Why Was Park Guell Regulated?
Park Güell in Barcelona is a major tourist attraction that stands as symbol of Catalan culture, and heritage. The UNESCO World Heritage Site draws close to 9 million visitors annually. To curb the problems that arise out of mass tourism, especially with respect to conservation of heritage, the Barcelona City Council implemented a new regulation policy.
Park Güell Regulation Policy
In October 2013, Barcelona City Council implemented a new regulation policy that would conserve the cultural zone.
The policy had to fulfill two goals:
- Protect, study and promote Gaudí's work, as established in UNESCO's requirements, and to offer a high-quality visiting experience.
- Allow the park has to remain an urban park, that would remain as a space for the community, and even a place for individual and collective memories.
As per the policy, access to the Monumental Zone, which represents 7.9 percent of the total area of the park, was restricted. Purchasing a ticket would allow visitors access to 12 hectares of the park. The rest of the park can be accessed for free.
Why Access Management?
Park Guell is divided into two large zones:
- Monumental zone that spreads over 12 hectares.
- Forest Area, located adjacent to the monumental zone and occupies 8 more hectares.
Visitors can access the whole of Park Güell, but the access regulation policy regulates the entrance to the monumental area, which was declared a World Heritage Site. This regulation was important as the huge influx of tourists visiting Park Guell was putting a strain on coexistence and also preventing the conservation of heritage.
Park Guell, which was designed originally as an exclusive development for 60 homes, was never meant to handle the strain of having 9 million visitors per year.
The regulation policy was intended to reduce overcrowding, and make room for the conservation of heritage, and make managing green areas easier.
The regulation limits the capacity to a maximum of 1400 visitors per hour and requires entry to access it.
How To Access The Regulated Monumental Zone?
Tickets for Access
- Residents in neighborhoods adjacent to Park Güell (La Salut, Vallcarca-Penitents, El Coll, Can Baró, El Baix Guinardó, and El Carmel) can access it with the card for the neighborhood.
- Those with the Gaudir Més registration or the physical card of the Library network of the Diputació de Barcelona can also enter for free.
- Children from schools located inside the park and in its immediate surroundings —Baldiri Reixac, Reina Elisenda, Cor de Maria, Jesuïtes de Gràcia, Petit Virolai, Turó del Cargol and Escola Montseny— are entitled to free access.
- Tourists need to purchase tickets.
- Tourists can only visit the Monumental Zone between 9.30 AM to 5.30 AM.
- During mornings, from 7 AM to 9:30 AM, and evenings, from 6 PM to 10 PM, access is reserved for the public. Tourist visits are not allowed during these hours.
- Citizens can also visit between 9.30 AM and 5.30 PM. To regulate this, there are a total of 9 entries: four meant only for neighbors and citizens, four for visitors and citizens, and one dedicated exit point located at Carrer Olot.
Benefits of the Park Guell Regulation Policy
The money raised by this restricted access is reinvested in the park, in the form of various projects that would help improve and renovate green areas, viewpoints, paths and play areas. Thus the regulated zone helps directly towards the conservation and protection of unique artistic and cultural heritage.
Visitors are now able to explore the historic area without having to deal with throngs of people. One can choose to be accompanied by a guide or use the app that serves as audio guide for a truly enriching experience.
The local residents can access the park for free everyday, allowing it to exist as a space where people can relax and enjoy nature.
Rules for Visiting Regulated Zone
- It would be best to purchase tickets online. You can also purchase tickets from the venue, but there is a chance you might not get one for immediate visit. Ever 30 minutes only 700 people is currently allowed to enter, keeping with the Covid-19 guidelines.
- Arrive on time and the tickets entitle visitors to enter Park Güell on the date and within the time allotted on the ticket.
- Tickets allow entry into the Park for 30 minutes after the time-slot reserved.
- Those with Gaudir Més membership must have a ticket to enter the site. They can go directly to any Park Güell entrance, where their membership will be verified.
- Local residents and/or those who have an accreditation card will have to show it at the entrance check point and provide documentation proving ownership of the document.
- Once tickets have been purchased, they cannot be modified, cancelled or refunded.
- Once you enter Park Guell, you will not be able to leave and then re-enter.
- Tourists can only visit Park Guell during the public opening hours.
- Spaces and facilities such as the MUHBA Casa del Guarda museum space have a limited capacity. While a ticket allows you entry, it does not guarantee it.
- Minors under the age of 14 have to be accompanied by an adult.
- You can have picnics in the zones designated within Park Guell. Use the wastepaper baskets in order to help keep the Park clean.
- Climbing the perimetral walls of the Park or crossing the safety barriers is strictly prohibited.
- Climbing on or leaning against the heritage features of the Park is not allowed.
- Visitors are not allowed to take photographs for professional or commercial purposes.
- Undressing, removing shoes or lying down on the benches are not allowed in the restricted area.
- Riding bicycles and roller skating are not allowed in the park.
- No-smoking zones are clearly marked and sign posted. Respect them.
- Use of megaphones, speakers or any voice-amplification devices is not allowed inside the premises.