 1,200,000 visitors every year. It opened in 1984 and contains over 1400 items of Barca history, with over 400 being trophies. The stadium has been the venue for many musical concerts that include; Pink Floyd, Julio Iglesias, U2, Frank Sinatra, Michael Jackson, Jose Carreras, Madonna, The Three tenors, Carreras, Luciano Pavarotti and Placido Domingo, Bruce Springsteen, Amnesty International's Concert for Human Rights, Lluis Llach, and Montserrat Caballe. In 1982, Pope John Paul II celebrated a mass for over 121,000 people. The local team, known as Barca was started in 1899 by a group of Spanish, English and Swiss men, with the Spanish team being led by Joan Gamper. The team is only one of three that has not been banned from the league, and is the most successful club after Real Madrid, winning 19 league championships, 25 Spanish Cups, 8 Super Spanish Cups, 2 League Cups and 4 Eva Duarte Cups. The team is one of the most successful in Europe, winning 14 major trophies, that include 10 UEFA championships, 3 UEFA league championships, record 3 Inter-Cities championships, record 4 UEFA Cup Winners' Cups, 3 UEFA Super Cups and 1 FIFA Club World Cup. Last year, it was the first team in Spain to win the triple title of league champions, Copa del Ray champions and the UEFA champions. Over a quarter of the population in Spain support the club, and has about 44 million fans.

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May 09, 2011