Madrid Travel Guide

Credit :

Richard Phibbs

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.


  • For >seafood restaurants in Madrid, visit Nile Guide

Articles about Madrid

Arosa, Switzerland | Durango, Colorado | Venice | Las Vegas | Honduras | Palm Springs | Madrid | Washington, D.C. Address Book PLUS New Year's around the globe, top ice rinks, holiday reflections, great movie theaters, and more. Arosa, Switz...
PARIS Hôtel Prince de Conti 8 Rue Guénégaud, Paris; 800/949-7562 or 33-1/44-07-30-40, fax 33-1/44-07-36-34. Hotel Prince de Condé 39 Rue de Seine, Paris; 800/949-7562 or 33-1/43-26-71-56, fax 33-1/46-34-27-95. Doubles at both hotels from $163. ...
On a recent jaunt through five of Europe’s eating capitals, I’d decided I would engage zero deconstructed asparagus or rearranged pot-au-feu. Instead I would set out across the Continent and England with a simpler goal: I wanted an illusion—at lea...
See our video collection of the World’s Best Holiday Light Displays. Let’s face it: most of the things we love about the winter holidays—the family gatherings, the parties and overindulgent meals, the giving and receiving of gifts—are also pretty...
Q: Can you recommend a stylish, well-priced hotel in Madrid? —Salvador Lopez, Austin, Tex. A: The 102-room De Las Letras H&R (doubles from $223), located on the city’s main thoroughfare, has new parquet floors and a wrought-iron elevator; book ...
Cultural Hit List Art Europe London "Louise Bourgeois," at Tate Modern (Oct. 10–Jan. 20; Surrealist, Expressionist, and conceptual artist Bourgeois is still going strong in her nineties. This show, which spans seven decades of dra...
Spain has declared 1999 "The Year of Velázquez," honoring the 400th anniversary of the painter's birth with a series of celebratory shows. This month in Madrid, the Prado unveils its new Velázquez galleries. In mid-December, again at the Prado, "V...
"We've been found," Jean-Pierre Vandelle explained, with an apologetic lifting of the hands. I had finally gotten back to my favorite little-known restaurant—El Olivo, off the Plaza de Cuzco in Madrid—and encountered teeming masses waiting to samp...
mod in milanAmid the sleek boutiques on Milan's Via della Spiga sits a new mecca for children's clothing made of cashmere and baby alpaca, flocked velvet and silk brocade. This is Pinco Pallino (freely translatable as "whoosiemajibbit"), a near-pe...
At first glance, Madrid remains stubbornly true to itself—a city where patrician señoras nibble on canapes while gleefully watching a torero being gored by a bull, where wood-paneled tascas and tiled bars spin you back to the 19th century, and wh...