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Best things to do and see in Madrid

INTERESTING MUSEUMS IN MADRID:

Three of the best art museums in the world are in Madrid. This is called the Golden Triangle due to their proximity:

MUSEO DEL PRADO

MUSEO THYSSEN-BORNEMISZA

MUSEO REINA SOFIA (Contemporary Art)

PALACIO REAL DE MADRID (Royal Palace of Madrid): You can also see the Changing of the Guard every Wednesday except during winter. The biggest one is held the first Wednesday of every month.

MUSEO ARQUEOLÓGICO NACIONAL (National Archaeological Museum of Spain)

MUSEO SOROLLA: featuring works by the famous painter Joaquín Sorolla

We suggest you visit one of these museums to see how the aristocracy of Madrid lived during the 19th century:

MUSEO LÁZARO GALDIANO

MUSEO CERRALBO

MUSEO DEL ROMANTICISMO (Museum of Romanticism)

Depending on your interests, we suggest visiting one of these museums:

MUSEO NAVAL (Museum of the Spanish Navy)

MUSEO DE AMÉRICA (Museum of the Americas, pre-Columbian and during colonization)

MUSEO NACIONAL DE ANTROPOLOGÍA (National Museum of Anthropology)

If you like soccer or sports in general, do not miss REAL MADRID STADIUM or ATLÉTICO DE MADRID STADIUM

INTERESTING CHURCHES IN MADRID

CATEDRAL DE LA ALMUDENA (Almudena Cathedral): It is just in front of the Royal Palace. Do not miss the crypt!

IGLESIA DE SAN ANTONIO DE LOS ALEMANES (Church of St. Anthony of the Germans): Amazing oval church very close to Gran Via

SAN JERÓNIMO EL REAL (St. Jerome the Royal): Also called ‘LOS JERÓNIMOS’. It is behind the Prado Museum. Traditional meeting point for the Spanish Monarchy’s events.

REAL BASÍLICA DE SAN FRANCISCO EL GRANDE (Royal Basilica of St. Francis the Great): Largest dome in Spain.

REAL ERMITA DE SAN ANTONIO DE LA FLORIDA (Royal Chapel of St. Anthony of La Florida): Ceiling and dome frescoes by Goya.

COLEGIATA DE SAN ISIDRO EL REAL (Baroque Church of San Isidro el Real): Isidore the Laborer is the patron saint of the City of Madrid.

MORE INTERESTING MONUMENTS IN MADRID

TEMPLO DE DEBOD (Egyptian Temple of Debod): Located near Plaza de España. This 2nd century BC temple was donated to Spain in 1968 as a sign of gratitude for the help provided by Spain in saving the temples of Abu Simbel.

PUERTA DE ALCALÁ: A Neo-classical monument that looks like an Arch of Triumph. In fact, it could be considered the first Arch of Triumph built in Europe after the Roman Empire.

PALACIO DE CIBELES (Cibeles Palace and former Communications Palace): There is a restaurant and a rooftop terrace with nice views of the Plaza de Cibeles.

TEATRO REAL (Royal Theatre opera house):  This wonderful theater facing the Royal Palace will turn 200 years old in 2018.  

REAL CASA DE CORREOS:  It is the oldest building in Puerta del Sol. The clock tower is very well-known for the Spanish New Year’s tradition. People across Spain eat one grape (12 total) at each chime of the clock tower’s bell for good luck.

PANTEÓN DE HOMBRES ILUSTRES (Pantheon of Illustrious Men): It is located within the Basilica of Nuestra Señora de Atocha and houses the sculpted tombs of a number of famous Spaniards.

CASÓN DEL BUEN RETIRO: Do not miss the amazing painting on the ceiling, ‘The Allegory of the Golden Fleece’ by Luca Giordano.

PLAZA DE TOROS DE LAS VENTAS (Madrid’s famous bullring): Since 1929, this Neo-Mudejar style building is one of the most important bullrings in the world.

MAIN SKYSCRAPERS IN MADRID

PUERTA DE EUROPA-TORRES KIO (Gate of Europe-Kio Towers)

TORRES BLANCAS (White towers)

CUATRO TORRES (Four Towers Business Area)

PLAZA DE ESPAÑA – TORRE DE MADRID & EDIFICIO ESPAÑA (Madrid Tower & Spain Building)

TORRE PICASSO & AZCA (Picasso Tower & Azca Complex)

TORRE DE VALENCIA

MAIN EXHIBITION CENTRES

CAIXAFORUM MADRID

ESPACIO FUNDACIÓN TELEFÓNICA

FUNDACIÓN MAPFRE

CÍRCULO DE BELLAS ARTES

CASA DE AMÉRICA

CASA ÁRABE

CENTRO DE EXPOSICIONES ARTE CANAL

LA CASA ENCENDIDA

MATADERO MADRID

LOOKOUT POINTS IN MADRID

FARO DE MONCLOA

TELEFÉRICO DE MADRID (cable car)

MAIN PARKS IN MADRID

PARQUE DEL RETIRO (Retiro Park): This is the main park in the city centre.

MADRID RÍO: It is a new park with many architecture awards because it has changed the whole neighbourhood’s way of life by setting the highways underground.

PARQUE JUAN CARLOS I

PARQUE DEL CAPRICHO

CASA DE CAMPO

PARQUE DEL OESTE: The cable car runs from here.

More information on best parks in Madrid in this link

AMUSEMENT PARKS

PARQUE DE ATRACCIONES

PARQUE WARNER MADRID: There is a train to reach it because it is located 30km outside the city.

ZOOS

ZOO AQUARIUM DE MADRID

FAUNIA (zoo and botanical garden)

MORE FOR KIDS IN MADRID

CASA MUSEO RATÓN PÉREZ (Museum of Perez the Mouse, the Spanish version of the tooth fairy)

MUSEO DEL FERROCARRIL & TREN DE LA FRESA (Madrid Railway Museum & Strawberry Train to Aranjuez)

MUSEO NACIONAL DE CIENCIAS NATURALES (National Museum of Natural History of Spain)

MUSEO DE CERA (Madrid Wax Museum)

PLANETARIO DE MADRID (Madrid Planetarium)

BEST SHOPPING AREAS IN MADRID

CALLE SERRANO + CALLE DE CLAUDIO COELLO + CALLE GOYA

GRAN VIA + CALLE PRECIADOS + CALLE DE LA PRINCESA

CALLE DE ORENSE + AV. DEL GENERAL PERÓN + CALLE DE RAIMUNDO FERNANDEZ VILLAVERDE

EL CORTE INGLÉS (department stores)

LA VAGUADA / PLENILUNIO / GRAN PLAZA (malls)

GOING OUT IN MADRID

JUST WALK AROUND…

CALLE DE LAS HUERTAS & PLAZA DE SANTA ANA

PLAZA MAYOR & CALLE CAVA BAJA & CALLE CAVA ALTA & PLAZA DE LA PAJA

PLAZA CHUECA & CALLE FUENCARRAL

FLAMENCO SHOWS IN MADRID

CORRAL DE LA MORERÍA

CASA PATAS

MAIN CITY FEASTS

CABALGATA DE LOS REYES MAGOS (Three Kings Parade)– JAN 5TH

MADRID CARNIVAL – MID-FEBRUARY

EASTER PARADES – MARCH OR APRIL

SAN ISIDRO FESTIVAL – MAY 15TH

FIESTA NACIONAL DE ESPAÑA (National Day of Spain & Day of the Armed Forces) – OCT 12TH, celebrated with a military parade

DÍA DE LA VIRGEN DE LA ALMUDENA (Feast of Our Lady of Almudena)– NOV 9TH

FIESTA DE LA TRASHUMANCIA (sheep crossing through the city center) – FIRST SUNDAY OF NOVEMBER

BEST RESTAURANTS IN MADRID

MICHELIN STAR RESTAURANTS:

More information on Michelin restaurants in Madrid in this link

Diverxo*** / El Club de Allard** / La Terraza del Casino** / Ramón Freixa** / Santceloni** / Sergi Arola Gastro** / Álbora* / DSTAgE* / Kabuki* / La Cabra* / Lúa* / Punto MX*

MADRID TRADITIONAL CUISINE:

La Bola / Malacatín / El Landó / Lhardy / Casa Lucio / Sobrinos de Botín

WINE EXPERTS:

García de la Navarra / El Ten con Ten / Lavinia / Laredo / Zalacain

MODERN/NEW:

Las tortillas de Gabino (Spanish omelettes) / Poncelet Cheese Bar / La Gastrocroquetería de Chema / El 17 de Moreto / Diurno / La Mucca del Prado / La Gloria de Montera / Bazaar / Maceiras / Cornucopia / Viva la vida (vegetarian)

VEGETARIAN RESTAURANTS IN MADRID

La huerta de Tudela (this has meat & fish also) / El Vegetariano de Teresa / La Isla del Tesoro / El pequeño vegetariano. You can find more information on vegetarian restaurants in Madrid in this link.

REGIONAL GASTRONOMY:

Galician & Seafood: O Grelo / Combarro / O’Pazo

Asturian & Seafood: El Oso / Teitu / Viavélez

Valencian (Paella): El pato mudo / Casa Benigna

Catalan: La huerta de Lleida

Basque:Dantxari / Txistu

RESTAURANT WITH BEST VIEWS OF MADRID:

Volvoreta Restaurant at the top of the Eurostars Madrid Tower Hotel

FOOD AND TAPAS MARKETS IN MADRID

Mercadeo de San Miguel / Platea / StreetXO (Gourmet Experience of Serrano) / Mercado de San Antón / Mercado de San Ildefonso

One of the best ways to enjjoy the Tapas culture is to join a tapas tour in Madrid (liek the one we propose) 

ROOFTOP TERRACES IN MADRID

PALACIO DE CIBELES – Plaza Cibeles, 1 (area: Cibeles)

CIRCULO DE BELLAS ARTES – Calle de Alcalá, 42 (area: Cibeles)

HOTEL ME MADRID REINA VICTORIA – Plaza de Santa Ana, 14 (area: Plaza Santa Ana)

MERCADO SAN ANTÓN – Calle de Augusto Figueroa, 24 (area: Chueca)

GOURMET EXPERIENCE GRAN VÍA – Plaza de Callao, 2 (area: Gran Vía)

GOURMET EXPERIENCE SERRANO – Calle Serrano, 52 (area: Colon)

THE PRINCIPAL MADRID HOTEL – Calle de Marqués de Valdeiglesias, 1 (area: Gran Vía)

BARS FOR HAVING A NICE WINE IN MADRID

You can also find our complete list with a map in this post with traditional bars in Madrid 

MODERN

La Chula de Chamberí – Fernando El Santo, 11 (area: Plaza de Colón)

Orio – Fuencarral, 49 (area: Plaza de Chueca)

Juana la Loca – Plaza Puerta de Moros, 4 (area: La Latina)

Taberna del Chato – Calle de la Cruz, 35 (area: Plaza Santa Ana)

Vadebaco – Campomanes, 6 (area: Ópera)

TRADITIONAL (Some of them are also restaurants)

Stop Madrid – Hortaleza, 11 (area: Chueca)

La Ardosa – Colón, 13 (area: Chueca)

Antigua Casa Angel Sierra – Gravina, 11 (area: Chueca)

Tempranillo – Cava Baja 38 (area: La Latina)

Matritum – Cava Alta, 16 (area: La Latina)

El Aloque – Torrecilla del Leal, 20 (area: Reina Sofía Museum)

La Venencia – Sherry wines – Echegaray, 7 (area: Plaza Santa Ana)

Vinícola Mentridana – San Eugenio, 9 (area: Reina Sofía Museum)

Bodegas Rosell – General Lacy, 14 (area: Reina Sofía Museum)

FOR BEER LOVERS:

Fábrica Maravillas Microbrewery - Valverde St, 29.

La Tape - San Bernardo St, 88

Irreale - Manuela Malasaña St, 20.

BRUNCH

Vailima, Tea Place – Salustiano Olózaga St, 18 (area: Cibeles)

Sandwicheria Magasand – Columela St, 4 (area: Retiro)

Mamá Framboise Pastisserie – Fernando VI, 23 St (area: Chueca)

TRADITIONAL CAFÉ

Café Gijón – Paseo de Recoletos, 21 (area: Cibeles)

Café del Espejo Terrace - Paseo de Recoletos, 31 (area: Colon)

Café de Oriente – Plaza Oriente, 2 (area: Royal Palace)

Café Jazz Populart – Huertas St, 22 (area: Plaza Santa Ana)

OTHER

San Ginés – Pasadizo San Ginés, 5 - Chocolate con churros (area: Plaza Mayor)

Valor – Postigo de San Martin St, 7 - Chocolate con churros (area: Puerta del Sol)

El Madroño – Latoneros St, 10 & Plaza Puerta Cerrada, 7 – Taste or buy licor de madroño (strawberry tree liqueur typical from Madrid)

Juicy Avenue – Preciados St, 33 & Plaza Alonso Martinez, 7 & Fuencarral St, 93 – Juices, Smoothies and Cakes

Acquolina – Velarde St, 17 – Icecream & Horchata

Alboraya – Alcalá St, 125, & Felipe II Av, 26 - Horchata & Agua de Cebada (barley water)

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