Antoni Gaudí isn’t just a part of Barcelona; he defines it. Often hailed as a genius of Catalan modernism, his unique interpretation of the Art Nouveau movement shaped the unmistakable face of Barcelona today. With seven of Gaudí’s works designated as UNESCO World Heritage sites and nearly a dozen more scattered throughout the province, the marks of this renowned Spanish Catalan architect are stamped all over the city. From commissioned residences of some of the city’s most influential citizens to his magnum opus dominating the skyline with its distinct turreted spires, read on to discover our must-visit Gaudí wonders perfect for first-timers and Barcelona buffs alike.



Commissioned as a renovation in 1904, Casa Batlló is Catalan modernism plucked straight from a fever dream. Like Casa Milá, Casa Batlló was designed with a space from which to admire the artist’s most important work—the Sagrada Família—which some say represents the forest. Casa Batlló, on the other hand, represents the ocean. Its exterior—a magically nautical blend of undulating walls, coral-shaped balconies and a scaly gradient of jewel-toned tiles—is emblematic of Gaudí’s method of drawing inspiration from the natural world and transforming it into a design vibrating with otherworldly allure. Return visitors will revel in the museum’s new 10D Experience, an immersive glimpse inside the mind of a genius, peppered with sensory experiences and psychedelic installations that carry the building’s historic past into the modern era.



Perhaps one of the most photographed places in Barcelona, Parc Güell offers spectacular views from its prime location perched atop El Carmel hill, featuring an upper terrace that overlooks the city and the deep blue ocean horizon beyond. The park has both free and paid areas, showcasing nearly two miles of meandering pathways, botanical gardens and the house-turned-museum in which the architect himself lived. Commissioned by the wealthy industrialist Eusebi Güell, the park was originally intended to be a gathering place for Barcelona’s aristocracy. Today, it serves as a public staple displaying the full range of Gaudí’s Modernisme, the twists and curves of its unconventional shapes all blanketed in the artist’s signature trencadís method of colorful tile mosaic.


Sowing the seeds for his later work, Casa Vicens was Gaudí’s first significant work, a summer garden home commissioned by the stockbroker Manel Vicens i Montaner. Completed in 1885, the fourstory Casa Vicens is one of the earliest examples of Art Nouveau architecture—a maximalist riot of Moorish-inspired colors, shapes and patterns. Considered a significant historical prelude to Catalan modernism, the house breaks away from tradition with unique papier-mâché interiors, horse-shoe archways and Mudejar-style brickwork, making it noticeably different from many of Gaudí’s later creations.



In the early 1900s, Passeig de Gràcia was the booming boulevard where the wealthiest members of the bourgeoisie built their homes, battling to eclipse their predecessors with bigger and more elaborate designs. It was here that Gaudí built his last civil work — Casa Milá, also known as La Pedrera, or “stone quarry.” A commission for the wealthy Milá family in 1906, its construction was fraught with public controversy and legal setbacks. Although mocked for its modern style, Gaudí’s
design was truly ahead of its time, designed without a single load-bearing wall and boasting the street’s first underground parking garage for carriages. The construction halted in 1912 amidst disagreements over the artist’s final adornment: a large sculpture of the Virgin Mary to be installed atop the roof. Even without it, Casa Milá is as decorative as it is innovative, a mustsee when visiting Barcelona.
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Piercing Barcelona’s skyline, the awe-inspiring La Sagrada Família is Gaudí’s final masterpiece in the making. Upon completion, the cathedral’s complex exterior will feature 18 massive towers and a collection of intricate Gothic and Byzantine-inspired facades depicting the tales and parables of the Bible. Inside, towering interior columns reminiscent of a redwood forest draw the eyes upward to the kaleidoscopic vaulted ceiling. Throughout the day, a constantly shifting play of colors dances across the floor as sunlight pours into the cavernous halls, filtered through vibrant stained-glass windows.

As the longest-running architectural project in modern history, the project has also become a transient symbol of the passing of time itself, its expected completion date in 2026 marking over 130 years of painstaking construction. Like many of Gaudí’s works, La Sagrada Família is not immune to controversy. Without its creator alive to guide his grand vision, critics argue that some of the building materials being used today are not what Gaudí would have chosen. And yet, nearly a century after
his death, the construction continues. Surrounded in cranes and scaffolding, today’s La Sagrada Família is different from tomorrow’s, each day revealing slight changes as it inches toward its final form: the tallest church in the world,