It's hard to know which way to take Madrid because there's so much to see and do! Go as you wish or prepare your itinerary carefully, you will enjoy yourself. Honour to the monarchy: you can visit the Royal Palace, the majestic residence of the monarchs. To find your way around, the centre of Madrid is the Puerta del Sol, where the main streets of the capital converge. You will enjoy a concentration of artistic treasures on the wide Paseo del arte: for less than a kilometre you will cross the Prado, the Thyssen-Bornemisza, the Reina Sofía, among other essential buildings. There is also the Plaza Mayor, in the heart of the Austrias district, a majestic Habsburg porticoed square, and the Cibeles fountain, the city's emblem. Madrid is suitable for families. Faunia Wildlife Park with four ecosystems featuring 4,000 animals from all continents. The immense Casa de Campo offers attractions for everyone: a zoo, the cable car linking the Parc del Oeste on the other side of the river, an exhibition centre, the Venta del Batán where the young bulls are kept before the bullfight in the Las Ventas arenas. But you won't have really enjoyed Madrid without following a gourmet itinerary, from the market lair to the best restaurants. Try the flavours of the sea and the land, while learning about the variety and quality of wines offered by Spain, not to mention tapas. Finally Madrid is also a celebration! There are plenty of opportunities and addresses to plan fun evenings.
When to go to Madrid?
Madrid attracts tourists all year round. To enjoy a mild and sunny climate, choose Easter and September. Winter in Madrid is quite pleasant, as the cold remains dry and sunny. In summer, temperatures rarely drop below 26°C, even at night. When there is wind, it is generally refreshing, especially if it comes from the northern mountains. And let us not forget that Madrid is the highest capital in Europe, at an altitude of 667 metres. Madrid lives to the rhythm of its festivals! The patron saints of the neighbourhoods give rise to spectacular religious parades. In summer, the many villages around Madrid celebrate their patron saint for almost a week. On this occasion, the inhabitants parade behind the Virgins, bullfights are organised and balls close the evening. The atmosphere is warm, the generations mix... Ask the Guía de Fiestas calendar in the Comunidad de Madrid at the Madrid Community Tourist Office. The months of April, May, June, September and October remain the most pleasant months for the climate.
During Holy Week (Easter), processions of virgins multiply. This is a typical Spanish ritual not to be missed. However, if you are not afraid of the (very) heavy heat of the Madrid summer, take advantage of this season's low prices to mingle with the population during the neighbourhood festivals in July and August. In addition, in summer, the locals go on holiday, and the city is yours! Finally, winter, striking but bearable, offers another facet of the capital in December: the enchantment of Navidad. The illuminations are spread all over the city and give it a Christmas story look. The Suma Flamenca, a flamenco festival in June or the jazz festival in autumn can also be an attraction.