Things to do in Barcelona

Sagrada Familia is finally nearing completion with only one tower remaining

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A fifth tower at Barcelona's iconic Sagrada Familia basilica, a masterpiece originally designed by the famed Antoni Gaudí, is finally ready. Nearing its completion after over 140 years, the sixth and final one is anticipated by 2026, marking the basilica's full realization.

Sagrada Familia - The Towers

Sagrada Familia

This architectural wonder boasts 18 colossal towers, each representing biblical figures: the 12 apostles, the four evangelists, the Virgin Mary, and Jesus. The evangelist towers, recently illuminated, rise to a staggering 443 feet, with the Virgin Mary's tower crowned by a 12-pointed star at 453 feet. Once complete, the Jesus Christ tower will soar to an impressive 566 feet, crowned by a 56-foot four-armed cross. The whole basilica will be the world’s tallest tower, overtaking the current tallest - Ulm Minster in Germany. The two newest towers were "crowned" this October, with sculpted pieces symbolising Matthew (a man) and John (an eagle) were set atop them. This is addition to the existing towers for Mark (a lion) and Luke (an ox). The final tower will be the central and tallest tower dedicated to Christ.

When will Sagrada Familia be completed?

The journey of the basilica has been long and tumultuous. At the time of Gaudí's death in 1926, merely 10-15% was complete. The Spanish Civil War further hampered progress, resulting in the loss of many original designs. However, using surviving materials and inspired adaptations, the project continued, leading to its designation as a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1984. It was only in 2019 that the basilica received official building permits, despite being under construction since 1882! To celebrate the completion of this fifth tower, the church announced on Facebook that there will be an inauguration mass on November 12, to honor the basilica's progress. Don't miss this architectural marvel on your next visit to Barcelona!


When will the Sagrada Família be completed?

The anticipated completion date for the Sagrada Família is 2026, which will mark the 100th anniversary of Antoni Gaudí's death. However, the construction timeline might be affected by various factors, including funding and unforeseen delays.

Why has the construction taken so long?

The construction of the Sagrada Família began in 1882 and has faced various challenges such as Gaudí's intricate design, interruptions during the Spanish Civil War, financial constraints, and the fact that it's largely funded by private donations and ticket sales have contributed to its prolonged construction. Additionally, Gaudí's death in 1926 left the project with many unanswered design questions.


What makes the design of the Sagrada Família unique?

Antoni Gaudí's design for the Sagrada Família is a fusion of Gothic and Art Nouveau forms. The basilica is renowned for its intricate facades depicting biblical scenes, the grand interiors inspired by nature with tree-like columns, and the symbolic towers dedicated to biblical figures.

Do I need to purchase tickets in advance?

Yes, it's highly recommended to buy tickets online in advance, especially during peak tourist seasons, to avoid long wait times and possible sold-out dates.

How long should I allocate for my visit?

A typical visit can last between 1.5 to 2.5 hours, depending on whether you're taking a guided tour, accessing the towers, or just exploring the basilica.

Is there a dress code for visiting the Sagrada Família?

Yes, as a consecrated space, visitors should dress modestly. Shoulders should be covered, and very short shorts or skirts are discouraged.

Can I access the towers?

Yes, with a tower access ticket, you can ascend one of the towers by elevator. However, the descent is often via a staircase. Note that the towers might not be suitable for those with mobility issues or a fear of heights.

Is the basilica wheelchair accessible?

The basilica is wheelchair accessible. However, the towers are not.

Sagrada Familia Completion