As Spain’s capital and one of the most exciting cities in the world, Madrid travel is a must-do for the determined traveler. The city is teeming with art, culture, unique cuisine, history, music and everything in between. Creative types will love the city’s world-renowned museums and galleries while nightlife enthusiasts and gastronomes may find themselves overwhelmed by all the great restaurants and bars the city has to offer. Travel to Madrid to see it’s gorgeous architecture and plazas, many of which were constructed during the 16th and 17th centuries, and its lovely avenues and thoroughfares. See why those who visit Madrid can’t get enough of this bustling Spanish city. Let Travel + Leisure’s Madrid travel guide lead the way.
Things Not to Miss in Madrid
• Tour the museums in the Golden Triangle of Art: The Prado, The Reina Sofia, and the Thyssen-Bornemisza
• See the prestigious Real Madrid football club play at Santiago Bernabéu Stadium
• Admire the Royal Botanical Gardens, home to 20 acres of flora and fauna
• Take in the Plaza de Cibeles, an area filled with neoclassical sculptures and architectures
• Stroll through the unforgettable Plaza Mayor and admire its many frescos and ochre apartment buildings
• Grab a drink at Museo Chicote, a favorite drinking hole of Hemingway and Sinatra
• Visit San Nicolas de los Servitas, a Catholic church dating back to the 13th century
• Explore the artsy Malasaña neighborhood for a taste of local nightlife
• Catch a classical music concert at the Auditorio Nacional de Música or see an opera performance at Teatro Real
• If visiting between March and October, see live bullfighting at Las Ventas, Spain’s largest bullring
When to Go to Madrid
Though Madrid is miles away from the sea, the city experiences a Mediterranean climate, which means warm, humid summers and mild winters. Accordingly, the best time of year to visit the city is spring to early summer or during the fall when days are most comfortable, and the hot 90-degree days of a typical Madrilenian summer can be avoided.
Watching the world go by from one of Madrid’s famed rooftop terrazas (terraces)—the city has hundreds: on rooftops, in courtyards, even in the middle of avenues.
Gazing at Picasso’s Guernica—perhaps the world’s most celebrated antiwar painting—at the Reina Sofía.
Eating your entire meal standing up at a tapas bar in La Latina.