We had a long lay over in Madrid on our way through to Berlin, and to make the most of the day, we packed up our bags at the airport and headed out to explore the city for a few hours. Arriving early in Madrid, we were able to grab a quick breakfast before walking around to explore.
With a bit of research, we decided to get a taxi to Federal Cafe, which is located close to the centre of town. It was quite busy when we arrived, but were able to get a beautiful table with bench seating in a large bay window to enjoy the morning sun. The food here is simple, yet tasty with all the typical breakfast staples.
After breakfast we took a stroll through the cobblestone streets just snapping photos as we went. Madrid doesn’t have a shortage of beautiful architecture, fountains and gardens to enjoy. Our first stop on our walk was at the beautiful Plaza de España (Square of Spain), with some of their most photographed fountains (photos below).
Moving on, we walked along Calle de la Princesa checking out all the beautiful old buildings and architecture. The long busy street is filled with shops and restaurants to keep you busy during the day. For those with a bit more time, it’s worth checking out Gran Via as there’s more sites along this street.
On our way back to the airport, we took the scenic route and past some amazing buildings. Plaza de Cibeles (photographed below) has become one of Madrid’s most iconic symbols with one of the most beautiful marble sculptures, complete with intricate fountains.
Our final sight for the day was the beautiful Puerta de Alcalá (Alcalá Gate), located in the Plaza de la Independencia (Independence Square). This national monument (photographed below) is located in the city centre and one of the cities most recognizable monuments.
- Tapas instead of dinner will save you a bit of money if on a budget
- Best tap water in Spain
- If you’re a museum fanatic, you can purchase a ‘Madrid Card‘, which gives you free access to move than 50 museums and monuments, and lets you skip the lines for many attractions.
- Some popular neighbourhoods to check out: Palacio, Sol, La Latina, Lavapiés, Barrio de las Letras, Malasaña, and Chueca
- Weather – Between June-August, temperatures can get up to 95°F to 105°F, very hot & humid
- Best time to visit is Spring (May)