Are you looking for the perfect Madrid itinerary? This 3 day Madrid itinerary will help you plan your trip to this beautiful city.
The capital of Spain, one of the most attractive and fascinating cities in Europe, a city that offers a wide range of attractions, sites not to be missed in Madrid, vibrant nightlife, interesting architecture, and a fascinating mix of old and new.
There is plenty to see in Madrid in 3 days, from museums and theaters to famous sites such as the famous Santiago Bernabeu Stadium, Plaza Mayor, and the Royal Palace of Madrid.
If your concern is what to eat in Madrid, know that restaurants in Madrid are considered quality and diverse, and there is a wide range of food markets in Madrid that are considered an experience for every tourist.
Madrid will draw you on a fascinating journey through history between the churches, bridges, and historic sites in Madrid, and on the other hand, it is impossible not to be impressed by the city's innovation and the pulsating and vibrant heart of one of Europe's most beautiful cities.
Madrid is a great city every season. The peak season, as elsewhere in Europe, is July-August, but precisely in these months it is less advisable to arrive because it is very hot, the city is crowded with tourists and prices are higher.
Autumn, September and October, and spring, between March and May, are great seasons to visit in Madrid, and especially in May and October.
During this period the weather is usually quite pleasant, the city is not crowded, and the sights are especially beautiful, with flowering in spring and fall in autumn.
In winter, between November and February, the weather is cold but for the most part, the temperatures do not drop below zero and if you dress accordingly, you can definitely walk the streets. In winter Madrid is emptied of visitors, queues at sites and attractions are short, accommodation prices are falling and shops have special offers.
Madrid Airport is considered to be the largest in the country and one of the busiest and busiest in Europe and around the world. A
s befits a terminal of this size, it has extensive public transportation, which includes dedicated shuttles that carry passengers between the various terminals, and public transportation that includes buses, taxis, trains, and metro (subway).
At the airport, the metro is active from 06:00 in the morning until 02:00 at night.
Boarding line 8 (also marked in pink) at Terminal 2 or 4 will take you quickly to the city center, to Nuevos Ministerios station.
The trip takes 15 minutes with a frequency of five minutes and will cost you 5 euros.
Was and remains one of the most efficient, cheap, and convenient means of getting to and from the airport to central Madrid.
The Spanish railway company RENFE connects Madrid with the airport via the local train line Cercanías-C1.
The train station is located on the 1st floor T4 terminal and is called Aeropuerto T4. To move to other terminals there is a shuttle service that connects the terminals.
The price for a single trip is 2.6 euros and is valid for about two hours (a round-trip ticket will cost 5.2 euros, but the return card must be used until the next day). The frequency of trains ranges from 15-20 minutes.
A bus is also a not bad and relatively fast option for getting out of the airport, which operates 24 hours a day.
The bus company Exprés Aeropuerto (Airport Express) operates the operating hours during all hours of the day (every 15 minutes) and at night (every 35 minutes) with only three stops after the field at the stations: O’Donnell, Plaza de Cibeles, Atocha so That the journey lasts a maximum of 40 minutes. The bus stops are at the terminals: T1, T2, T4
The trip costs five euros and can be paid to the driver directly, which means there is no need to purchase tickets at the box office.
On the bus, you can also buy a metro ticket so you can get to the hotel quickly and easily.
For those of you who like to be prepared in advance, you can order a shuttle taxi from home, in a vehicle with up to seven seats that the driver will pick you up from the entrance hall and take you to any destination you want. The price for such a four-seater taxi will cost you 35 euros.
A taxi is still the convenient way to get to your destination door, provided you book it in advance.
Although you leave the terminals there are taxi stations around the clock and the travel time ranges from 20-30 minutes.
If you catch a taxi, make sure the driver is operating the meter and avoid the taxi offers that drivers offer you inside the terminal.
The price of the trip can reach up to 30 euros to any major place in the city, depending on the traffic situation.
Madrid is a city that is largely explored on foot.
Walking between the various tourist attractions, while looking at the beautiful buildings, is an integral part of the trip experience.
As mentioned, the more central your hotel is the less you will have to wander around.
On the other hand, even so, Madrid's tourist sites are not necessarily close to each other.
Meaning: You will probably find yourself traveling on Madrid's public transport more than once during the trip.
Metro - Many know the most convenient way to get around Madrid.
The subway in Madrid is well networked, the lines are relatively fast and the operating hours suit the needs of most travelers.
Prices depend on the specific itinerary, with some multi-trip tickets discounting the picture.
Buses - The buses in Madrid are operated by the EMT company, which offers about 100 active lines from early morning until evening.
The rates are similar to those of the metro.
Disadvantages: The lines are considered less efficient than the metro lines. In addition, they are exposed to the traffic jams that characterize Madrid for quite a few hours.
Train - Madrid has a "regular" train infrastructure, which is mostly operated by Renfe.
These trains are usually used to make the journey from Madrid to other destinations in Spain, whether as part of excursions (Toledo or Segovia for example) or as part of a comprehensive trip in several cities: Barcelona, Valencia, southern cities and so on.
Trains can also be used to reach the suburbs of Madrid, although we will not usually use them to travel in Madrid itself.
Cons: Low availability, lack of coverage of the city itself.
Taxis - Taxi services in Madrid are available and offered at reasonable prices compared to other places in the world. It is a relatively easy way to get to any point in the city, even if the other public transport infrastructure does not cover it.
Disadvantages: Taxi prices are still significantly more expensive than Madrid's other means of public transport. In addition, taxi drivers do not always speak English and can not always avoid traffic jams.
A tourist city like Madrid has a huge variety of hotels of all kinds.
Keep in mind that most tourists do not come to visit Madrid to lie back in the hotel but to explore the city, so you do not usually need luxurious hotels.
In fact, most of Madrid's hotels are also at a basic level, although you will find hotels that differ in their level here or there.
One of the major decisions you need to make is the accommodation area of Madrid.
The rule of thumb in the city, which should not surprise anyone who has been to another European tourist city in the past, is that the price of hotels and the demand for them increases as the hotel is located in a more central area.
In the case of Madrid, the more expensive areas will be the heart of the old city - hotels located in or near the squares of Mayor and Puerta del Sol will come with a higher price tag.
Room Mate Alba - Do not let the name fool you, "Room Mate" hotels have nothing to do with shared apartments or roommates.
These are hotels for everything, in a modern and luxurious design. There are four hotels in Madrid, all four in a great location.
Vincci The Mint - A boutique hotel, only 88 rooms, located on the main boulevard Gran Via, simple and cool design.
The hotel has a beautifully designed and chic terrace, where you can drink and eat and enjoy the views of Madrid.
NH Collection Madrid Gran Vía - A boutique hotel, 94 rooms in a central location.
The rooms are decorated in a modern and contemporary design with a Nespresso machine in each room.
The hotel has a rooftop terrace overlooking the streets of Madrid.
In the pleasant months of April-October, you can sit down to eat and drink from the delicacies of Spanish cuisine.
Hotel Indigo Madrid - Located on Gran Via.
IHG hotels known for their beautiful design with boutique hotels in several places in Europe.
On the roof floor of the hotel there is a pool with city views.
*Puerta del Sol
*Mercado San Miguel
*Royal Palace of Madrid
*Catedral de la Almudena
*Basilica of San Francesco d'Assisi
The first day is dedicated to the most famous places in Madrid that are a must see, especially if this is your first time in Madrid.
You can walk around Madrid on foot, but there is a cool way to see the city center.
You can join a guided tour that will take you by Electric Tuk-Tuk which passes through the highlights in Madrid.
Puerta del Sol
A famous square with a lively atmosphere, street artists, shops and a number of important sculptures.
At one end of the square is the statue of the bear eating from the fruit tree, considered a symbol of Madrid.
In the center of the square is a statue of King Carlos III, who built it.
You will also find here the "kilometer zero" sign, which marks the center of the Spanish road network.
This is the starting point of measuring all the highways. In 2000, a Spanish film called "Kilometer 0" was produced, in which the characters usually set a meeting point in this place.
You will easily recognize this point if you arrive at the square during daylight hours as there are almost always tourists taking pictures with this point.
A square located in the heart of Madrid and considered a place that everyone passes by at least several times during their stay in the city.
Plaza Mayor was built in the 17th century by King Philip III, whose statue is located in its center.
It is a very lively place, with many cafes around (prices are expensive), stalls, and a classic Spanish atmosphere.
The place becomes a prominent entertainment center in the city at night.
A powerful statue of King Felipe III made of bronze is a symbol of the centrality of the square for years and the long history that has passed since it became a central square in Madrid.
Just as in the old days when the Plaza Mayor was a center of attraction, today it is also a center of attraction for locals and tourists alike.
Mercado San Miguel
The San Miguel Market is right next to the Plaza Mayor, the nearest metro station is the Opera.
Due to its super central location, it is crowded almost at all hours of the day and night.
It is recommended not to reach it during lunch or dinner but between busy times or after them as it is really impossible to move inside during rush hours.
At the same time that the market is crowded, it still maintains a very high level of service and the quality of the dishes in it is wonderful.
Its prices are the most favorable among the markets.
About 2-3 euros for tapas and there are also specials where they give you a small cardboard tray and load it with tapas that you take to the eating areas.
It is important to keep the receipt given to you when buying the tapas as it allows free admission to the clean public toilets of the complex.
Royal Palace of Madrid (Palacio Real de Madrid)
This palace is the largest building in Madrid and even the largest royal palace in Western Europe.
Palacio Real was built for King Felipe V and has about 2,800 rooms and a large courtyard in front of the building.
The facade of the palace is adorned with spectacular murals and carvings and ceramics.
In the magnificent palace, it is possible to take a guided tour and it is even recommended to do so, so as not to get lost among the many rooms.
Catedral de la Almudena
Madrid Cathedral stands next to the Royal Palace on Bailen Street. It is the seat of the Catholic Archbishop of Madrid.
The capital of Spain was Toledo until 1561 when King Filipe II declared Madrid the new capital.
The new capital needed a large place for worship and construction of the cathedral began in 1879, on the site of what was once the first mosque of Madrid.
The cathedral is dedicated and named after Santa Maria de la Almudena, the patron saint of Madrid.
The Gothic Revival structure was designed by Francisco de Cubas but after a halt in construction during the country's Civil War, the design was taken by Fernando Chueca who added the Baroque exterior design.
Finally, the cathedral was completed in 1993. The height of the beautiful church is 104 meters and its width is 76 meters.
There is an underground room in the Neo-Romanesque style, where you can see a picture from the 16th century of the Virgin Almudena.
Visitors can see the mosaics in the church hall and in the Chapter Hall. You can go up to the dome of the church and enjoy the view all over the city.
The interior of the church is illuminated with bright bursts of color. Relative to other churches in Europe, the cathedral is quite modern and has too few decorations.
Among the modern elements of the church interior, you will find sculptures by contemporary artists and stained glass windows attributed to a pop art style. On the outside of the cathedral, you can see a statue of Pope John Paul II, who consecrated the cathedral.
The cathedral has a museum, where you can learn about the history of the building and the bishops of Madrid.
Basilica of San Francesco d'Assisi
The Basilica of St. Francis the Great was built in 1760, during the reign of Carlos III.
The location of the cathedral is considered to be the place where St. Francis himself established a Franciscan monastery in 1217.
The Catholic Church is located in the La Latina neighborhood and overlooks the Plaza de San Francisco.
The cathedral, designed in this neoclassical style, was designed by Francisco Cabeza, but was later developed by Antonio Plo and was completed under Francesco Sabatini.
The impressive structure is 33 meters wide and 58 meters high, making it the fourth-largest structure in the world and the largest in Spain.
Inside the dome, there are amazing murals (frescoes) and at the base of the dome - wooden sculptures of the 12 apostles.
The interior of the nave is round and is surrounded by chapels that are each more beautiful than the other.
Each chapel is decorated in a different style, but the most prominent is the Chapel of San Bernardino de Siena, where you can see murals of Goya.
One of the figures in the mural is considered a self-portrait of the artist.
*Museo Nacional del Prado
*Parque del Buen Retiro
*Puerta de Alcala
The Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum is one of the most important art galleries in Madrid.
The museum is a rib of the Golden Triangle of Art, along with the Prado Museum (Prado Museum) and the Reina Sofia Museum (Reina Sofia Museum).
The museum began in 1920, as a private art collection of Baron Heinren Thyssen-Bornemisa, who was a well-known art collector.
This collection is considered one of the most impressive private collections in the world.
Thyssen-Bornmisa's son continues his father's work, saying that he marries Carmen Cerbera, she joins him in the art collection and is the one in charge of presenting the collection at the museum.
In 1992 the museum opened and Baroness Cerbera played a large part in its opening - she is responsible for the interior design and preservation of the museum as well as her own collection of works.
The collection began in the early 20th century when Thyssen the Elder acquired works from the 14th and 15th centuries and continued when the son's product continued to be purchased in the 19th and 20th centuries.
The museum has works from different periods (from the Middle Ages to the 20th century) and different styles such as Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque, Neoclassical, Realism, Impressionism, Post-Impressionism, Expressionism, Avant-Garde, Surrealism, and Pop. The work of many good artists is displayed here in the museum - Raphael, El Greco, Rembrandt, Mona, Picasso, Van Gogh, Matisse, and more.
Museo Nacional del Prado
The Prado Museum is one of the most important museums in the world and is one of the main attractions provided by the city of Madrid.
It attracts art lovers from all over the world thanks to the expensive collection and variety of works it offers.
The central museum building, also called the Milanova Building, is interesting in itself.
The Prado's dimensions and plans were originally designed as a history museum and approved in 1785 by King Charles III who knew exactly how he wanted his museum to be - magnificent and eye-popping properly for the Museum of Empire in the process of growth. Therefore, the building was luxuriously designed, with a spacious entrance hall, a central gallery full of natural light, and a unique cube space at each end of the building.
The walls and the shape of the building were of course designed in the neoclassical style that characterizes Madrid.
Please note: It is better to buy an entrance ticket to the museum in advance, so you do not have to wait in line.
You can buy an entrance ticket or a ticket with a guided tour.
The collection of the Prado Museum is among the largest in the world. It contains 9,000 pictures, 5,000 paintings, 2,000 prints, 1,000 coins and medals and about 2,000 artefacts.
The Prado boasts a world-class collection of Spanish art, with countless examples of the works of Allegro, Valquez, Goya, and Morillo.
Visitors can also view a fine collection of works by Flemish painter Peter Raoul Rubens, and Dutch painter Hieronymus Bosch, as well as a number of Italian masterpieces.
Because the collection is so large, only a seventh of the total works in it are displayed to visitors at any given time, in the museum's permanent and rotating exhibitions.
Parque del Buen Retiro
Parque del Buen Retiro is the largest and most beautiful public park in Madrid.
Located close to the Alcala Gate and the Prado Museum.
The park was established as a private garden and opened to the public in 1868. In the heart of the park is a large artificial lake - Astank del Retiro.
You can rent rowing boats and sail on the lake.
Next to the lake is a large statue of King Alfonso VII riding on his horse and overlooking the lake.
In the spring and summer months, performances and performances take place here.
As part of an international exhibition held in the park in 1887, the Palacio del Cristal Crystal Palace was established on the shores of the lake.
The building is made entirely of glass and was formerly used as a greenhouse for special plants and birds. In the 20th century, it was converted into a hostel for temporary exhibitions of the Queen Sofia Center for the Arts.
The park has a lovely rose garden called Rosalda and also has a statue dedicated to the devil probably the only one in Europe.
On Sundays, the park is flooded with families and children.
The children enjoy riding on rollerblades and rollerblades while the parents enjoy the cafes scattered in the area.
Parque del Buen Retiro is Open in summer from 6:00 to 24:00 and in winter from 6:00 to 23:00
Puerta de Alcala
The Puerta de Alcala (Alcala Gate) is a monument located in the Plaza de la Independencia in Madrid.
The gate was built in 1778 by King Carlos III, and for a long time served as a road to the nearby Aia Alcala de Anares.
In 1823 the gate was damaged by shrapnel during the Spanish Civil War. The fragments can be seen on the gate to this day.
You can end the day on Gran Via Street.
It is one of the main streets of Madrid, packed with hotels, cinemas, and tourist sites.
The bustling street is also considered one of the most important shopping malls; But what makes it truly special is the spectacular architecture of the large buildings located along with it, the central bank, the livelihood palace, the Spanish telecommunications company building, and more.
The street begins on Calle de Alcala and ends at Piazza de Spain, located between two skyscrapers. From here, the road becomes Calle de Princessa.
*El Rastro Market
*Santiago Bernabéu Stadium
*Temple of Debod
El Rastro Market
"El Rastro" is in Madrid's well-known and well-visited flea market, which takes place every Sunday and is spread over several streets and squares in the La Latina neighborhood in the city center.
The market has a wide range of new and used products, from art to food, and next to it are a number of shops that specialize in antiques, which also open during market days.
Among the products offered in the market, he did not find paintings and handicrafts, clothing and fashion accessories, books, collectibles, and souvenirs.
It is worth remembering that bargaining over prices is acceptable in the famous market, unlike in many other places in Spain.
At the flea market, has a large number of people walking around the market stalls.
Keep in mind that the visiting crowd draws many pickpockets to the area every Sunday.
Take the necessary safety precautions to avoid the disappearance of your wallet and avoid carrying valuables that are easily accessible (with an emphasis on passports!).
The market is only open on Sundays from 10 in the morning and starts closing towards 14:30, plan your visit correctly if you want to see it in full action.
A visit to the Santiago Bernabéu Stadium
The Santiago Bernabéu Stadium in Madrid is home to the famous Real Madrid football team, which is considered one of the best and most famous teams in the world, and during the day, is also a popular and highly sought-after tourist attraction among many tourists who come to Madrid.
It is a magnificent and prestigious stadium, the second-largest in Spain and one of the largest in Europe, which has hosted the most prestigious football matches in the world such as the Champions Cup final, the World Cup final, and the Euro Championship final. He has also hosted the Spanish Cup final many times.
The Santiago Bernabeu is one of the most popular sites in Madrid and is recommended not only for fans of the team or fans of the football game.
Its location may require a drive from the city center but it is usually worth it.
Those interested in visiting the stadium only do not need to book tickets in advance most of the year except summer - so there may be queues at the box office for this attraction.
For visitors to the stadium, please note that entry is only possible one and a half to two hours before the game.
On game days it is not recommended to visit the museum as it closes early - six hours before the start of the game.
Tickets for Real Madrid games can be purchased in the city of Madrid, at the stadium box office, or by pre-booking online on the team website when there are tickets left after subscribers and club members have finished booking their tickets for the game.
You can buy the real madrid products in the club's store in the stadium - usually, the most expensive place to buy these souvenirs in the city - those who want to save should buy them at one of the million stalls in the city.
When I visited Madrid I had the privilege of seeing the biggest game in the world, the El Clasico between Real Madrid and Barcelona at the home stadium of Real Madrid the Santiago Bernabeu in full capacity.
Even for those who do not like football, it is a great once-in-a-lifetime experience that cannot be explained in words.
The power of so many people cheering on their team and for me personally as a Real Madrid fan it was a particularly amazing experience.
For such a game it is mandatory to book a ticket well in advance so that you can enjoy one of the biggest games in the world.
Temple of Debod
The Temple of Debod is an ancient Egyptian temple that was copied to Madrid.
The building is one of the few examples of ancient Egyptian architecture displayed outside of the successful and is the only one of its kind in Spain.
The temple was originally built about 15 miles south of Aswan, in southern Egypt.
In 1960, following the start of the construction of the Aswan Dam and the danger posed by archeological sites in the area, UNESCO sought international help in rescuing the rich historical heritage. In a public park in Madrid near the Royal Palace, and opened to the public.
Admission to the temple is free.
Malasaña - the wonderful district of Madrid
The Malasaña neighborhood is next to the Chueca, Madrid's Pride neighborhood. Most often, the names of the two quarters are said in one breath: "Chueca-Malasaña".
This neighborhood is considered one of the most bohemian and alternative quarters of Madrid, along with the Lavapies district. Areas of the district are extensions: Gran Via, Poincaré, San Bernardo, Cranza.
The former name of the district was the "Barrio de las Maravillas".
The district of Malasania is also officially called the "Universidad" district (el Barrio de Universidad), which makes it a district with three different names.
The center of "Malasaña" is the square of May 2 (Plaza dos de Mayo). On May 2, 1808, Madrid was surrounded and besieged by French forces led by Napoleon.
The people of Madrid rose up as Napoleon's vow, started a revolt, and fought with all their might. The revolt broke outright in this square. Goya's paintings, "May 2" and "May 3," were influenced by this revolution. Many young people fought in the revolt.
One of the young women was Manuela Malasania. Manuela was a young seamstress, who was arrested and executed for carrying scissors, which the French said were weapons. The district of Malasaña got its name in her memory.
The district of Malasaña excels in its coexistence.
During the day you can walk the streets with the elderly of the area and enjoy coffee in a vintage-style cafe or a good meal in one of the many restaurants.
In the evening, people of all kinds can be found on the streets of the district, from businessmen to students.
At night, the district changes its face and becomes lively, full of nightclubs and bars, where it is customary to meet all the specials and people of Madrid, especially musicians and artists.
It is one of the classic areas for spending an evening in Madrid.
1/ Most of Madrid's attractions can be seen within 2-4 days. Some people find this to be enough. Others, on the other hand, are interested in making the trip more relaxed, exploring different places in the city (the squares, markets, parks, and more). Therefore the trip can be extended.
In my opinion, in 3-4 days in Madrid the city can be exhausted.
On longer trips I recommend you combine one or two trips for day trips in the vicinity of Madrid: Toledo, Segovia, and so on.
2/ Special Events - Madrid is packed with events, gigs, and festivals. It is advisable to find out at the time of your arrival in the city if any performance that speaks to you is expected. Of course, Real Madrid football games also come into the picture.
You can schedule the trip according to them.
3/ English - Many Madrid residents do not speak English, even at the most basic level.
You can walk around the city with a guidebook or a tourist guide that will make it easier to get around. An English map, distributed in most hotels, can do the job.
4/ VAT refund - An option that many are not aware of is to receive VAT refunds on purchases made in Madrid.
The refund is only for items whose prices exceed 90 euros.
Make sure the seller in the store fills out the relevant form (VIA) for you and take it to the customs counter at Madrid Airport for your flight back home.
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