The MNAC (Museu National d'Art de Catalunya) sits in a priviledged position at the top of Montjüic with views over Barcelona. The building itself is massive and impressive but is currently under scaffolding for renovation but the collections it houses are the most spectacular part.
There are permanent collections that range from what could be salvaged from the Romanesque through the Gothic, Baroque to the Modern period. All have their own wing in this light and airy building as well as space for a concert hall, several restaurants and bookshops.
This is a must for all visitors who want to get a feel for the cultural richness of Catalonia as well as some of the best views of Barcelona and enjoying strolling through the tranquil and cool gardens all around.
For anyone interested in Dalí the triangle of the Theatre Museum in Figueras, Dalí’s house/museum in Portlligat(nr Cadaques) and his wife Galas Castle in Púbol (nr La Bisbal) are all must visits. The Museum in Figueras is the second most visited in Spain after the Prado in Madrid and clearly shows off his true creative genius on a grand scale. The Castle at Púbol and his house in Portlligat offer a more intimate view of their lives as well as all the numerous famous visitors that spent time in this area.
Dalí gave Gala the Castle at Púbol and may have regretted it as she soon insisted on written permission before allowing him to visit. She died there in 1982 and Dalí moved to the Castle to try and come to terms with her death but this ended up with his setting fire to himself while in bed (accident or on purpose was never very clear) and was moved to some rooms above the Museum in Figueras with a full time medical staff until his death in 1989.
The Castle shows some typical Dalí creativity such as elephants on stilts in the gardens but overall is a more subdued experience while the setting is certainly delightful and peaceful. The countryside around Púbol is typical of the Empordà, rolling fields of wheat or grass with patches of olive groves and pine forests mixed with cork oaks. For the more adventurous, catching a train from either Barcelona or Girona and getting off in Flaça means you can walk the back road through La Pera to get to Púbol which will take you some 45 mins to absorb the wonderful views.