The Spanish capital and its alleys and squares hides gems of history, tradition and culture, while its people welcome you with a smile. Welcome to Madrid, Spain’s amazing capital! The history of the city is just as magical as the city itself!
Places you MUST see:
Get in the cultural zone!
Taking a journey back in me in Madrid you will discover amazing pieces of world history as well as Spanish history. Knowing that Madrid was a cultural capital through the years, you will find amazing cultural treasures in its museums, such as paintings, statues and more. So, once you arrive and relax a bit at your hotel, we suggest you take a walk to the following historic places
• Puerta del Sol: A meeting point for all tourists and locals and it is the starting point of the city centre. In the city’s main square you can find the famous clock, with its bells that mark the annual New Year celebrations. The bell ringing accompanies the traditional eating of 12 grapes. When the clock strikes midnight at New Year, it is a tradition to eat one grape for each ring of the bell. This represents prosperity.
• Plaza Mayor: Located near Puerta del Sol, Plaza de Mayor is a historic square where many events take place, as well as many celebrations. We suggest to drink your coffee in one of the many cafes before you head down to visit other sites.
• Royal Palace: The official residence of the King of Spain which is now used for state ceremonies. Built in 1931, its glory is preserved, while its architecture is spectacular.
• Museo Nacional del Prado: The main national art museum of Spain. The museum hosts the artwork of many famous painters such as Van Gogh, Goya, El Greco and many more. It is definitely worth a visit!
• Gran Via: The shopping street of Madrid. Have a walk all the way and find the best deals and what suits you the most from the Spanish fashion industry.
• Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina So a: One of the most impressive museums of Madrid. It includes the collections of Spain’s two greatest 20th-century masters, Pablo Picasso and Salvador Dalí. Certainly, the most famous masterpiece in the museum is Picasso’s pain ng Guernica. It also hosts a free-access art library, with a collection of over 100,000 books, over 3,500 sound recordings, and almost 1,000 videos.
• Buen Retiro Park: One of the largest parks of Madrid, and a place for rest and picnics for the locals and tourists alike. The park is full of ponds, artificial lakes and interesting statues, and is highly recommended for a relaxing walk with the family. Check out the various activities that take place in the park and in its buildings throughout the year.
• Temple of Debod: An ancient Egyptian temple which was dismantled and rebuilt in Madrid. You will find it at the Parque del Oeste, near the Royal Palace and its architecture is quite amazing.
Madrid means food!
Of course, when you visit a new city, you cannot leave without indulging yourself in the local cuisine! And thankfully, Madrid (and Spain in general) has a lot to offer, when it comes to food. Eating tapas is a must in the city and for that reason, we suggest to visit the Market of San Miguel where you can eat some of the most delicious food in town. Usually, when you order a Cerveza (tap beer in Spanish), the bar offers you a variety of tapas.
Madrid, like every city in Spain, has its own dishes. We suggest you should try the following dishes:
• Cocidomadrileño: A popular beef-and-vegetable stew with chickpeas, beef, vegetables, and sausage.
• Callos a la madrileña: This dish is made with chorizo, sausage, sweet paprika, and lamb tripe.
• Oreja a la plancha: A grilled ear of pork (!) with a dis nc ve taste, accompanied with different kinds of sauce: garlic (al ajillo), spicy, Basque-style (a la vizcaína) sauce etc.
• Gallinejas: A dish consisting of fried sheep intestines.
• Gambas al ajillo and setas al ajillo: As the name reveals, we are talking about prawns with garlic and/or mushrooms. You must taste them when they are hot and usually it is a popular meal option.
• Bocadillo de calamares: Fried squid rings with a sauce for side dish. You can find it literally in every bar.
• Patatas bravas: Another popular tapas dish which you can find in any bar. It includes irregularly-cut fried potatoes covered in a spicy tomato sauce.
• Huevos estrellados: Fried eggs in olive oil served with fried potatoes (diced or sliced, French fries or potato chips) and o en with sliced meat (usually ham or bacon) or sausage (typically chorizo or “chistorra”).
Knowledge and Family fun!
The city is not only a place for adults but it also has many attractions for the toddlers, no matter the age. From thematic parks to interactive games, Madrid has everything a child would want to have a great me! Here’s our suggestions for quality me with your family:
• Parque Warner Madrid: Bugs Bunny, Duffy Duck and all the Looney Tunes heroes are just about 20Km away from Madrid. Jump on a roller coaster, go to Duffy Duck’s dressing room and take a photo with Tweety and make the day the most memorable one.
• Faunia: A huge nature park with thousands of animals of all types, has recreated eight of the world’s eco-systems within this park. A visit to the rainforest will astound you with rare coloured animals and rep les, and there are some areas where you can feed the animals.
• Parque de Atracciones: This thematic park has over 30 attractions for both children and adults. From frightening fast rollercoasters to exciting thematic rides and to a 4D cinema, you can have a great day at the park with your family.
• Zoo Aquarium: A great nature park with many fish and sea animals. It currently hosts 6,000 animals from 500 different species, such as the koala, the anteater and the panda. Don’t miss the show with the dolphins.
• Natural Science Museum: An amazing museum with specimens from extinct animals. The site has three zones, one on natural history, one on the Mediterranean Sea and one a reproduction of the old Royal Cabinet of Natural History. The kids love the interactive games that help them learn more about the natural science.
• Aquópolis: Madrid’s most famous waterpark with slides for everyone, no matter the age. During summer, it is very crowded as it is a favourite place for locals and tourists.