Tours Of Barcelona

Written by Helen Glenn Court
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It's rash to say that all visits to Spain include tours of Barcelona, but it's probably not that far off the mark. The city--which Hans Christian Anderson called the Paris of Spain when he visited in 1862--was founded by either the Phoenicians or the Carthaginians. It did not become especially important, however, until about 300 AD. Despite ups and downs during Europe's somewhat tumultuous activities in the centuries since then, Barcelona has remained vital and inviting.

The History behind Tours of Barcelona

What's in a name? Sometimes the story is a story. The tradition that explained the naming of Barcelona for Carthaginian leader Hamilcar Barca, for example, has been discounted. But part of the Roman colony name--Faventia Julia Augusta Pia Barcino (wow)--did survive during the 300 years of Visigoth occupation as Barcinona. When the Moors arrived in 717, they called the city, an important religious center, Barjeluna. The name as we know it today arose soon afterwards, when the French (Franks) of Charlemagne gained control in 801.

Soon an important trading center, as tours of Barcelona will explain, the city was weakened during the waves of the Black Plague in the 13th and 14th centuries. It declined even further during the Hapsburg monarchy, the rise of Turkey in the east, and the discovery of America. Interestingly, after the city was taken and retaken during the wars of the Spanish succession, its economic health took a turn for the better with the development of the cotton industry.

Since then, despite the occupation by Napoleon's troops, Barcelona has only strengthened. Catalonia has emerged as the country's wealthiest region. Tours of Barcelona will focus attention on the surviving art and architecture from the city's remarkable and varied history. The battle between old and new continues in Barcelona, but it's a city to enjoy. The cuisine is superb, and wines of the region include Cava, Alella, and Priorat.

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