Friday, October 22, 2010

Labyrinth Park of Horta

One of the less famous attractions in the city is the Parc del Laberint d'Horta. I have wanted to see this place since over a year ago when David and I watched The Perfume and he pointed out the many surreal and breathtaking locations that were shot in Barcelona. Naturally, the scenery has been heavily edited, but just look at this clip! (I didn't realize it was dubbed in Spanish until the DVD was ripped, converted and imported into iMovie, my apologies!)

If you're looking for a little whimsy, this park is an excellent resource. The neoclassical and romantic gardens are part of an estate that belonged to a family called Desvalls until it was donated to the city in 1967. Prior to this, it had been the host to many social and cultural events, including open-air theater performances.

The Desvalls palace

The real gem of the park, for me, is the stunning cypress maze, which is the source of the park's name. What child doesn't dream of playing in a real life labyrinth! Seriously! Don't you just love those rare moments when you get to cross one of those "things to do before I die" off your list?

The maze is actually big enough to get you lost! I think the best part is passing other adventurers going in a direction you've already learned is a dead end. Watch for exchanged sinister smiles as you pass other folks, they are telling.

That, my friends, is the face of someone who already knows the way through the maze and is about to dash off leaving his poor, unknowing lover to fend for himself!

To be honest, the labyrinth was the only reason I wanted to visit, but I was pleasantly surprised to see how much more the park has to offer. The maze spits you out at tiered terrace which overlooks the park. Behind the central pavilion on the highest terrace is a pond which draws its water from a natural source.

Once you've successfully made it to the pavilions, from there you can take any of several trails that lead you through the rest of the park. Some will lead you through the woods where you'll find babbling brooks and waterfalls. Fountains and beautiful sculptures are placed strategically throughout.

Others will take you to flower gardens that seem to never end.

You'll be taking pseudo-artistic macro shots until your arms want to fall off.

I fell in love with this place and was so inspired by students from the nearby university who had planted themselves all over the gardens to study or read. I definitely plan to return. And if you ever come visit me, I'd definitely love to take you!

Oh yeah, it should be noted that these photos are all actually from July. Whoops! Better late than never!

1 comment:

  1. Ok I have decided that we need to make a list of places that we need to see when we visit you, which WILL eventually happen!! I'm trying to remember what I already said...

    The Miniature Place (you know, with the zip line thingy)
    The Tiny Country With The Elvis Cow (Andorra)
    The Labyrinth Garden

    Already, with those things and seeing you's a fail proof justification of money-spending. I miss you and D.
    And my camera longs for Spain.