Barcelona is unique in the ways it engages children — and the entire family — in its art and architecture. It’s impossible not to feel involved as you stand in front of one of Anton Gaudi’s surrealistic buildings or explore the interior spaces. His revolutionary architecture makes kids feel as though they’ve traveled to a different universe; even teen boredom is impossible, and children of any age will be drawn in by their magic.
Gaudi is not the only Barcelona artist whose work is a good introduction to art. Paintings and sculptures of Joan Miro are bright and playful, so appealing that Spain’s tourism authority used his work in its posters and advertising.
Best known of Gaudi’s work — and hard to miss — are the soaring sharp spires of Basílica de la Sagrada Família. The first impression of its tall, slender spires and riot of delicately carved stone embellishments is of a fairy-tale castle or a sultan’s palace out of Aladdin. The church is as riotous inside its soaring sanctuary, lit by sunlight through its stained-glass windows. Here, art seems to embrace visitors.
On a different note, take the kids to the two astonishing homes Gaudi designed. La Pedrera (Casa Mila) looks more like a giant sculpture with its free-form lines and vine-like ironwork. Looking at the outside isn’t enough: Go to the undulating roof to see the chimneys. Kids who’ve seen Star Wars can’t help noticing their resemblance to Darth Vader or the storm troopers. Take older kids on the night tour, with music and a light show.
Casa Batlló is quite different, but equally unconventional, with curving windows and face-like balconies. Adding to its dream-like quality are the colored tiles and stained-glass windows. Very young kids will be more involved with the art all around them in Park Güell, where abstract designs of colorful tiles decorate stairways, fountains and bridges.
In Parc de Montjuïc, close to the Olympic stadium, Fundació Joan Miró shows the colorful and playful paintings and nearly 200 sculptures of the Surrealist-Abstract artist. Endlessly creative, Miro charms with bright primary colors, bold shapes and original abstracts. The bright museum, lit by skylights, is a perfect setting for his upbeat art.
Pick up a sketch pad or coloring book in the museum shop so kids can create their own surrealistic works of art as they tour the museum. A blank notebook with a Miro cover can become a journal to hold souvenirs of the trip. T-shirts with Miro designs also make for a good souvenir of their art adventures in Barcelona.
It’s time to start dreaming of your next family trip. Here’s some destination inspiration for you. Take a visual journey through these pies from around the world, and maybe you’ll be inspired to take that next trip for a delicious slice.
United Airlines is in the midst of a major initiative to modernize its fleet over the next several years. After first announcing the plan in 2021, planes fitted with United’s signature interior are finally beginning to appear across the airline’s narrowbody fleet of Boeing and Airbus planes. United flyers are sure to notice these enhancements from the moment they step on board: Each new or updated plane sports remodeled seats, seatback entertainment screens for everyone, Bluetooth connectivity and more, all adding up to a better experience on every journey.
Trying to plan a multigen trip? You may anticipate trouble finding a travel destination, activities and more to appeal to every member of your crew. However, a new report from Hilton found there are certain experiences all travelers want right now, regardless of generation.
With the holiday season upon us, resorts all over the world pull out all the stops to bring the joy of the holidays to family travelers of all ages. Here are five more resorts to check out this holiday season:
As the only major U.S. airline to own a flight school, United Airlines already hit a major milestone, and now the carrier celebrates another important — and historic — step as the inaugural class of United Aviate Academy pilots graduates, leading the next generation of aviators. The 51 students in the graduating class were majority, at 80 percent, women and people of color — another stride toward United’s goal of training 5,000 new pilots by 2030 with half women or POC.
When searching for unique gifts for family travelers, Etsy is a good place to begin. A marketplace of online shops owned by craftspeople and collectors, Etsy is filled with handcrafted works in all mediums, often one-of-a-kind or custom-made. It’s like an open studio, a place to share the latest creations directly to people who appreciate handcrafted things.