As last time we have briefly introduced the fun facts of Barcelona, this time let’s further explore the fascinating attractions of this beautiful city!

Can you imagine that a basilica is still unfinished after over a hundred year of construction? That is Sagrada Família located in Barcelona, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site! Designed by Catalan architect Antoni Gaudi, the works commenced in 1882 and has been ongoing ever since. The extremely long construction period is not only due to the magnitude of the project, but also because the construction funding only relies on private donations. Yet, Gaudí particularly remarked: "My client is not in a hurry."

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Gaudí devoted his remaining life to executing the project, but less than a quarter of the project was completed at the time of his death. After that, the project continued by several architects in different periods. Nowadays, the advanced technology has enabled faster and smoother progress of the construction, while the building is estimated to be finished by 2026—the centenary of Gaudí's death.

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The design of the basilica is inspired by nature, which involves shapes of animals and plants. Many scenes of Bible stories are also displayed throughout the building so that all the visitors can learn about those stories through the paintings. On top of this, there are three facades representing the life of Jesus, including Facade of Nativity in the east, Façade of Passion in the west and Façade of Glory in the south (not yet finished). As the sun moves across the sky, the sunlight further highlights the artistic features of each façade. The statues on the facades vividly show three crucial scenes of Jesus’ life.

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Although the basilica is unfinished, there is an international mass celebrated on every Sunday and Holy Day of Obligation since 2017, and the basilica is open to the public, where visitors can pray, worship and confess there. This historical landmark has drawn 2.5 million visitors annually, and we will soon be one of the visitors to be able to witness this magnificent building in person!

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