Welcome to Madrid- the capital and crowned jewel of Spain. Known for its cultural and artistic heritage, Madrid is a "have it all" city, where you can do so much and come back for more. It makes a great excuse to get a;cheap flight to Madrid this fall to explore the many sights, museums and to be a part of a rich and long lasting culture.
Think back to your European History class and try to recall how strong Spain was as a country throughout the centuries. It's no wonder why the Royal Palace is one of the biggest and most prestigious in Europe. Take a tour through this beautiful building that is usually used for state ceremonies. You will be impressed by the architecture and the views on the River Valley.
A Flamenco Show
If there is something that is ultimately synonymous with Madrid, it has to be flamenco. This precise, yet lovely Spanish folk dance gets its roots from Southern Spain, but Madrid is the place to catch a world renowned show. Flamenco performances include the romantic sounds of the guitar, the precise "Claps" of the palmas and bold outfits to keep your eyes on the show. A trip to Madrid without a Flamenco show in your program is like not visiting Madrid at all.
The Prado Museum
Madrid is similar to Amsterdam with its museum district. Here you will find some of the finest art museums, including the Museo del Prado. This includes collections from some of the greatest artists from Spain, like El Greco and Goya. But, you'll find the international collection just as outstanding; it's like a trip to many European museums. This is your “must” museum in Madrid.
Europe and especially Spain is famous for having large Plazas that are used in many ways. It's often a cultural landmark with sculptures, fine architecture or a major commuting zone. The Plaza Mayor is all this and more. It was originally built inside of the city walls where bullfights, markets and even executions occurred. Today, you'll find modern restaurants, shops and bistros to pass the time. This large and beautiful Plaza is quintessentially the essence of Spain.
What is it about Europeans and their splendid ability to enjoy leisure time? Especially the Spaniards with their "siestas" or naps during mid-day. Look no further than the Retiro Park to rest after a full day of sightseeing. You can surely get your people watching on here as Spaniards flock here during all times of the day. You can also find a monument to pay respect that is dedicated to the victims of the Madrid 3/11 terrorist attacks.
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Photo credit: ferlomu