La Sagrada Familia, Barcelona

by Andrada Costoiu

I visited Spain and Barcelona in March. The weather was unusually sunny; it was a great time to gallivant around the city. La Sagrada Familia was one of the first things I visited, and thanks to my friend Alice, I had one of the most wonderful time ever.

La Sagrada Familia is a gigantic Roman Catholic Church, one that took hundreds of years to be built to what it is today, and it’s still not ready! The beginning of the construction dates back to 1882 and they estimate that it will be done in 2026.  When it will be ready it will have taken longer to build than the Egyptian Pyramids and only 50 years less than the Great Wall of China!

I took a picture of the makete. If you look at it, the parts in gray are still to be built. It doesn’t matter though because even as it stands today, this is a beautiful piece of architecture.

Sagrada is Antoni Gaudi’s masterpiece, a genius that dedicated his life to his profession. He remained single his entire life after his one love, Josefa, did not reciprocate his feelings.

La Sagrada looks almost like a giant piece of jewelry! There is so much work and detail in every part of the building. There are three facades, each of them built in different time periods and you can that tell by their color and their style.  Only one, the Nativity Façade (constructed between 1894 and 1930) was completed by Gaudi himself.  I loved it the most! This façade has a lot of life, and a lot of artists and sculptors collaborated with Gaudi to decorate it. If you go visit, take time to view it and understand it.

The other two facades, the Passion Façade and the Glory Façade are also beautiful. The Passion Façade is more austere and simple. The Glory Façade is not ready yet but I have read that it will have some constructions shaped as clouds that will rise through the four bell towers (the towers symbolize Saint Andrew, Saint Peter, Saint Paul and Saint James). These clouds will surround an image of God and the façade would to be seen from the sea. Imagine that!

When ready, the highest tower of La Sagrada will be 170 meters tall! What is interesting is that Gaudí believed that nothing man-made should ever be higher than what God has created. So 170 meters is only one meter less than Montjuic, the mountain in Barcelona, which is the highest point in the city!

The interior of La Sagrada is based on nature, because Gaudi wanted to build things that resembled nature. It is a pure example of biomimetic architecture, although this is a contemporary philosophy of architecture and Gaudi is a precursor. If you don’t know, biometric architecture uses nature inspired designs to create an organic architectural flow.

When inside, I just wanted to stay there for a while! I didn’t know where to look first and what to admire. The columns resembled threes, with branches and leaves. The light was coming from different windows and it was creating this spectacle of colors. The light reflections on different parts of the church gave the columns different colors.

Gaudi is buried in La Sagrada. I stopped by his grave and I did say a silent thank you to him, and reflected on his work and his life. His grave is located in the underground level. He was killed by a tram…… 

If you go to visit this beautiful place you’ll also help with its building. It will still take a lot of money to complete it, so every penny helps!


© Andrada Costoiu and, 2019 . Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Andrada Costoiu and, 2019 with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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