I went to the Sagrada Familia five years ago when I was travelling round Europe,
but actually just stood outside admiring the view above as I didn’t have the money for the entrance fee.

Half a decade on and all grown up I managed to fork out the €20 and fulfil my 5-year dream
of seeing inside the Sagrada Familia, but was it worth it?

Here are 23 reasons why it absolutely, definitely was…

1. The nave is designed to look like a forest

Inside the Sagrada Familia

2. The stained glass windows are stunning

Looking up at the Sagrada Famlila

3. One side is red and orange: fire and earth

Inside the Sagrada Familia

4. And the other blue and green: water and air

Inside the Sagrada Familia

5. The basilica is for everyone, of every language

Inside the Sagrada Familia

6. There are plenty of places to sit to admire the view
Inside the Sagrada Familia

7. Everything inside the Sagrada Familia is there for a reason – the symbolism is endless

Inside the Sagrada Familia8. The Museum houses scaled designs to show how they designed it – you can visit the workshop to see the workers making the intricate details right in front of you
Inside the Sagrada Familia

9. Each side, or facade, is designed to represent a different stage of Jesus’ life: birth, life, death and the resurrection

(pictured: the death, the Nativity facade)

Outside the Sagrada Familia

10. Gaudi designed it so the sun would light each side in order, inside to tell the tale

Sagrada Familia

11. They have major religious services here (Christmas / Easter) but not Sundays, yet

Inside the Sagrada Familia

12. This is because it’s not finished yet, they need all the tourist money to do the job
Inside the Sagrada Familia

13. Only 8 of the 18 planned towers are built so far

Exploring inside the Sagrada Familia 14. Work will be finished in 2028, 100 years since Gaudi’s death
Is it worth it inside the Sagrada Familia

15. The crown of thorns above the altar is a highlight

Inside the Sagrada Familia

16. Gaudi is now buried in a crypt under the Sagrada Familia – he was killed by a tram aged 72

Inside the Sagrada Familia

17. In designing the Sagrada Familia Gaudi looked to the natural world and to the stars to see how they naturally supported weight and shapes. This is how he planned the architecture of the arches and towers, and then placed a mirror at the top to see it as we do now

Sagrada Familia Gaudi

18. You can visit the towers by elevator and see out over Barcelona and down onto the Sagrada Familia too

View from inside the Sagrada Familia

19. When completed the Sagrada Familia will be 170 meters (560 ft) which is 1m less than Montjuic Hill, Barcelona’s highest point

Inside the Sagrada Familia

20. Outside, these ‘fruits’ that top the smaller towers represent the seasonality in Barcelona

The towers of the Sagrada Familia

21. Loved the view down the lift shaft

Inside the Sagrada Familia

22. The Sagrada Familia is a UNESCO World Heritage Site

Inside the Sagrada Familia

23. It’s one of the most incredible buildings I’ve ever been in or seen

Outside the Sagrada Familia

Gaudi is a legend in Barcelona and designed many of the most famous buildings. Work started in 1882 when Gaudi took over from Francisco Del Vilar, who got as far as building the crypt. He worked on the Sagrada Familia for 43 years, often sleeping on site.

It’s sad that after all that dedication and passion Gaudi will never get to see the Sagrada Familia as magnificent as it is today.

But you can!

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