2 days in Madrid, Spain

Madrid is the capital of Spain. It is known for it’s New Years celebrations. 48 hours is never enough in any city, but here’s what to see in Madrid, the city that “really knows how to live”!

Top places to visit

Puerta del Sol and Plaza Mayor

Located at the heart of Madrid, Puerta del Sol is the best place to start exploring Madrid. It is very popular with tourists and locals alike and a good spot to people-watch over coffee and cake.

The Tio Pete billboard proudly still stands, while the brand no longer exists!
The Tio Pete billboard proudly still stands, while the brand no longer exists!
The bear and the strawberry tree- the symbol of Madrid
The bear and the strawberry tree- the symbol of Madrid

Sol is also the location for the famous new years eve celebrations. Read more about NYE in Madrid here.

New year's eve celebrations at Puerta del Sol, Madrid
New year’s eve celebrations at Puerta del Sol, Madrid

Plaza Mayor lies to the West of Sol was originally the market place for the town with farmers, butchers selling their local produce. Now it is a busy square with restaurants and apartments that can be rented.

 

Cathedral de La Almudena, Palacio Real and Jardines Sabatini

Not one of the spectacular cathedrals in Europe, the Almudena cathedral is still worth a quick visit when in Madrid. Also, it is a short walk from Palacio Real which, with its sprawling grounds is definitely impressive.

Almudena cathedral, Madrid
Almudena cathedral, Madrid
Palacio Real and its sprawling grounds, Madrid
Palacio Real and its sprawling grounds, Madrid
Not quite Versailles, but pretty Jardines Sabatini
Not quite Versailles, but pretty Jardines Sabatini

The crypts, which lie a block away from the cathedral are definitely worth a visit- walk around and admire the intricate sculptures on each pillar- every pillar top is different, and marvel at the tombs along the floor.

Don Quixote statue at Plaza Espana

We learnt a lot about Don Quixote and his exploits (as described by (Miguel de Cervantes) during our visit to Madrid. While Quixotic was something we’d heard of before, the real meaning only was revealed during this trip. His larger than life statue in Plaza Espana definitely helped heighten the intrigue!

Egyptian temple Debod

While highly unexpected in the center of a bustling city like Madrid, the Egyptian temple provides a uniquely peaceful spot, and since it is at a height, the views of the city, from  around the area, are quite pretty!

 

Shopping along the swanky Gran Via

While we aren’t shoppers and normally prefer not to waste time shopping, especially when on holiday, the ubiquitous shops along Gran Via called out to us too and we ended up with a couple of shopping bags of our own too!

Saturated with sight-seeing, we now move onto another extremely important and fun aspect of most of our trips- food and drink!

Tapas crawl in La Latina neighborhood

 

There was so much to eat and drink in Madrid, we have an entire post dedicated exclusively to it. Read all about our culinary adventures in Madrid here.

Madrid, we’ll be back!

While we were (mistakenly) convinced that Barcelona was likely our favorite city in Spain and we really liked the people, food and the city, our trip to the north of the country, Toledo, Granada and Madrid convinced us that it is the entire country and its people that we are in love with!

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