‘Spain’s culture capital’
Geographically, Spain’s two major cities, Madrid and Barcelona, sit only 300 miles apart. The distance between them comes culturally, they are contrasting siblings with completely different characters.
Beyond its sporting excellence thanks to its two major football clubs Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid, it’s a city best known for its creativity. Tourists interested in art and its long, storied history, will find themselves almost overwhelmed with choices when it comes to sightseeing.
Most will go head straight to Prado to see its collection of Spanish art or to tour the Thyssen-Bornemisza collection, which features 800 years of work. Anyone interested in modern art too will be in left in awe of the Reina Sofia Museum, which houses Picasso’s ‘Guernica’.
But it’s not just a city for art lovers. Madrid is a city that runs at a slower pace than the other major European capitals. Late lunches and relaxing dinners are commonplace, meaning the city is full of life well into the night when the ambient temperature cools off. Areas like the Puerta del Sol are a perfect example of this, a square that is a shoppers paradise by day and a food and party lovers’ hotspot by night.
Architecturally much of Madrid’s major buildings were constructed in the past century, but there is plenty of history to discover here. The Royal Palace, which began construction in the 18th century, is one of many must-see attractions, as is the Sobrino de Botin, which is believed to be the world’s oldest restaurant, with over 250 years of service under its belt.
- A visit to the Royal Palace
- An afternoon spent shopping at the Puerta del Sol
- Sampling wine and tapas a the Plaza Mayor
- A stroll through Retiro Park
- Visiting Las Ventas, Spain’s largest bullring
Choose to include:
- Return flights
- Hotel accommodation
- Tickets to local attractions
- Airport transfers
- Hire car