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Catalan Traditions


Barcelona is waiting for you!!!

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While Covid-19 virus has put a stop to our normal lives, these are some places that I want to show you. They–and others–are part of our culture, traditions and monuments to be visited. We hope that you’ll be able to see them in person pretty soon!


When you have chosen to visit Barcelona and Catalonia a question arises: and what I am going to see? in this video you have my choice:

Sharing the streets, usually plenty of life, you will see sculptures that links with the recent story of the city; “the Cat” by Fernando Botero; Sant George, patron Saint of Catalonia, killing the dragon; the Goddess by Josep Clarà heats Catalonia Square, the center of Barcelona, and beginning of the elegant boulevard Passeig de Gràcia; by the Olympic games, Roy Lichtensteinpresented us “the face of Barcelona” in his Pop-Art style.

Famous painters have left their print in Catalonia: Salvador Dalí was born and died in Figueres; Joan Miro was born in Barcelona and although Pablo Picasso was born in Malaga (south of Spain), he said that everything started in Barcelona!!!

Catalonia is a welcoming land, chosen by many visitators as its homeland, they have become one of us, they have brought their culture too; as the Flamenco dance, but the Sardana is the original dance of Catalonia. We say that la Sardana is the most beautiful dance of all dances that are done and undone. Maybe it is the unique one that is done and undone; anyway, it is danced in a circle and everyone is accepted.

Of course, in Barcelona you won’t miss the masterpieces of Gaudí: Sagrada Familia, Batlló House or Park Güell. But in our art museums you will admire from the Romanesque frescos that from the Pyrenees mountains were recovered 100 years ago to the modern art such as Ramon Casas.

Not so far from Barcelona, our lady, the Black Madonna of Montserrat watch the mountain; she is the patroness Saint of Catalonia and our devotion for her goes back to 1000 years ago, even Christopher Columbus visited her before his second trip. Caravaggio wasn’t in Montserrat, for sure, but in its museum a Saint Jerome by Caravaggio is exhibit.

We will get our Art and City back and when that time comes, I will be here waiting for you.

What is celebrated in Catalonia on September 11th?

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In the Succetion Spanish War the Aragon Crown bet on Charles of Austria in order to recover the politic power Aragon had had before joining Castilla. On the other hand the Bourbon saw the opportunity to enlarge his hegemony in Europe if they would occupy the Spanish Throne. This would affect the European stability and different countries took part in the Thirty years’ War. In the end England abandoned the conflict, leaving the Aragon Crown alone in front of the franc-Castilian army.

The opposition was hard and in 1713 the franc-Castilian army sieged of Barcelona city. The city with an army of 5000 soldiers didn’t surround, it maintained the siege 13 months, until on September 11 of 1714 when the franc-Castilian army crossed the city walls with 40000 soldiers. At that point the city decided to offer resistance street by street. Many of them died. And even the enemy chronicle speaks about the braveness of the citizens. Finally Barcelona felt and one year later Mallorca and Menorca did.

The punishment was great and the Institutions of the Crown, the Nation, the Laws, the Catalan language… were abolished or forbidden by the Decree of Nueva Planta. All power would be centralised from Madrid.

At beginning of the XX century, Catalonia adopted this September 11 as its National Day. It’s celebrated the braveness thought which they fought and Institutions are recalled which Catalonia and the Aragon Crown had possessed until then.

Fake Tour Guides

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Yesterday I was in front of the Cathedral of Barcelona with a group. When I finished my explanation two girls approached me and asked me about the “Castellers” (a human tower which is a Catalan tradition). They had gone there because the previous day a supposed tour guide told them that it was possible to see the Castellers every Sunday at 7 pm in front of the Cathedral. I told them that it is possible to see the “Sardana on Sunday morning but not the Castellers unless it were an special festivity.

I recommended them to choose the next time an official tour guide with the accreditation of the Generalitat (the local government). I have recently seen that there are foreign people who come here to spend some time or their holidays and they decide to work in the meantime as tour guides. They offer their services through the Internet. Some companies contract their services because they are much cheaper than the official guides.

It’s a shame that after deciding to contract a guided tour you only receive a lot of misinformation. In order to be an official tour guide we have to pass a hard exam to prove that we have the right knowledge and the qualification to transmit it.

If you spend a lot of money to travel, please don’t waste it with illegal professionals.

Here you have a picture of the official accreditation and here you can check the list of the official tour guides of Catalonia.

Enjoy your holidays!!!