The harbours of Barcelona - View, Circumnavigation
As it should be for a Mediterranean metropolis, Barcelona does not only have some beaches but also some big harbours at its coastal line. In total, there are three main harbours in the city itself: the old harbour (Port Vell) with its promenade moles, the small marina Port Olímpic, thus the Olympic Harbour with its restaurant promenades as the big industrial harbour underneath the Montju´c.
The view of the old harbour belongs to the standard program of all visitors of Barcelona; What is less interesting is the harbour itself but much more the moles in the harbour area. The olympic harbour is mainly a place where one goes out at nights . During a tour to the Montju´c, one can be impressed by the size and the operational activities of the industrial harbour.
Port Vell (Old Harbour)
The best way to visit the old harbour of the city is after having walked down the Rambla from the Plaša de Catalunya. Then, one straight comes across to the Plaša del Portal, where the 60 m heighted Columbo column is waiting. This monument was founded on the occasion of the first world exhibition in Barcelona in the year 1888. Now, one is situaded right at the water and
one is spoiled for choice in which direction to continue.
In direction to the seaside, there is the Moll de Barcelona at the right, at which end the World Trade Center is located with some shipping piers for big cruisers; At the left, there is a little wood bridge on the Rambla de Mar that leads to the Moll d'Espanya. But before, one should in any case visit the gorgeus building of the harbour administration. The bridge for pedestrians splits in two from time to time so that the smaller ships can get through to their landing place.
On the Moll d'Espanya, the huge shopping centre Maremagnum (further information on the shopping-page) is already waiting. Right behind it, one finds a huge cinema complex. What is specially interesting is the IMAX-Cinema that is located on a huge cupola and films, either in Imax as also in Omnimax and in 3D-format are shown. The entrance for two films costs approximately 10 €; Right beside the cimemas there is the aquarium of the city. For such an horrenduous entrance fee, one gets a lot of fishes to see in a spectacular way...
One walks back to the mainland on the Moll d'Espanya. The whole port basin is limited to the inside by the straightaway Mol de la Fusta. On this long line, there are numerous benchs for resting, from which one has a nice view to the port basin.
After having walked alongside the whole way that was recently described, the feet already ache. But still the Moll de la Barceloneta is missing. Passing the Museu d'Historia de Catalunya, one walks further longside a long extended and wide harbour promenade. It is also worthwhile to get here in the evenings as there are some good fish restaurants.
Port Olímpic (Olympic Harbour)
The Port Olimpic is the newest harbour of the city. It was finished in the year 1992 on the occasion of the Olympic Games. Before that, there were only old factories on this spot. The olympic harbour is a modern small marina with a lot or even hundreds of restaurants at all sides. There are some really good restaurants but also tourist dosshouses where I never would eat anything again even if it was for free.
Due to the coloured lights it is very romantic to walk in the evenings through the moles of the Port Olimpic. Unfortunately, there is in front of each restaurant a lure is "inviting" one to have dinner there, a thing that is very annoying.
Right behind the Port Olimpic there are the two towers of Barcelona, from which one belongs to an insurance company and the other is an extravagant and extremly expensive luxury hotel. Between both skyscrapers, a huge fish of steel glistens either at day as also at night. The nearly 50 m long fish is a real showpiece. Depending on the time of the day, it glistens in different colours.
Port Franc de Barcelona (Industrial Harbour)
Surely not interesting for a visit but great to look at from above is the modern industrial harbour of the city that is located right at the bottom of the local mountain Montju´c. Once, it was one of the most significant Mediterranean harbours; today, it is "only" one of the most significant harbours of Spain.
From the peak of the Montju´c, one has a fabulous view to each of the port basins. What is specially impressive is to see from above how a wide motorway opens in order to let the ferries and the cruisers enter into the port basin. Of course, it is also spectcular when a big container ship enters into the harbour and lands very slowly and carefully at its landing place.
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Copyright: Patrick Wagner, www.tourist-guide.biz