Top 3 Architecture Trips
Architecture students are among some of the luckiest when it comes to combining study with travel – there are just so many examples of incredible architecture out there in the world! The human imagination for creating aesthetic yet functional buildings is almost limitless, and it spans the globe.
It’s almost difficult to know where to begin, but here are a few choice stops on your way to studying architecture abroad that are sure to open your eyes. From the modernist curvature of Gaudí’s creations in Barcelona, Spain to the bold Brutalist edifices of Belgrade, Serbia to the delicate Middle Eastern filigree of Marrakech, here are three of the most fascinating architecture-oriented trips you could hope for!
1. Barcelona, Spain
Studying architecture almost certainly must include a close look at the Modernist architecture movement, and that means a visit to the gorgeous seaside city of Barcelona. This unique and eclectic city features tons of examples of the work of Surrealist sculptor, ceramicist and painter Joan Miró, as well as a number of the most famous works of architectural mad genius Antoni Gaudí. Here you’ll get to visit his iconic Parque Güell, a Modernist candyland oasis of wild spiraling, curving shapes. You’ll also visit his famously unfinished masterpiece the Sagrada Familia Cathedral, begun in 1883 and awaiting final touches that should be completed in 2026, the centennial of Gaudí’s death. There’s so much more on offer in Barcelona including the Palace Güell and the work of a number of other Modernists that you may never want to leave!
2. Belgrade, Serbia
And now for something completely different, and that’s the Brutalist architecture on display in Belgrade, Serbia. You’ll start with a walk along Knez Mihailova Street where there are tons of older buildings, but the highlights of the city tour are the Brutalist Eastern and Western Gates. Each of these was completed in the 1970s and provide stunning examples of the Brutalist style. The Eastern Gate, called the Three Sisters because of its three towers, is home to 2,000 people in residential apartments. You’ll also be introduced to members of the University of Serbia’s architecture department, who will guide you through the variations on style and nuances that you’ll see in this ancient, historic city.
3. Marrakech, Morocco
Heading southward, it’s time to visit an ancient city featuring incredible Moorish architecture, Marrakech. From the Badi Palace built in 1593 at the behest of the Sultan Ahmad al-Mansur to ancient Jemaa el-Fnaa market to the Dar Menebhi Palace, the sumptuous treat of ancient Moorish architecture on display in Marrakech is virtually without end. You’ll also get to visit the incredible Saadian Tombs as well as seeing several examples of the architecture of ancient, legendary mosques like the Kasbah Mosque, and the Koutoubia Mosque, constructed in the 12th century for the Berber Almohad Caliph Yaqub Al-Mansur. And don’t forget to visit the Majorelle Gardens, built in 1923 by the French artist Jacques Majorelle. Today his former villa is home to the Art Museum of Marrakech, the Berber Museum, and the decidedly more modern but nonetheless equally impressive Musee Yves Saint Laurent. Throw in the incredible food, music and nightlife of Marrakech and you’re talking about an architecture-oriented trip of a lifetime!
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