While Madrid may be the Spanish capital, it often loses out in the minds of visitors when compared to the charm of Barcelona. But, Madrid definitely should not be missed if you’re looking to soak up all the Spanish culture…and try all the tapas!
If you are visiting Spain, then there are plenty of things to see and do in Madrid.
Madrid is a beautiful and cultured city with stunning architecture, beautiful parks and some of the best art museums in Europe.
This cosmopolitan and capital city has contemporary and historic attractions galore and is packed with character on every street corner.
Verity’s wheels have ground to a halt at Camping Arco Iris (N40.380990 W3.907060) on the edge of the city, At €30 plus a night this is without doubt,one of the places that on ACSI discount card comes into its own as it massively reduces the cost !
However, in common with most cities, the choice of where to stay in a motorhome is not great, we choose this one based on others reviews and can turly say that we were not disapointed, a great little site, a friendly bar/restaurant and clean warm showers – what more could you ask ?
So we believe that this is by far the best place to stay when you visit Madrid in a motorhome.
The travel from the campsite into the centre of Madrid old town took about 40 minutes and required two buses – but thanks to the amazingly efficent spainish public transport system only cost about Eur 7 each !
Here are ‘Our Leap of Faith’ top things to see and do in Madrid!
Puerta del Sol
While the Plaza Mayor may be the most famous square in Madrid, the Puerta del Sol is the busiest and most interesting square to visit! As it’s one of the main transport hubs, it’s definitely bustling but there’s a great open space as well.
There are a series of interesting statues and public artworks on display in this particular square, and the former Post Office now serves as the offices of the president.
This is the ideal place to take a seat, enjoy a coffee, and watch as the people of Madrid go about their daily business. Plus there’s a alot of stunning architectural delights all around the square!
A feast for you eyes!
Enjoy Churros y Chocolate at San Genes
this is probaly the most famous of places in the whole of Madrid!
it would be a crime not to stop by …..
Imagine if you will Spanish hot chocolate is thick, creamy, gloopy and sweet…put together with churros (a sort of long fried doughnut) and you have an irresistible combination of deliciousness!
San Gines is absolutely the only place to go in Madrid for churros y chocolate.
Just off the Puerta del Sol, this is a five minute walk to the Royal Palace; why not enjoy a traditional Spanish breakfast before your visit?
Visit the Royal Palace
We loved the Royal Palace for the history, the baroque and neoclassical architecture and the stunning views across the gardens to the campo beyond.
This is the largest royal palace in Europe with 135,000 square metres of floor space and 3,418 rooms so there is loads to see.
The gardens are also beautiful and well worth a stroll around, on a warm sunny day you could easily pass a few hours just enjoying the grounds of this amazing palace.
Visit the Catedral de la Almudena
Facing on to a broad open square, this grand cathedral is one of the most ornately decorated structures in the city, along with being one of the largest cathedrals in Europe.
The work of building the cathedral took over a century—from the day the broke ground to its consecration in 1993.
The most interesting thing?
You can see a variety of artistic styles throughout the interior!
Mercado de San Miguel
The Mercado de San Miguel is one of the most beautiful food markets I’ve seen in all my travels!
Locals and tourists alike pack into the market to sample the delicious tastes of Madrid.
The atmosphere is alive and the food and wine delicious but it is not cheap to eat here and it’s probably a bit of a tourist trap but we loved it all the same!
This has to be the Lunch stop of choice, grab a few Tapa and Beer and kick back and watch the world go by !
Shop on the Gran Vìa
Gran Vìa is Madrid’s premier shopping street, lined with boutiques, chain stores, Bars cafes and restaurants.
The Gran Vìa is alive and buzzing almost 24 hours a day; locals and tourists alike come here to socialise and shop.
By night, clubs and bars open their doors and people throng onto the street creating a party atmosphere.
If you only stop at one store, make it the Primark – yes honestly forget the jumble sale version the uk has offered up, this a chic store spred over 5 floors with more secuirty guards than you can imagine.
Another of Madrid’s “musts”, Plaza Mayor is a handsome renaissance square, laid out in the early-1600s and completely sequestered by historic three-storey-high residential buildings.
There are nine entrances to the square and within the porticoes at the bottom of the buildings are several cafes.
Order a coffee (overpriced but necessary because of the location!) at an outdoor table and watch Madrid in action for a few minutes.
Remeber to look up !
After that you could wander up to the 400-year-old bronze statue of King Philip III, who was in power at the height of the Spanish empire.
Ps. this is a deffo city for a short break!