Madrid is one of the most beautiful cities in the world and it has everything: nightlife, culture, historical monuments, museums and magnificent cuisine. It is difficult to point out only a few must-see places, but from among endless possibilities we have chosen 4 absolutely essential.
1. The Retiro ParkRetiro Park - José Luis Vega / Flickr.com
It is a magnificent green area where you will enjoy a beautiful natural environment. And best of all, it is in the heart of the city. There are 118 hectares of groves and gardens in the middle of one of the largest capitals in the world.
This park was created during the reign of Philip IV in the seventeenth century. It is currently the favorite place of Madrid to relax outdoors during the week and, above all, the holidays.
In this park you can do many activities. You can go on a picnic with your family or friends, navigate in its beautiful pond or take a walk and get lost in its recesses and hiding places. It is also an ideal place to practice sports.
2. The National Prado Museum
You can't mention Madrid without associating it with the Prado Museum. This is one of the most important museums in the world. It was created thanks to the collector's taste of the Spanish monarchs and today it has wonderful collections and hundreds of works by great European painters from the 16th to the 19th centuries.
This museum is a mandatory stop when you visit Madrid. Here you will contemplate magnificent works by Goya, el Greco, Velázquez or Rubens, among many others. If you love painting this museum will excite you, but it is impossible to explore it in a single day.
«In the Prado Museum, I have run, I have flown, what else? I have ridden, I have gone to war, I have died, I have risen to heaven, I have seen the light. »
And if you are one of those who appreciate the painting of any era and style remember that just a few steps from the Prado you have two other wonderful museums: the Thyssen and the Reina Sofía Art Center
3. The Plaza de CibelesCibeles Fountain - Carlos Cabrera / Flickr.com
This is another of the emblematic corners of the city of Madrid. In the Plaza de Cibeles is the iconic city symbol fountain. It was created in 1782 thanks to the design of one of the most important architects of the time, Ventura Rodríguez.
Two sculptors were responsible for shaping the fountain: Francisco Gutierrez Arribas made the figure of the car and the goddess, while Roberto de Michel was responsible for making the lions.
Four important buildings surround the Plaza de la Cibeles: The Linares Palace, the Bank of Spain, the Buenavista Palace and the Telecommunications Palace. The square and its fountain represent one of the most beautiful places in Madrid to visit and also photograph. If you stand right in front of the statue of the goddess, you will contemplate another of Madrid's emblems, Puerta de Alcalá.
4. The Royal TheaterRoyal Theater image courtesy of Razor 73 / Flickr
This is the opera house in Madrid, located in the historic center of the city, in front of the Royal Palace. It was built on the initiative of Queen Elizabeth II of Bourbon (1883-1868) in order to have a place to receive his court.
The design of the Teatro Real was in charge of the architects Custodio Moreno and Antonio López Aguado. For its interior decoration there were works by artists such as Tegeo, Lucar and Bravo. It was inaugurated on October 10, 1850 on the occasion of the Queen's birthday, with the representation of Donizetti's work The favourite.
It is possible to visit this theater every day, Guided tours are made in different languages such as Spanish, French, German and English and their duration is 50 minutes. You will have the opportunity to admire a great theater with magnificent halls. The visit also includes different rehearsal rooms, the beautiful dressing rooms, the peal box and the imposing stage.
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What we have shown you they are just some of the most beautiful places in the capital of Spain, but there are many others: the Plaza Mayor, the Royal Palace, the Puerta del Sol… Madrid is an incredible city that you have to discover little by little, we invite you to do so.