I went to Montjuic on the Monday of the long weekend. Monjuic is a large hill in Barcelona that is known for the various museums, castles, and views that are there. The most popular thing on Monjuic though is perhaps the Olympic facilities, that were used when Barcelona hosted the Olympics in 1992. Interestingly enough, a lot of people contribute Barcelona’s sudden popularity as a city due to its hosting of the 1992 games. The games gave Barcelona a lot of publicity, especially since Barcelona had one of best opening ceremonies (which featured a flaming arrow flying over the assembled crowd to ingite the Olympics torch.
Being an athlete, I thought it was especially inspiring to be in such a historic place. I visited the Track and Field stadium, and the smell of the turf itself was enough for me to feel like I was in a competition. I walked around more with my friends Alex and Aaron and we ended up at the Castle of Montjuic and the Placa de Sant Jordi. Here are some pics.
Later that Monday night, I went into town with my friend Shivam to watch some La Merce events. We went to Las Ramblas and saw the “Gigants,” which were pretty much larger- than-life size human replicas that were held up and spun around by one person inside. There were a ton of different themed Gigants and they were greeted down the famous Las Ramblas streets with their entourages, who were dressed similarly and even provided music while the Gigants danced. After watching the Gigants, I went a played soccer with some locals. It was a blast!
On Tuesday, I went to see the closing ceremony of La Merce. The first part of the closing ceremony was held at t St. Jaume square, where a light projection show was going on. The show was projected onto the Ajuntament building. After that was over, I headed to the firework show at Placa de Espana. The fireworks were shot off behind the Museu National d’Art Catalunya (MNAC). I must say that Disneyland or even America’s 4th of July firework shows have nothing on Spain’s La Merce firework show. This was hands down the best pyrotechnic show I have ever seen. Here are some pics from La Merce.
A lot of people I know went out of town during the weekend of La Merce and missed a lot of the fun and cultural activities that were going on. I’m very happy I stayed in the area. I was able to get a better taste of what Barcelona and some Spanish culture is all about.
Learning new things about Barcelona and loving it more each day.