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Camp Nou Barcelona Stadium

Camp Nou: history of football and passion

Camp Nou isn't just the biggest stadium in Barcelona, it is also the largest stadium in Europe.  The passion that exists for the Football Club of Barcelona, which is affectionately known as "El Barςa" isn't the only reason for tourists to visit this venue.  A visit here is, of course, of great interest for football fans but music lovers and those who are fascinated by history will also find this an interesting place to visit.  In addition to sporting events (which aren't only football matches), Camp Nou is also a venue that has played host to great international artists such as Bruce Springsteen and Coldplay. The club's history is profound and is of international interest and is something that you can learn about in detail by visiting the inside of the club and the museum which is dedicated to this legendary football club.

The Camp Nou Stadium

The Camp Nou Stadium

The passionate desire for a new stadium

Initially, Barcelona's football team had to use a variety of different pitches until in 1922, the stadium of Les Corts was inaugurated and was subsequently remodeled several times in order to find enough space for the ever growing fan base.   From 1948, everyone was more receptive to the idea of building a completely new stadium although it wasn't easy to convince the local authorities of this.  It is said that what finally brought about the change of view was the arrival of the now legendary Ladislau Kubala, an incredible player who was able to really arouse the spirit of the club and the passion of its fans. It was precisely after the consecutive victories which secured two League titles in 1950  that the then president, Augustí Montal y Galobart, signed the purchase order for the area that was known as La Maternidad. This was followed by a somewhat turbulent period during which, there was talk of moving the construction of the future stadium to somewhere north of El Diagonal, until the new president, Francesc-Miró Sans was elected who managed to reinstate the original plans.  As a result of this, in 1954 the first stones of the future Camp Nou were laid. 

Original photo of the construction of the Camp Nou
An original photo of the construction of Camp Nou

The inauguration of Camp Nou

The investment required for the construction of the new stadium cost a fortune and brought about a level of debt that would have to be shouldered for many years to come.  This great Catalan venue was inaugurated in 1957 on the feast day of la Mercé, the city's patron saint.  Despite the fact that the construction work on the stadium hadn't been completed, more than 90,0000 spectators were able to take part in the event and in the afternoon, the first game was played inside the stadium.  

The Stadium today

In the years that followed, some noteworthy innovations were introduced: the installation of reflectors in 1959, the arrival of electronic markets in 1976 and the construction of a VIP and Press area in 1981/2.  At this time, the stadium's capacity increased to a space that can now accommodate 99,354 supporters.  It is also worth mentioning the year 1984 because this was when the fascinating team's museum was created which is now accessible to all. 

Visiting Camp Nou

Visiting Camp Nou is highly recommended, in particular, we would suggest the visit entitled: The Camp Nou Experience Tour which also includes entry to the El Barça museum. This is a tour that you can do on your own but perhaps you might prefer the company of an expert guide who will be able to cover all your requirements and will be able to answer any questions you may have in addition to being able to accompany you into the stands.  If this is the case, a private guide in Barcelona would be the ideal solution and you can reserve this service when you fill out the booking form on this web page.  Alternatively, you can enjoy some other options by purchasing a tourist package: with this option, then the tour of Camp Nou is carried out with the Sightseeing Bus and Camp Nou tour. And there is another possibility which is to use the iVenture card which will also enable you to visit Barcelona's largest football stadium as well a final and most exciting option which would be to attend one of the games played by the mythical Barςa! Tickets can be purchased directly on our web page: Tickets to Barcelona Attractions.

Things which you may not know about Camp Nou: from the past and the future

Although you may not be aware of it initially, all you have to do is walk through the streets of Barcelona for a few hours to realize how deeply the fabulous club of FC Barcelona is rooted in the social fabric of Barcelona.  This is the reason why Camp Nou is one of the places that is most frequently visited by tourists in Barcelona, (just think that the club's museum became the most frequently visited attraction in the whole of Catalonia).  This information, if you think about the richness of Spain's cultural and historical heritage, gives you an idea of how football is inextricably intertwined with the local culture.  In total, there are five European finals that are played in this stadium, to which, you can add the various finals of the Copa del Rey and the matches from the final stages of Europa 1964 and the 1982 World Cup.

As mentioned previously, there were numerous restructuring works undertaken over time.  In particular, the recent work of Sir Norman Foster, the British architect, is one of the highlights.  Thanks to his design, ten new levels were added to the stands which took the capacity up to 106,000 spectators and covers were also installed to protect the spectators from the elements but, at the same time, due to their versatility, also permit the sunlight to reach the pitch.  But the most surprising feature is the stadium's facade.  This was designed like a mosaic which deliberately reflect the team's colors (blue and maroon), combined with the colors of the Catalan flag (yellow and red).  Inevitably, even here, there is a touch of Gaudí: Foster has stated that he was greatly inspired by the great Catalan architect. 

And finally, we would like to reassure anyone who hasn't visited Camp Nou before that: there will be no further transfers of the venue, a new stadium will not be built.  Thanks to a huge amount of investment, huge qualitative (but not quantitative) changes are anticipated by the 2022-23 season which include an upgrade of the Wi-Fi network, the construction of underground parking which will facilitate access to the stadium, changes to the first level of the stadium to improve visibility, the provision of a cover which will amplify the volume of support for the local team but which, above all, will help to protect the spectators from the rain or the sun.  We know you can't wait to get to Barcelona: book your private guide now! 

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