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Saturday, 30 November 2013

Day 3 | Parc Guell

Day 3: 26 September, SPAIN

After visiting the Palau Guell, I wandered off in Place Catalunya wondering where to go next. I usually plan my trips meticulously, googling everything from the directions to the cheap places to eat way way in advance. But for this trip I don't recall if I threw caution to the wind or just had no time to plan it, but for once I was travelling without an itinerary.

It was kind of scary at first to think that I was OMG, wasting my precious time in a foreign land ambling about wondering where to go instead of being purposeful, but sometimes the way to get to know a city best is to get lost (NOT TOO LOST) and asking the locals. Either way, I had some places in mind and ALLLLLLLL THE GAUDI BUILDINGS were on my list.

With that I made my way to Parc Guell without stopping for lunch because I didn't want to waste any time and I was pumped with the adrenaline of being in Espanol~~
Luckily the metro system in Barcelona is rather foolproof and the people speak reasonably good English, and I was there in no time.

What they didn't tell me in the reviews of Parc Guell is that I would have to mount a hideously great vertical distance to get to the entrance. I mean, when they said 'situated on a hilltop" I guess I greatly underestimated the height of the hill. But you know, it wasn't a rude shock or anything when I began the trek upwards, because I had no idea what I was in for. It wasn't like a mountain where you're at the base looking up at the peak and going well that's a long way up. 

 I remember being here at this spot thinking that the top of the hill was in sight! And how kind of them to build escalators. Little did I know there was 257630476505025 other flights to scale, and some of them didn't even move on their own. So there I was thinking that the next flight was going to be the last... and the next... .and the next...... it wasn't until I reached the peak that I realised that I had been conned into going there.

Nah. Would've gone there anyway, but I like to know what I'm in for.

With no end in sight, I decided to stop for an ice cream on the way up.
My legs were absolutely killing me by this time. Luckily there was interesting artwork and graffiti to distract me from my aching quadriceps.


This was nearly the top. Note that there are no escalators in this picture.

The entrance of the place was flanked with many many many cacti and many of them had messages carved into them. I wonder what went through the mind of the first person that did it.

Photographic evidence of my perseverance being rewarded with a view.

Thereafter I had to walk down a long winding path before reaching the main compound, which was HUGE. I spent a long time ambling down the many different routes and visiting the different features of Parc Guell while surviving on no lunch and a bottle of water. It also did not help that the sun was UNMERCIFUL. On the bright side (hurr get it?) my photos were well lit which made for easy post-processing.

I was like, that's not a Gaudi building.

Arriving at Parc Guell proper.

Thought that these looked an awful lot like gingerbread houses. But look! Pretty!

Set my sights on reaching that little mound with the cross on it and spent the whole time wondering how the heck to get there.

Thought this photo was very funny and made this fellow tourist look like a gryphon or some mythical creature.

Rare shot without anyone in the photo :O

Finally found it after I think 2 hours of walking around

I will have you know that I was absolutely MORTIFIED when taking this picture. The wind was blustery and it felt like it was going to whisk me off and send me falling to my death or at least, some very serious injury. It took about half an hour for me to get to the top of that tiny mound and then slowly shuffling my feet around like a wuss before I could actually take any pictures on it.

Parc Guell is definitely a must-see for any visitor to Barcelona. It was a pleasant experience, empowering even walking around my own. Thank goodness for the tourist code where people take photos for each other without running away with anyone's camera. Of course there are bound to be hit and misses with the photos but oh hey mine turned out pretty well.. I hope theirs did too!

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