Visit Madrid through the eyes of a city native.The visitor can enjoy discovering the many Madrid attractions during a mini break, Spain vacation, flying visit, holiday or romantic break in Spain?
Its all possible! If you are planning your Madrid trip be sure to browse both our great travel tips and compare hotels pricesin Madrid to save you money, time and effort whilst here.
DO and SEE
Art Galleries & Museums
Madrid is considered one of the top European destinations concerning art museums. Best known is the Golden Triangle of Art, located along the Paseo del Prado and comprising three museums. The most famous one is the Prado Museum, the most popular Golden Triangle of Art member known for such highlights as Diego Velázquez's Las Meninas and Francisco de Goya's La maja vestida and La maja desnuda. The other two museums are the Thyssen Bornemisza Museum, established from a mixed private collection, and the Reina Sofia Museum, where Pablo Picasso's Guernica hangs, returning to Spain from New York after more than two decades.
Museo del Prado
The Museo del Prado is a museum and art gallery that features one of the world's finest collections of European art, from the 12th century to the early 19th century, based on the former Spanish Royal Collection. The collection currently comprises around 7,600 paintings, 1,000 sculptures, 4,800 prints and 8,200 drawings, in addition to a large number of works of art and historic documents. El Prado is one of the most visited museums in the world, and it is considered to be among the greatest museums of art. It has the best collection of artworks by Goya, Velazquez, El Greco, Rubens, Titian, Hieronymus Bosch, José de Ribera and Patinir; and works by Rogier van der Weyden,Raphael, Caravaggio, Van Dyck, Albrecht Dürer, Claude Lorrain, Murillo and Zurbarán, among others.
The Reina Sofia Museum
It is the Spain's national museum of 20th century art. The museum is mainly dedicated to Spanish art. Highlights of the museum include excellent collections of Spain's greatest 20th century masters, Pablo Picasso,Salvador Dalí, Joan Miró, Juan Gris and Julio Gonzalez. Certainly the most famous masterpiece in the museum is Picasso's painting Guernica. The Reina Sofía also hosts a free-access library specializing in art, with a collection of over 100,000 books, over 3,500 sound recordings and almost 1,000 videos.
The Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum is an art museum that fills the historical gaps in its counterparts' collections: in the Prado's case this includes Italian primitives and works from the English, Dutch and German schools, while in the case of the Reina Sofia the Thyssen-Bornemisza collection, once the second largest private collection in the world after the British Royal Collection, includes Impressionists, Expressionists, and European and American paintings from the second half of the 20th century, with over 1,600 paintings.
Shop Madrid at your leisure knowing that with this handy guide you will not miss a thing! Shopping in Madrid explained for all. From Stamps to Souvenirs, it is all here!
Behind the famous Siesta shopping comes a close second in the list of priorities for Madrilenos (after all you have to look the part when you go out to eat at least three times a week!) Top fashion labels as well as independent designers means there are a number of Madrid stores where that "unique" item can be had.
For those looking for cheap and cheerful souvenirs there are many options in either Europes largest Sunday market or one of the many tourist stores in the city centre.
Every Sunday morning the streets of Barrio La Latina are taken over by thousands of people as the whole area is transformed into Europes biggest outdoor market. El rastro is where small businesses, maket stalls and anyone with a table or suitcase come to sell just about anything!
Clothes, souvenirs, electrical goods, football jerseys, paintings and even medieval chastity belts are among the offerings. Its almost as if the accumulated wealth of the country is up for sale every week!
Shop Madrid recommends a visit even if you have no intention of purchasing anything!
Spanish towns and villages love their markets and in Madrid the only difference is the sheer variety of markets on offer. From the Madrid stamp market held in the historic setting underneath the arches of Plaza Mayor, to the fresh seafood on offer at one of the local fish markets there is something for everyone! Shop Madrid in those places that the guide books do not list and grab yourself a bargain!
Madrid restaurant guide brings together the combined dining experience of over forty different Madrileños and their opinions on the best restaurants in Madrid. With diverse palates amongst the contributers you can expect to find something to suit every taste and wallet!
Before going any further its worth considering two very important points regarding dining out in Madrid:
• It’s cheap and
• It’s a national obsession
Finding a cheap restaurant in Madrid is not difficult and furthermore the quality of ingedients is always to a very high standard... after all Spain was the "garden of the Roman empire" and nowadays the pick of Spanish produce winds up on the tables of Madrids restaurants.
To make things easy and to ensure the visitor is not overwhelmed with choice the Madrid restaurant guide has broken down into seven distinct "flavours" the options available for the discerning dinner:
• Traditional Spanish restaurants
• Seafood restaurants
• Oriental restaurants
• Vegeterian restaurants
• Speciality restaurants
• Theme restaurants
• Cheap eats
One thing is for sure, in Madrid’s restaurants you´ll never go hungry!
Travel to Madrid
Grab yourself a great bargain ticket to Madrid or simply consult what airlines fly where from Madrid. Of course there is also a feature on Madrid airport and travelling to and from it!
Madrid’s airport, Barajas, is a little over ten kilometers northeast of the city. The cheapest way to get to Madrid is by metro: line 8 goes to Nuevos Ministerios. Journey time: 30 minutes. The taxi ride costs about €20 (more at nights and on Sundays) and takes 30-60 minutes.
Welcome to the walkers city. Getting around Madrid is a lot simpler than similar sized cities with traditional extra wide boardwalks. Furthermore the excellent clean and on-time public transport makes sightseeing from one of the many city buses a real possibility!
The ever expanding Madrid Metro/Subway/Underground system (depending on your particular origin), is a cheap and flexible way to move quickly between the many different city attractions. Open 365 days a year from 0600 to 0200 you can effectively have an evening meal and drinks before returning on the Metro.
Madrid has an excellent network of bus routes serving it and its regions. Intercity and International links are maintained with modern coaches departing from the same stations. With the same cheap pricing system as the metro this provides a great way to see the city when its not too hot (Mid June to Early Sept).
Safe 24hr Buses mean that even the nightowls amongst you are catered for! Buses are of course subject to the Madrid traffic conditions.
Madrid Cercanias - Regional trains
Cheap, clean and serving those destinations up to 100kms away as well as criss crossing the city of Madrid itself the Madrid Cercanias is a tourists saviour!
Does anyone ever have anything good to say about taxi drivers? One of lifes necessary evils I guess. Thankfully in Madrid the taxis are registered to the city and must display fares as well as surcharges. Generally very easy to use and certainly available at every hour of the day.
Madrid Car Hire
Whilst moving around Madrid is both simple and cheap with Public transport there is a possible need for a hire car if you are considering some of the excursions away from the city. With rates starting at less than 10€ a day if you are more then two people a rental car can save you money as well as allowing you to govern the stops along the route!