After you’ve read our article about important money talks you need to have if you’re a travel junkie, you need to have a look at places you should visit. If you want to visit a capital full of life, Madrid is a perfect choice!
When you’re visiting, though, it can be quite difficult to choose what you want to see as this city has just so much to offer. I’ve been living in Spain’s capital for almost seven months now, so I have collected 5 things you should really not miss in Madrid!
#1 Do a walking tour!
This is the one tip I have for everyone who is visiting Madrid and doesn’t have too much time: Starting in the center (Puerta de Sol and also Plaza Mayor), you can find free walking tours taking you all around Madrid.
On the one hand, most guides know a whole lot about this city and have amazing fun facts to tell you, and on the other hand, walking is in general the best way to get around the city center: The Metro stations are so close to one another that you can easily get from one to another within ten minutes walking and Madrid’s streets and “barrios” (quarter) are so beautiful you have to see them!
#2 Get to know Spanish food!
Don’t stick to pizza, get some Spanish food! If you are looking for a snack, but you don’t want to go to one of the usual fast-food chains, Madrid has a bunch of 100Montaditoz serving “montaditos” (small bread rolls) with everything from tortillas to calamari. If you are going out for dinner, there are many great “sidrerias” which also serve amazing food as well as “tabernas” – my favorite being La Pompeyana which is luckily quite close to Puerta de Sol and offers amazing paella (rice dish).
If you’re going out for some drinks, I advise you to try “tinto de verano” (the combination of red wine with soda might sound odd to some, but it’s one of the best drinks I’ve ever had!), and if you want to have breakfast, you need to try “tortilla de patatas” (the Spanish version of an omelette) as well as “pan con tomate” (bread with a kind of tomato jam).
#3 Enjoy the nature!
While Madrid is quite far away from the sea and therefore can’t fulfill the typical Spanish stereotype of spending a day at the beach, Madrid has great parks to offer: The Parque del Oeste, Casa de Campo, and El Capricho are beautiful, but I would advise you to stick to the one park that draws everyone’s attention: the Retiro! Whether it’s to go for a walk or just to have a coffee, it’s an amazing place. My personal tip: On your way there, take the Metro and get off in Atocha, as the quarter is really pretty and the train station quite impressive.
#4 Go on a one-day-trip!
If you’re spending more than just a few days in Madrid, I advise you strongly to go on a trip! My personal favorite is Toledo, which you can reach in about twenty minutes by train, and which is one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever seen! Other must-see places close by would be Segovia, El Escorial and Aranjuez.
#5 Enjoy the night!
A photo posted by Help Madrid (@help_madrid) on
Madrid is a lively city and so is its nightlife! Many of the Erasmus students I met in Madrid like to say that if you are back before 3 a.m., it’s not considered partying but having a drink or dining, while others also live to say that in Madrid you’re not allowed to have more than one drink in one place, so it’s common to go to various places throughout the night.