Top Five Unusual Buildings

21 March 2012

While many of us live our lives surrounded by block buildings and solid foundations, not all of the world’s buildings are as straight forward as a brick house. The globe is full of weird and wacky structures, from gothic castles to upside down houses, space-age buildings and surreal structures - many of which have to be seen to be believed. Here are our pick for the world's most unusual buildings. 

 Sagrada Familia

Sagrada Familia, Spain
Antoni Gaudi's gothic masterpiece, the Sagrada Familia is one of the most famous structures in Barcelona, Spain. Though construction began on the cathedral in 1882, Gaudi didn't take over until one year later, transforming the designs into a spectacular gothic building with 18 spires and 3 grand facades. By the time Gaudi died in 1883, less than a quarter of the building had been completed. Even today construction still continues on the structure, even though it is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Kansas City Public Library, USA
The Kansas City Public Library isn't your usual shy library building. In fact its impressive book façade is pretty hard to miss amongst the city buildings of Kansas, Missouri. The impressive building features 22 oversized titles nominated by the city including Romeo and Juliet and Charlotte's Web.

The Crooked House, Poland
Inspired by fairytale illustrations, The Crooked House in Sopot, Poland has made its way onto numerous 'weird building lists' over the years thanks to its surreal and squished appearance. In Polish the house is known as Krywy Domek and is part of the Rezydent shopping centre. All up The Crooked House measures approximately 4,000 square meters in size and can be reached from two entrance points.

Lotus Temple, India
India's Bahá'í House of Worship, commonly known as Lotus Temple, has been the recipient of numerous architectural awards since it was built in 1986. As its name sake suggests, the Lotus Temple is inspired by a lotus flower, featuring 27 free-standing marble clad petals. The temple can hold up to 2,500 people and is surrounded by beautiful gardens and nine ponds.

Nautilus House, Mexico
More sculpture than house, the Nautilus House in Mexico is an architectural marvel inspired by the Nautilus shell. Built in 2006, the shell house is designed much like a snail shell and is made from concrete and chicken wire, making it virtually maintenance free. Inside the structure are smooth surfaces, circular patterns and greenery.  The shell is inhabited by a young couple with two children.

Lauren Burvill

Australian born but London based, I'm a sucker for big cities and small tropical islands. When travelling, I like eating like a local, dressing like a local, but staying in 5 star style. Have a travel story to share? Tweet me @laurenburvill.