Parc Güell seems to be slightly overlooked even as a tourist destination here in Barcelona, likely due to it’s distant standing up in the beautiful Carmel Hills, overlooking the cultural and artistic hub of a city. However, it is a true gem and not as distant as it may appear. Aside from the tourist attractions of Antoni Gaudí’s bench and house, Parc Güell has a whole lot to offer and can be visited and appreciated in many different lights.
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Peace, music and nature
If you are looking for some quiet time away from busy city life, a peaceful, green space is exactly what you need. Entering Parc Güell is guaranteed to calm and soothe the soul. The park offers a chance to sit, chill out, and admire the astonishing views of the warm and chaotic city below. You can observe all of Barcelona’s architectural beauty in the surroundings of the lush gardens while noticing wildlife such as lizards and hearing unusual bird songs from the best, most quiet and calming seats in town. You may even come across a flock of escaped green parquets from Parc de la Ciutadella’s zoo.
Hang drum players often frequent the park, pouring dulcet raindrop-like tones through the highest points. Alternatively, taking a visit to the cross within Parc Güell you will come across an old blues guitarist who can always be spotted at the bench beneath, surrounded by his kittens and putting on a humble and soulful set for those brave enough to scale the cross and admire the 360-degree view of Barcelona. Passing through a gate hidden at the back end of the park and into a pine-like forest, you can walk further up a dirt track to find the most secluded and awe-inspiring view of them all.
Socialising and studying
Another way in which to enjoy the park would be to take a picnic to one of the many picnic benches hidden high amongst the trees and shrubbery and enjoy a couple of beers with friends and family as the sun rises above and over the mountains. Despite the tourist draw of Gaudi’s architecture, the park is never busy or rowdy, which makes it a great place to bring a laptop to finish some work, read a book, or write creatively.
Parc Güell by night
One final way in which to enjoy Güell would be to visit at night time, when the gardens take on a completely different atmosphere. The park has few lights and the large tropical plantation and reinforced gates turn into something out of Jurassic Park. You can also roam around the bench and pillars for free and with likely nobody else around. It can be great fun, giving you the chance to see the city views at night time, with twinkling lights and a sense of calm, rare aloneness.
How to get there
If you are wondering how to reach this green haven filled with beautiful and natural-looking arches and tropical structures, it is actually quite simple. If you wish to pass through areas of the city you would not usually get the opportunity to see, you can walk all the way from the beach in Barceloneta and it will take no longer than three hours.
Alternatively, walking up from Alfons X metro (yellow line) station takes little over 20 minutes with great views of the Balearic Sea, with the walk from ShBarcelona taking just half an hour longer.
For those who do not care for the walk, there is also the V17 bus which will take you all the way to the park’s entrance for.
In which light do you plan to enjoy the park?