Montjuïc Fountains

Barcelona, Spain

Font Magica, The Magic Fountains. The most breathtaking landmark I’ve ever seen.

Font Magica, The Magic Fountains

Summer, 2012

To this day, nothing I have ever seen or done as filled me with as much overwhelming awe as has the Magic Fountains of Mont Juïc.

It was a long day of site-seeing, bicycling, exploring the city, and just generally being continuously energetic. My class and I had just finished a particularly good meal and were feeling the food–coma slowly take over. Before we made the long trek back to the hotel, however, the A.C.I.S. guide suggested one final destination.

Almost every single person in our group declined the offer: Feet were too sore, stomach was too full, taking the subway sounded unpleasant, everyone has to get up at 7:00am tomorrow. 

In their defense, the guide didn’t make his case very clear. He did a poor job of explaining where we were going, and didn’t really describe the fountains well enough to sound appealing to make the stuffy underground trip.

One of my friends and I, however, decided to stay awake long enough to see it: We might not ever be back in Barcelona again. We might not ever be back in Spain again. The guide said the fountain is only lit during certain times of the year. What if we don’t go and we miss out on an amazing opportunity? Four people from the Illinois class also decided to come along.

I had never heard of these fountains, and so didn’t know what to expect.

We took the subway to Montjuïc, which is the hill on which The Palau Nacional sits. The sun had set hours ago, and Barcelona’s night life was coming alive. The streets were getting more and more crowded with excited people each on their own adventure.

We made it to a long stretch of street leading up to The Palau Nacional. At the end of the street we were coming from, there was a huge (for lack of a better word) tall square column lit up with yellow lights, atop which sat a statue of a horse-driven chariot.

The street itself had a two lines of fountains on either side of it, with lines of lanterns behind. These lines of fountains ran the length of the entire street, which looked quite impressive They were each just a single wide jet of water, roughly 5 feet tall, and changed colors.

Taken from google: Note the large square collumn with the lit up chariot/horse statue, and the line of gold fountains/lanters running down the street

Taken from google: Note the large square column with the lit up chariot/horse statue, and the line of gold fountains/lanterns running down the street

Soon, though, we came in sight of the main attraction.

There was a fan of spotlights extending from the dome of the palace, illuminating the night sky in stripes of white-blue. The palace itself was lit up in tones of brilliant gold. Leading down from the palace was a staircase of about four waterfalls, one with a bridge crossing over it. These were also lit in shades of brilliant gold, and shimmered with the flow of the water. There was another set of fountains at the top of this cascade, and another set of fountains at the bottom. People dotted the bridge and surrounded the waterfalls, giving us some perspective of the immense magnitude of the castle and the water features.

Taken from google: note the bridge crossing the waterfalls. This is behind the main fountain and the four columns

Taken from google: note the bridge crossing the waterfalls. This is behind the main fountain and the four columns

In front of the water falls, there were four massive columns standing as sentinels and displayed in bright golden light.

In front of these columns was the main fountain. The Trevi and the Bellagio have nothing on this. More golden waterfalls surrounded this main fountain. Set to music, the fountain changed colors and danced in every possible configuration. During the twenty-or-so minutes we were there, it never looked the same twice.

Taken from google

Taken from google

We could feel the spray even from probably thirty feet away. This was actually great, because it meant that the area right in front of the fountain was relatively uncrowded, and we could get as close as we want without pushing past anyone.

Me in front of the Magic Fountain

Me in front of the Magic Fountain

The closer we got to the fountains, the more excited we became. We were jumping up and down and exclaiming things like, “THIS IS THE BEST MOMENT OF MY LIFE,” “EVERYONE ELSE IS MISSING OUT,” I definitely added a shriek or two.

I’m so glad that we decided to go, and everyone else in the tour group regretted missing the spectacle. I highly reccomend seeing this fountain if you are anywhere in Spain. It’s worth making a long trip for all on its own. No matter what, you should absolutely add this to your bucket list.

Additional fun facts: Like I mentioned before, I really had never heard of this fountain before seeing it, but afterward I did some research:

2,600 liters of water are pumped through. Per SECOND

The fountain was constructed in 1929. I would never have guessed. I assumed it was a recent addition to the city.

Of course, it has been renovated since then, and music was added many years after initial construction.

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