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The Temple of the Holy Family
It is easy to think of the Sagrada Familia as Gaudi’s Cathedral (it surely looks like one), but the Gaudi purist would correct you and state it is (like its name implies) a temple. Nevertheless, even Barcelonans refer to the temple as the “20th Century Cathedral”. Whatever you want to call it, the Sagrada Familia is a sight you won’t want to miss on your visit to Barcelona.
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Nativity Facade Details
Passion Facade Details
Views inside
Views high up, as I climb the tower.


Nativity facade - When Gaudi died in 1926, he had only completed one tower of this facade.

The Sagrada Familia was started as a Neo-Gothic church in 1882. A year after the start of the temple, with only the foundation in place, the project was turned over to Gaudi. Antoni Gaudi was a student of natural forms--geological, fauna (animal) and flora (plants)--and they inspired his architectural designs. Throwing out the Gothic church plan, he started to build his own unique vision of a temple.


The Passion Facade by Josep Maria Subirachs
After Gaudi’s death, others took up the task of completing the temple. In 1936 civil war in Spain stopped its construction and then a fire destroyed most of the Gaudi's plans for the temple. Constuction was not resumed until 1952.

The Passion Facade, with its own complement of four towers, was completed in 1976. The sculptures of Josep Subirachs were then added in 1987.


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Page last updated February 2006. Information on this page is from my October 2003 visit to Spain.