Urban style skateboarding has become the norm in the skateboard world. While this type of skateboarding provides an outlet for skateboarders to explore their landscapes and become familiar with all aspects of the communities surrounding them, it comes with one big drawback. In the United States, urban skateboarding is usually illegal.While many townships and municipalities loosely enforce rules that ban skateboarding in public places, there is still a difficulty for skateboarders to perform their activities freely. Many members of the American public view skateboarding as a destructive and reckless activity and will not hesitate to condemn skateboarders in public. Many business owners view skateboarders as a nuisance and are quick to kick them off of their property. There also are many townships and municipalities that do enforce their anti-skateboarding laws, making court appearances a reality for skateboarders.So what have American skateboarders done to combat this problem? They’ve outsourced the places they skateboard. Specifically, many have flocked to Barcelona, Spain.With a rich urban landscape and unique architecture, Barcelona has proven itself to be a skateboarder’s dream. However, its appeal extends far beyond its physical appearance. Its real draw is the philosophies of typical citizens of Barcelona. In Barcelona, skateboarding is not viewed in the same rebellious and negative light that it is common in the United States. Here, it is viewed as more of an art form. Interestingly, this same philosophy has helped to provide a haven for street artists as well.As a result, professional skateboarders have been flocking to the city for over a decade to film their tricks for upcoming skateboard movies. The wave of skateboard fans and skateboard enthusiasts have quickly followed suit. A consequence of this movement has been a city that caters to more than just a skateboarder’s basic desire to ride a skateboard. Stores, clubs, and bars that cater specifically to skateboarders have popped up all over the city.So where exactly do skateboarders go? There are literally hundreds of answers to this question. The city’s metro system has provided the ideal medium for skateboarders to explore the cityscape at little cost. However, there are many destinations where skateboarders who have little time to explore the city flock to.The city’s most famous destination is the Museum of Contemporary Art in Barcelona, also known as MACBA. Made entirely of granite, the public plaza that sits in front of MACBA is a skateboarder’s dream. This area is littered with ledges to grind, stairs to jump down, smooth flat ground for a skateboarder to practice his or her basic skills, and a wide variety of places for skateboarders to sit and talk.Perhaps the most second famous destination in the city is the park located at La Avenida Parallel. Officially, it is known as “Jardins de les tres arboles,” but to most American skateboarders it is known as Parallel. This park contains many blocks that skateboarders practice balancing maneuvers known as “manuals.” It also provides a scenic environment.The third most famous destination in the city is the bus station known as “Sants Estacio.” Skateboarders have unofficially taken over this area, incorporating makeshift obstacles into the natural landscape that already makes it ideal for skateboarding. This destination has proven to be a regular meet-up spot for native skateboarders in the city. While skate tourists often visit this destination, they are not always welcome.The city of Barcelona boasts a vast array of attractions and opportunities for skateboarders. Personally, I had always read good things about the city. However, I could never fully grasp the full extent of what Barcelona had to offer until I visited the city myself. If you truly want to experience it all, I suggest you book a flight today. However, I can’t guarantee you will want to return.
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