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    Updated on Sep 15, 2018. Posted on Jan 14, 2018

    16 Facts About Barcelona That'll Make You Say, "Really?"

    Whodda thunk?

    1. Barcelona's most famous beaches are manmade.

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    To gear up for its Olympics-hosting gig in 1992, the city renovated a 2-mile stretch of beach — previously in poor condition — by importing sand from Egypt.

    2. Sagrada Familia, Barcelona's iconic cathedral, is the world's largest unfinished church.

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    As of 2011, it was expected to complete construction around 2026.

    3. ...its architect, Antoni Gaudi, died in a freak accident in which he was hit by a tram.

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    But the actual fatal part was the fact that passerby mistook Gaudi for a beggar and didn't bother offering timely help that could've saved his life. He died three days later.

    4. Las Ramblas, the city's most famous street, is actually a series of five smaller streets.

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    The boulevard is packed with buskers, art installations, restaurants, and shops, and is an essential stop for visitors.

    5. The city of Barcelona is home to nine UNESCO World Heritage sites.

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    By comparison, the entire country of the USA has 23 sites. (FYI, the above is Casa Batlló by Antoni Gaudi.)

    6. It is home to one of the world's oldest amusement parks, Tibidabo Amusement Park.

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    Opened in 1901, Tibidabo amusement park is set atop Tibidabo Mountain and offers impressive panoramic views of Barcelona.

    7. About 40% of residents speak Catalan, in addition to Spanish.

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    Catalan is not a dialect of Spanish, as many may presume, but a language derived from Latin.

    8. There are 12 abandoned metro stations under the city.

    Flickr / Tobias Mandt / Via flic.kr

    One of its most famous ones is the Gaudi station, located just below Avinguda de Gaudí, in front of the Sagrada Família. Rumors say that mysterious, ghostly figures have been spotted at the station. 😨

    9. Camp Nou, home to FC (Futbol Club) Barcelona, is the biggest stadium in Europe.

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    It has a capacity of 99,354, and helped host the Olympic games in 1992.

    10. In 2005, Spain became the fourth country ever to legalize same-sex marriage.

    Cesar Rangel / AFP / Getty Images

    Despite religious opposition, polls showed that most Spaniards supported gay marriage.

    11. A figure of a man pooping is featured in most nativity scenes in Barcelona.

    12. In recent years, Spain's bourgeoning weed scene has been dubbed as the "Holland of the south."

    David Ramos / Getty Images

    In 2017, the rise of Cannabis clubs in the country (there as many as 700 in operation today) even prompted the government of Catalonia — of which Barcelona is the capital — to legalize marijuana.

    13. Barcelona has the worst traffic in Spain, according to TomTom's traffic index.

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    Drivers in Barcelona spend an average of 31 extra minutes per hour at the wheel during peak hours.

    14. Park Güell, a popular public park system, was originally meant to be a housing complex.

    Cesar Rangel / AFP / Getty Images

    It was designed by Antoni Gaudi and is a modernist work of art. Take a look for yourself.

    15. It has Europe's first and only museum dedicated to funeral carriages.

    CEMENTIRIS DE BARCELONA / Via Facebook: cementirisdebarcelona

    Spooky lighting, off-white walls, and hanging lanterns apparently contribute to a spooky vibe.

    16. In many tapas bars and cafes, it's completely normal to throw used napkins on the floor.

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    It's not a widespread practice (aka, please don't start throwing napkins on the floor at your nice, sit-down restaurant), but at some bars, some people would say that the more napkins on the floor, the better the food.

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