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Tourists looking at a map of Madrid by the Prado Museum

A city break in Madrid: spend a weekend getting to know Spain's capital

Madrid

Take a stroll in the Retiro Park, have an aperitif in La Latina district or visit a museum. Even if you only have 48 hours in Madrid, you can see the most important sights and have some incredible experiences. Grab a pen and paper and start to plan your short trip to the Spanish capital.

First of all, don’t get overwhelmed. Madrid is a very big city, but there are some must-sees that you can cross off your list on a first visit. Why not start the day with chocolate con churros for breakfast?Some of the country's best museums are located in the “Art Triangle”: the Prado Museum, the Thyssen-Bornemisza National Museum, and the Reina Sofía National Art Centre, or "El Reina", as the locals call it. Next, go for a stroll in the Retiro Park or the Royal Botanical Gardens.When it's time for an aperitif, why not try a traditional bar in the Lavapiés or Chamberí districts – Calle Ponzano perhaps. And tuck into a bocadillo de calamares, a tasty sandwich of fried squid rings. 

Top left: Puerta del Sol square. Top right: Café at the Reina Sofía Museum. Below: Crystal Palace in El Retiro Park.

In the afternoon why not explore the Austrias district and discover Plaza Mayor, Puerta del Sol where you'll see the statue of the Bear and the Strawberry Tree (the symbol of Madrid), Plaza de Cibeles and Almudena Cathedral.In the evening, sip a cocktail while you enjoy the views of the city from the rooftop terrace of the Círculo de Bellas Artes. Later, you could go for tapas and beers in the central district of Las Letras.These are just some of the best-known places, and they'll give you a feel for the city. Madrid is the perfect place for a city break at any time of year, so what are you waiting for?

Top left: Almudena Cathedral. Top right: Cibeles fountain. Below: Traditional bars in Las Letras district
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