Madrid is grand and vibrant. It has everything you would expect from the capital of Spain: baroque landmarks, acclaimed contemporary architecture, fine art, majestic gardens and fantastic food.
Get your bearings on your first day by taking in the city’s two famous plazas, the Plaza Mayor and the Puerta del Sol, which are just a few blocks apart from one another.
The Palacio Real (Royal Palace) is one of the finest in Europe. A wonderful way to see the palace is to get off at Opera metro station and walk from there (around 5 minutes). Most of the walk is actually traversing the Plaza Oriente, a tranquil plaza with beautiful landscaped gardens and sculptures.
A few days should be set aside for Madrid’s museum district, named the “Golden Triangle of Art” for the hat trick of important art institutions clustered together. The Museo del Prado houses some of the world’s most famous artists, the Museo Reina Sofia is Spain’s national museum and the Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza is a fantastic historic collection.