29 November 2012

Port Vell

Today I went to see the port after looking at apartments. To get to the port, you get off the metro at the stop 'Barceloneta,' which is in a neighborhood where all the fishermen used to live. It's really old (that probably goes without saying ... EUROPE IS REALLY OLD) and full of tiny apartment buildings and there are a lot of sea food restaurants.

From the metro you walk to the sea. There is a circus near there and I stopped inside and watched the tight rope walkers rehearse inside the big top for a while before I saw the ships!

The harbor was redeveloped for the Olympics ... a big shopping mall and whole pedestrian streets were added. I guess before that it was just kinda sketchy and industrial. And now it connects to the Rambla, with a roundabout that has this huge monument to Christopher Columbus in it.

The maritime museum of Barcelona, which aims to "preserve Barcelona's maritime cultural heritage" maintains an seagoing fleet of five ships. How cool is that??? The ships are restored to get them back to their original structure (take away any motors and stuff that were added later), and kept in the water. The idea is that the best way to preserve the ships is to keep them in good working order. (Basically the same philosophy that living printing museums have about presses.) This one is called the "Santa Eulalia" and you can just walk on board her from the sidewalk!

Yes, those are palm trees. In November. MN≠BCN.
The Santa Eulalia was mostly used to transport dry goods around the Medeterranen, but she also took trips to Cuba. She was a smuggling vessel in the 1930s, and in the 1970s she was used as an "auxiliary vessel for underwater work." In 1998 the museum acquired her, restored her, and put her back in the water. 

They let you climb around on the ship and see all of it, inside and out. Also, on Monday mornings at 10am they take this ship out on a spin and you can sign up to go.

The ship slept 12 men. Each bunk has a light, curtain, and storage. That little box in the wall has signal flags.

A table for reading and storing maps. Unfortunately the drawers were locked.
The kitchen was above decks because, if it was in the mail hull, a kitchen fire could end up burning the whole vessel. The tour guides still use it to make coffee and lunch!


  1. uhhhh HOW MUCH IS IT TO GO ON THIS MAGNIFICENT SHIP? Scratch that. I'll bring a blank check. But really...

  2. Dude, it's free if you're a student. If you actually go sailing I think it's 10 euros. :)