24 hours in madrid
|If you only have one
day to visit Madrid, we recommend you find a space in your diary to come
back again with more time; we promise you that you'll love the city so much
that one day will be far too short. However, if 24 hours is all you can
spare, then you should take a look at this selection of top activities for
the morning, afternoon and evening. Don't try to do them all; just pick the
ones that you most fancy and have fun!
Main entrance of the Prado Museum
Considered by many to be the best art gallery in the world, the
exhibits the old royal collections, including works by such artists as Van
der Weyden, Hieronymus Bosch, Rubens, Fra Angelico, El Greco and Titian.
But what really makes the Prado stand out from all other museums in the
world is its impressive collection of paintings by Velázquez and Goya, the
great masters of the Spanish school.
El Rastro, on Ribera de Curtidores Street
Every Sunday Madrilenians and tourists flock to the city's most popular
and long-established flea market. They say that if you can't find what
you are looking for in
, then it simply does not exist. There are so many things on
sale, from clothes, CDs and books to antiques and old knickknacks, that
we suggest you go there with an open mind, ready to find what you are
not looking for.
Glass Palace at the Retiro Park
Once a space reserved for Spain's royalty, the
is a popular spot among Madrileños
and visitors to the
city. Many come here for sporting activities, to go boating on the
lake, to skate or to relax with a drink in one of the outdoor cafés. A
natural oasis in the heart of the city, it is home to a number of
beautiful pavilions, made of ironwork and glass, which host
exhibitions all year round.
AFTER LUNCH AND A SIESTA
From Plaza Mayor to the Royal Palace
You'll never tire of strolling through Madrid, especially in the Hapsburg
District, filled with palaces and convents dating back to the 17th century
when Madrid was the centre of the Hapsburg Court. Put your map away and
let your senses guide you. You'll wind your way along narrow streets and
stumble upon such treasures as
From Atocha train station to Cuatro Torres Business Area
Avenida de la Castellana runs from the city's main train station in the
centre to the
in the north. The 7-km long avenue is home to
an array of museums and landmarks, including the
, Bank of Spain,
As it is several kilometres long, we suggest you
take a public transport bus, like no. 27, or hop on to route 2 of the
Madrid City Tour.
From Puerta del Sol to Gran Vía
Metrópolis Building, Gran Vía avenue
Take a stroll through Madrid's bustling city centre which plays host to
all kinds of events throughout the year, from concerts and festivals to
the Three Kings Parade and Gay Pride celebrations. Start off at Puerta
del Sol and its Kilometre Zero, continuing up Calle Preciados, which is
packed with shops. At the end of Preciados is
avenue boasting a plethora of cafés, nightclubs, cinemas
ONCE THE SUN SETS
Tapas in the Literary Quarter
Once night falls the city really comes alive. A good place to whet your
appetite is Plaza de Santa Ana, in the Literary Quarter, well known for
its buzzing nightlife. Cafés, restaurants and bars make this area, just a
short walk from Puerta del Sol, one of the liveliest parts of Madrid.
Practice the Spanish verb
hopping between bars with friends, enjoying in each a beer or a glass of
wine and a delicious tapa.
A night out in Malasaña and Chueca
Madrid's legendary nightlife
Since the late 80s, many bars, live music venues and clubs have sprung
up in Malasaña and Chueca, making
amongst the best in the world. After 8pm, thousands of
people emerge from the metro stations of Bilbao, Alonso Martínez, Chueca
and Tribunal, ready for a night on the town. While Malasaña attracts the
independent music crowd,
is the epicentre of the LGBT community.
The art of cocktail making in Madrid
Over 80 years have passed since Perico Chicote opened his
in Gran Vía. Since then the art of mixing drinks has
become increasingly popular in Madrid, with new and creative cocktails
appearing alongside all-time favourites. Step into one of these haunts
to soak up their magical atmosphere and -cocktail in hand- plan your
next trip to the Spanish capital
Our Top 10
TOP 10 SIGHT SEEING
Madrid's most beautiful building, the largest royal palace in Western Europe.
Puerta del Sol.
Madrid's most central and best known square.
Marvellous enclosed square, perfect to sit outside and people watch.
Templo de Debod.
An authentic 2nd Century BC Egyptian temple in the middle of Madrid!
Madrid's largest and most important church.
de la Villa. Incredibly historic square, home to the
15th Century Torre de Lujanes, 16th Century Casa de Cisneros and the 17th
Century Casa de la Villa.
Puerta de Alcalá.
A Madrid icon, this old city gate even has a song dedicated to it!
Madrid's most famous and most central street.
Plaza de Cibeles.
Central square where Real Madrid celebrates championship wins and home to the
Bank of Spain.
Plaza de Oriente.
Beautiful square located in front of the Royal Palace.
TOP 10 THINGS TO DO
Madrid is a stage for some of the best flamenco dancers in the world. Visit a
flamenco restaurant for the perfect night-out.
See a bullfight.
The best bullfighters show off their skills in Spain's capital.
Watch Real Madrid play.
The Santiago Bernabeu Stadium plays host to one of the best football teams in
Take an open-topped bus tour.
See the most important sights and monuments in under 2 hours, enabling you to
choose which to visit later.
Eat at the world's oldest
restaurant. Botin is recognised as such in the
Guinness Book of Records.
Try some tapas.
The quintessential and ubiquitous Spanish food.
a ride on Madrid's cable car. The Teleférico
gives visitors wonderful panoramic views of many of the capital's best sights &
Walk in the Park.
Enjoy the wide open spaces, rose-garden, boating lake, and the wonderful street
theatre at the Retiro Park.
Go to the Rastro.
Madrid's weekly flea market allows you to buy almost anything under the sun!
Try chocolate con churros.
After all the activity above, you'll need to restore your energy with some
chocolate con churros.