Tuesday, January 12, 2010

The Best Park in Barcelona

OK, so you might be expecting me to churn out a post about the magnificent Park Güell? Or maybe how much I love La Cuitadella (you wouldn't be wrong)? And no, it's not about the botanical gardens up on Montjüic, either. This is a real gem inside Barcelona, and one which is not often visited. I'm talking about the Parc del Laberint, up in Horta.

aerial view of horta's Labyrinth - Barcelona Sights blog

The northern neighbourhood of Horta literally translates into "market garden" and indeed used to be farmers fields by all accounts. Well, despite being notoriously difficult to reach by public transport (Line 3, Mundet on the metro, guys, then a bit of a walk) it is my favourite park in the city. Maybe cos it's because I'm a sucker for Jim Henson movies or that I'm really just a big kid at heart, but give me a maze any time!

The park actually looks a bit like a forest from the outside and it's only from the inside can you see the amazing labryinth, which dates back to 1791!! Originally owned by the Desvalls Family, Italian architect Domenico Begutti was hired to design gardens around a cypress maze complete with stream and waterfall. There are even picnic tables outside for you to relax with a spot of lunch. There's a similar attempt at training cypress trees up on Montjuic in the Font del Gat Park, too, which I've pictured below.

shaded fountain in El Font del Gat Park - BarcelonaSights Blog
The park charges a measly 2,17€ to get in, which is well worth the price if you ask me, but is also free on Sundays and is open all year round (different opening times). So why on earth post about parks and gardens in January, I hear you ask? Well, given the pretty baltic temeperatures that have been sweeping around Spain and the rest of Europe, it seems that Barcelona has escaped with just a bit of a chill. No snow (boo!) and just a sharp drop in temeperatures, nothing out of the ordinary. However, imagine for a moment that Barcelona was covered in a blanket of snow, and you ended up getting lost in the maze.......sorry, any excuse to get this photo in the post!!! I've been waiting for ages to do that.

Frozen Jack - BarcelonaSights Blog

So what do you reckon? Have you been to the maze? Somewhere you'd like to visit, or do you think I'm completely wrong? Leave a comment guys and let me know. Oh, and if you're coming to Barcelona soon, check out these great Barcelona apartments for rent instead of a hotel!


Marta said...

Jack is scary! Laberint d'Horta is a beautiful park.

¡Hasta la vista!

David Brydon said...

Thanks Marta. Couldn't resist the photo of Jack...;o)

Good luck with your blogs (I checked your profile). Let me know if I can help with anything. Cheers,

Jennifer @ OrangePolkaDot said...

What a great find! I hadn't heard of it. Adding it on the to list of things to do! Since Sundays are free, does it get quite bus?

David Brydon said...

Hi Jennifer, thanks for the comment. It can get busy on Sundays, yes, depending on the weather. It's also a good spot for filming (like many places in Barcelona for cheap taxes, etc.) and the BBC have done a couple of shoots there (kids programme for cbeebies, for example). It depends a lot on the weather - but saying that, many people just stay on the picnic benches, and what is the maze itself, not everyone goes in!

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