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Tripguru Guide for Madrid

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24 hours in Madrid

created by martin_F on 2015-07-06

24 hours in Madrid

Madrid is not only a famous business hub, but also a city of great art and vibrant (night) life. Here are some recommendations to help you get the most out of your precious time in the city.

Let's assume you arrive on a Sunday morning. You've already made the right decision, as Sunday is the best day to get to know the city! Visit the Rastro, Madrid's biggest flea market, where every week thousands and thousands of locals turn up in search of a bargain or just to browse the stands.

Your next stop will be the Plaza Mayor, the tourist center of Madrid, where bullfights used to take place. But what you'll find there today is mainly overpriced restaurants and gift shops. Not to worry, as there's no need to buy anything; you can just watch the jugglers and street musicians or hang out at the foot of the equestrian statue of Philipp III.

The Plaza de Oriente is another very fancy spot; however, if you decide to go "underground" (take the stairs for the underground car park, and make a right on the parking level), you'll see how the plaza got its name. Here you can find the ruins of an Islamic guard tower from the 11th century - one of the few remnants of Madrid's Moorish past.

An hour-long tour through the royal palace you will show you what baroque splendor means. After this visual overkill, head for the Templo de Debod, which is thousands of years older and Madrid's oldest building. It is an authentic Egyptian temple built in honor of the gods Amun and Isis. The best area for lunch (and a siesta) is definitely Madrid de los Austrias, a district which owes its unofficial name to the Hapsburgs, who with Charles V acceded to the Spanish throne in the 16th century. What they left behind had more of an imperial splendor than a savory snacks direction. Nevertheless, here you'll find the Taberna Almendro 13, one of the classics among Madrid’s tapas bars.

A visit to Madrid without experiencing its art and museums would definitely be a waste of time. The "Centro de Arte Reina Sofia" plays host to modern Spanish art and is a highly recommended alternative to Madrid's premium attraction, the Museo del Prado. However, there is almost no way to avoid the Prado, as it is quite simply a must-see attraction. But don't even attempt to take in the complete collection (as it is just not doable in a day). Just make sure you see the most outstanding artworks, such as Velazquez's enigmatic "Las Meninas".

Don't forget to take a short walk through the Retiro Park and stop at Fuente de la Cibeles - a fountain where people like to have a dip at the feet of the fertility goddess after one of the local football clubs (usually Real Madrid) has won a game.

Your next move is a headlong jump into the notorious nightlife. The first stop of your club tour is El Junco, probably the best jazz club in the city, followed by the boozy and popular Huertas district. At the end of your night / trip, a culinary delight awaits you: churros (Spanish doughnut) with a cup of melted chocolate at the Chocolateria San Gines.
  • 1
    Rastro

    43 votes

    sight

    A stroll through Madrid's colourful and chaotic flea market is simply a must. On Sunday mornings, ...

  • 2
    Plaza Mayor

    117 votes

    sight

    Harmony in a square. On Madrid's "main square", time passes more slowly than elsewhere in the city...

  • 3
    Plaza de Oriente

    21 votes

    sight

    An elegant square, as one would expect in the direct vicinity of the Palacio Real, with equally e...

  • 4
    Palacio Real

    70 votes

    sight

    A royal residence. In the mid 18th century Italian architects were commissioned to built Philip V ...

  • 5
    Templo de Debod

    30 votes

    sight

    The temple in honour of the Gods Amun and Isis is the oldest building in Madrid. The Egyptian gov...

  • 6
    Taberna Almendro 13

    12 votes

    bar

    Traditional tapas served in a traditional quarter. A classic institution in Madrid de los Austrias...

  • 7
    Centro de Arte Reina Sofía

    42 votes

    museum / gallery

    An imposing setting for contemporary art featuring Picasso's "Guernica". One of the most important...

  • 8
    Museo Nacional del Prado

    93 votes

    museum / gallery

    One of the world's most important picture galleries. The architect Juan de Villanueva started buil...

  • 9
    Fuente de la Cibeles

    53 votes

    sight

    The plaza is a crossroads where the twelve-lane Calle de Alcalá meets the equally wide Paseo de R...

  • 10
    El Junco

    7 votes

    bar

    Popular jazz club with live acts everyday. DJs after the concerts until early in the morning.

  • 11
    Huertas

    19 votes

    neighborhood

    The district for party people, day and night. Southeast of the Puerta del Sol is Huertas, the main...

  • 12
    Chocolatería San Ginés

    47 votes

    café

    A Madrid tradition: churros and chocolate in the heart of the city. A night-time ritual: first go ...

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comments on 24 hours in Madrid

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  • Lavapies wandelt sich aufgrund der etwas niedrigeren Mietpriese als in der Umgebung Madrids vom Immigrantenviertel zum Boehemeviertel. Zur Zeit mischen sich Nordafrikaner, Chinesen, Inder, Latinos und Spanier mit all Ihren verschiedenen Art und Weise zu Leben. Diverse Kleinteather, Teatherakademien (wie auch das Tomatenteather (La Kartasis del Tomatazo) bei dem das Publikum bei Missgefallen einfach Tomaten auf die Schauspieler wirft) geben dem kulturellen Oesterreicher einen schoenen flair. In Calle Lavapies kann man zu super Preisen indisch Essen, keine Sorge du kannst bei den Lokalen ohne eine Platz angeboten zu bekommen nicht vorbei. Auf plaza Lavapies hoert man anstaendig "haschi" nein es handelt sich um kein Mikroklima wohin sich die Menschen vor der Hitze fluechten und sich Verschnupfen. Mit diesen Niessern wird dir Haschisch und sonsitige Substanzen angeboten. Es gibt dann auch noch ein paar gehobene Bars und Kneipen (am Dach der UNED) wie auch sehr guenstige und Alternative/AnarchistischeLokalitaeten. Letzter sind eventuell jetzt weniger besucht weil deren Klientel auf der Plaza de Sol protestiert/abhaengt und schlaeft. All jene die die Museen oder Plaza auslassen weil diese zu touristisch sind: Willkommen in lavapies!!!
    a couple of years ago report abuse

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