Barcelona is not just the city of Gaudí, Ramblas and the historic centre: it is also a progressive city, and its dedication to modernization can be seen in its architecture. Today, I decided to visit the area developed in the early 21st century: Parc Diagonal Mar. Coming up the subway station, I had the impression I was in another city, as it looked so different from where I had disappeared underground. Not only were my surroundings newly developed architecture, they were also largely empty.
Parc Diagonal Mar was designed for the Universal Forum of Cultures in 2004, much like other major events sent impulses to modernize Barcelona: the 1992 Olympics and the Universal Expositions in 1888 and 1929. More than a park, the entire waterfront area was changed completely, including residential areas, hotels, the largest convention centre of Southern Europe, a shopping complex, and a yacht harbour. I walked past one of the most remarkable buildings of the area: a triangular, purple building with uniquely shaped reflecting windows covering the building vertically. Perhaps the residents were at work, or in: I did not see any.
I did meet a few people going for a stroll though, or riding their bikes. The new harbour with luxury boats, Port de Sant Adrià, was very quiet, perhaps also because it was early December. A high bridge allows pedestrians to make a tour around the entire harbour, offering nice views on the harbour itself and the surrounding area. The bridge also led me to the enormous solar panels on the other side, acting like a high, slanted roof. From here, I walked back to the central area of the Parc Diagonal Mar, finding things like a sun clock on the ground, many lanterns defining the skyline of the park, an enormous roof covering an empty space, a beautiful, tilted pedestrian bridge, and a very high war monument connecting this area of modernity to the past. From here, I had a very pleasant walk back to the city on the beaches, enjoying the surprisingly warm December sun.
Personal travel impressions both in words and images from Parc Diagonal Mar (). Clicking on the pictures enlarges them and enables you to send the picture as a free e-card or download it for personal use, for instance, on your weblog. Or click on the map above to visit more places close to Parc Diagonal Mar.
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