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Fascinating Things To Do And See In Madrid

9 mins. read

Madrid is the capital of Spain, known for its vibrant city life, mouthwatering tapas, and bustling street scenes. While it may not offer beachfront views like Barcelona or Valencia, Madrid compensates with its rich culture and genuine charm. Spend some time here losing yourself in the local lifestyle, lingering on restaurant terraces, discovering captivating markets, and visiting some of the most well-known art galleries globally. Uncover the great things to do in Madrid which is one of the best cities in Spain with this thorough guide.

Things to Do in Madrid

Madrid, the largest city in Spain, boasts a captivating blend of old and new architecture. Similar to other major Spanish cities, it offers exceptional cuisine, intriguing historical landmarks, and a wealth of activities. The city's vibrant energy is reflected in the relaxed lifestyle of its people, with lunch starting around 3 PM, nightlife beginning at 12 AM, and sleep often delayed until sunrise. Without delay, here are some remarkable things to do and experience in Madrid.

  1. Visit the Royal Palace (PALACIO REAL)
  2. Take a Stroll In And Around the Royal Botanical Garden
  3. Go and Visit the Atocha-Renfe Station
  4. Explore the Madrid Cathedral
  5. Learn the Traditional Dance Style - Flamenco
  6. See the Palacio de Cristal in Madrid
  7. Plaza Mayor
  8. Spend some Quality time in the Barrio de La Latina
  9. Wander the Mercado de San Miguel

Visit the Royal Palace (PALACIO REAL)

King Phillip V commissioned the grandest building in Madrid, the Palacio Real. This impressive palace boasts over 3,000 rooms and is commonly regarded as the largest royal palace in Europe. Covering more than 135,000 square feet, it serves as the official residence of the Spanish royal family. The palace is adorned with masterpieces by renowned artists like Caravaggio, Goya, and Velázquez, making it one of the best things to see in Madrid for visitors. One of its highlights is a lavishly decorated room where the king holds his audience, featuring a vaulted ceiling adorned with a breathtaking fresco portraying the royal family through allegorical figures.

Take a Stroll In And Around the Royal Botanical Garden

There are numerous things to do in Madrid, Spain but you shouldn't miss visiting the Royal Botanical Garden for some peaceful time. Established in 1755, the Royal Botanical Garden boasts a picturesque landscape featuring lakes, labyrinths, squares, fountains, and a plethora of vibrant flowers. Housing over 5,000 plant and tree species across four terraces, alongside greenhouses, sculptures, and meticulously tended gardens, the garden offers a tranquil and stunningly beautiful environment.

Go and Visit the Atocha-Renfe Station

Atocha Station is quite extraordinary among train stations worldwide. It's not just a place to catch your next train; it houses a remarkable tropical garden that's a sight to behold. The station's interior is transformed by a vast array of unique plants and trees that grow nearly to the top of the roof arch. This jungle-like feature amidst industrial surroundings makes Atocha Station one of the most distinctive things to see in Madrid. The botanical gardens boast over 7000 plants from various corners of the globe, including Asia, South America, and Australia. Visitors can explore and learn more about each plant thanks to informative signs.

Explore the Madrid Cathedral

Madrid Cathedral

The main cathedral in Madrid, the Catedral de la Almudena, was inaugurated in 1993 after more than a century of construction. Its name, Almudena, originates from the Arabic term al-madinat, meaning "the little city" or "citadel," and it is the name used by Madrileños to honour the Virgin Mary. Mary, also known as the Virgin of Almudena, is revered as the patron saint of Madrid. Designed in the Gothic Revival style, the cathedral is believed to have been built on the grounds of a mediaeval mosque, and it offers stunning panoramic views of the city.  So don't miss to add this place to your list of things to see and do in Madrid.

Learn the Traditional Dance Style - Flamenco

Another fun stuff to do in Madrid is learn Flamenco. Flamenco is a traditional dance form originating in Spain, characterised by its energetic and expressive style, featuring intricate footwork and hand movements. In Madrid, there are several affordable classes available for beginners to learn the fundamentals: Amor de Dios, El Patio and Dance Classes Madrid. For those interested in watching a performance, notable venues to consider include Las Carboneras, Corral de la Morería and Torres Bermejas. Typically, tickets for performances range from 20-35 EUR, while classes are priced at 15-30 EUR per hour.

See the Palacio de Cristal in Madrid

Situated in the heart of El Retiro Park, the Palacio de Cristal, also known as the glass palace, takes the shape of a Greek cross and stands at a majestic height of 22 metres, offering breathtaking views over the surrounding water and lush horse chestnut trees. During the fall season, the vibrant reds and oranges of the foliage create a mesmerising sight. Originally serving as a greenhouse for diverse flora and fauna, the palace is now under the ownership of the Reina Sofia Museum, which utilises it as a distinctive venue for hosting art exhibitions throughout the year.

The best part? Entry is free, making it one of the fantastic things to see in Madrid, Spain. Visitors are captivated by the beautiful ceramic tile flooring and the exquisite glass and cast iron framework supporting the structure. Afterwards, one can relax on the delightful steps leading from the Palace to the lake, soaking in the tranquil ambience.

Plaza Mayor

Plaza Mayor, the magnificent central square of Madrid, stands as the oldest section of the city and serves as the perfect focal point for orienting oneself while exploring the area. Following a devastating fire in 1790, the square was reconstructed with a design focused on architectural symmetry, resulting in a consistently grand ambience. Surrounding the square, cafes offer picturesque views from shaded arcades, and the area serves as a bustling hub for tourists, with an array of souvenir vendors. It is one of the things to do when in Madrid, Spain as visitors can enjoy the vibrant atmosphere created by street performers, artists, occasional outdoor concerts, and parades. Notable highlights of the square include the Arco de Cuchilleros, the most imposing of the nine arches leading to the square, and the impressive Statue of Philip III, crafted by the Flemish sculptor Giambologna.

Spend Some Quality Time in the Barrio de La Latina

The neighbourhood of La Latina in Madrid is ideal for an immersive exploration on foot. Its lively atmosphere is characterised by a network of winding alleys and streets, brimming with a multitude of tapas bars, restaurants, and cantinas. Noteworthy attractions in the area include the San Francisco el Grande Basilica and the Moorish San Pedro el Real church, both of which are highly recommended for a visit. If your visit happens to fall on a Sunday, be sure to browse the diverse offerings at the El Rastro flea market, which hosts numerous food stalls. Definitely not to be missed among the things to do when in Madrid, Spain.

Wander the Mercado de San Miguel

Located in close proximity to the Plaza Mayor, this expansive covered market was the first of its kind in Madrid, focusing on gourmet offerings. Its doors first opened in 1916 but over time, the market fell into a state of disrepair. However, it has since been renovated and now hosts over 20 remarkable restaurants and food stalls. Visitors can explore a plethora of dining options, where affordable tapas and beverages are readily available. The market is particularly favoured among the after-work crowd due to its popularity. Definitely an enjoyable stuff to do when in Madrid, Spain.

Whether you're a food enthusiast, a history aficionado, a night owl seeking vibrant nightlife, or a traveller eager to immerse in rich culture, Madrid promises to exceed your expectations. It pulsates with energy and allure, and this collection of fun stuff to see in Madrid ensures that you can fully experience the city's dynamic atmosphere and make the most of your visit to this exceptional destination on your package holidays to Spain!

November 18, 2023

Author

Veena World
Veena World

We are an Indian travel company founded in 2013 and excel at domestic and international tour packages including guided group tours, specialty tours, customized holidays, corporate MICE travel, inbound travel and destination weddings.

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