All You Need to Know About Park Guell Barcelona
Park Güell is spread over a massive 19 hectares with 1.7 hectares of the core area of the park demarcated as a restricted area. While this restricted area was once called Monumental Zone, the park currently has no such demarcation and your Park Guell tickets give you access to the entire park area.
Park Guell Barcelona was established in 1914 and was designed by renowned architect Antoni Gaudi. A visit to the park gives us insight into the brilliance of Gaudi, and is a great way to discover his eclectic and unique style. The venue is steeped in history, and today, it is one of the most famous landmarks in the city, seeing over 9 million visitors annually.
Park Guell Entrances
Park Guell has three entrances:
- Main Entrance: This is located right next to the Porter's Lodge Pavilion.
- Carretera del Carmel: This is located on the west of the park.
- Av. del Santuari de St. Josep de la Muntanya: This is on the eastern side and can be accessed via elevators.
Plan Your Visit
Park Guell Barcelona Timings
- Park Guell is open daily from 9:30 AM to 6:00 PM.
- Bus: Lines 24 and 92 to Carretera del Carmel-Park Güell, which is outside the main entrance.
- Metro: Green line - L3 to Lesseps or Vallcarca, which are close to Av. del Santuari de St. Josep de la Muntanya.
Park Guell History
Park Guell was originally supposed to be a housing complex for the aristocratic families of Barcelona. The estate had great views overlooking the city, and was commissioned by Count Eusebi Güell. The legendary architect Antoni Gaudí was to design it, and moved into one of the two houses that were constructed.
However, due to various reasons, the project didn't work out, and the estate was converted into a private garden. After Count Güell passed in 1918, the garden was offered to the City Council by his descendants and opened as a public park in 1926.Learn more about Park Guell history
Park Guell Architecture
- Park Guell was designed by Antoni Gaudi, who created it in his signature Modernisme style. Visitors will also get to see the use of Trencadís, which is a mosaic created by broken ceramic pieces, throughout the park.
- Gaudi firmly believed that there were no straight lines or sharp corners in nature, and so, the entire park features curved lines and fluid designs.
- Guests will find various animals throughout the park, designed in Trencadís mosaic.
- The palm-leaf-shaped iron gates were actually brought in from Casa Vicens to replace the wooden gates after Antoni Gaudi passed away.
Park Guell Barcelona: Highlights
Pathways And Viaducts
Gaudi designed Park Güell with the idea of merging it with the natural surroundings and hilly topography. To achieve this, he laid down an intricate network of paths, bridges, and viaducts throughout the property. The three viaducts that glide up the mountain in succession are called Pont de Baix, the Pont del Mig, and the Pont de Dalt. These examples of ingenious structural engineering are supported by columns and vaults made of sketchy stones that were found on site.
In addition to these major pathways, Gaudi also built a web of small pathways and shortcuts that were meant for people on foot. Walk on one of these to experience the charm of this 19th Century park.
Porter's Lodge Pavilion
The main entrance to Park Güell has an impressive facade and presents a stunning view of the work of art inside. The ceramic tiled stone wall and palm leaf-shaped iron gates are just a trailer of the nature-inspired architectural marvels, one would witness ahead. There are two pavilions with beautiful tile shards mosaic roofs on either side of the gate. The one on the left was used as a waiting room with a telephone booth and the other as a residence and hence the name - Porter’s Lodge.
Three Cross Hill
The Three Cross Hill is the highest viewpoint in Park Guell and offers beautiful views of the city of Barcelona. Getting to the top will require some effort, as there is steep stairway to climb, but the breathtaking views at the top of the hill make the journey well worth the effort.
Gaudi House Museum
One of the original homes in the park, Gaudi House Museum is now a collection of the fabled architect's life and work. To enter the museum, you'll need to buy a separate ticket from the Park Guell website since the regular tour does not cover the museum.
The Dragon Stairway
An artistic twin flight of steps rises up from the entrance to the Hypostyle Room. Divided into three sections, the stairway has a fountain running along its edge and each landing on the way up is marked by a distinct element. The first one has goblin sculptures, further up is the emblem of Catalonia and a tile-shard mosaic-covered salamander on the third landing.
The Hypostyle Room
The Dragon Stairway culminates into an enormous space called the Hypostyle room. The entire space is supported by 86 striped columns, with the outermost ones sloping in an undulating form contrary to the rules of classical composition. This area was intended to be the marketplace for the estate. The ceiling of the Hypostyle room consists of small domes made up of traditional clay bricks that are covered with beautiful patterns of tile-shard mosaics.
At the heart of Park Güell lies the huge open air space originally called the Greek Theatre and now called Plaça de la Natura (Nature Square). Sitting over Hypostyle columns, projecting out of the mountain behind and lined with tile shard mosaic patterned benches, this vast platform was planned to stage large open-air shows.
When development for the residential plots stalled, the space demarcated for it was turned into a municipal plant nursery. With trees donated from Austria, this part of the park has a very distinguished look. The Austria gardens have a beautiful view and host two prominent houses, one of which was acquired by Gaudi’s family which has now been converted into Gaudí House museum.
Park Guell Barcelona Facts
- The Austria Gardens were originally meant to be housing plots as well, but after the plan was scrapped it became a nursery. The garden gets its name from trees that were donated from Austria.
- The design of the park was inspired by nature. Hence, there are no straight lines as Gaudi believed they didn’t occur naturally.
- Gaudi House in Park Guell is actually not designed by Gaudi, but his assistant Francesc Berenguer i Mestres.
- Thanks to its location, visitors can get the best views of Barcelona from the terrace of Park Guell.
- It took Gaudi over a decade to build the park — he started the project in 1900, and stopped in 1914, after the death of Count Guell.
- Park Guell was deemed a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1984.
- The vast Hypostyle Room was originally designed as a marketplace for the residents who would purchase houses in the estate.
- Only two houses were sold in Park Guell — the first was bought by Gaudi himself and the second by Martin Trias y Domenech.
Park Guell Barcelona: FAQs
Yes, it is perfectly safe to visit Park Guell Barcelona, as a number of health measures are in place to ensure safety of visitors.
Park Guell is a must-visit in Barcelona thanks to its rich history and the mastermind behind its design, the eminent architect Antoni Gaudi.
Park Guell tickets start at €10 for adults, while guided tours start at €27.
Park Guell Barcelona has a number of highlights such as The Dragon Stairway, The Serpentine Bench, Austria Gardens, El Drac, and Laundry Room Portico, among others.
Park Guell has three entrances — the main entrance, Carretera del Carmel, and Av. del Santuari de St. Josep de la Muntanya.