The long sunny days are coming, and with them hundreds of ideas for enjoying the city over the next few months Why not take a break in either of these fascinating cities and enjoy them to the hilt. Exhibitions, concerts, new spaces and guided tours are all waiting for you... Rediscover the pleasure of outdoor life again.
The time for visiting parks, gardens and terrace cafés
Make the most of the great weather to venture into the most well-known green spaces of both cities. In the case of Madrid it’s always a pleasure to visit El Retiro Park, awarded the World Heritage designation by the UNESCO along with the Paseo del Prado. In fact, this area is known as the ‘Landscape of Light’. The name says it all, right? Also not to be missed at this time of year is the Royal Botanical Garden.In the case of Barcelona, be sure to make time for a visit to Park Güell in spring. And if cycling is your thing, then why not do the Montjuïc Bike Tour which covers the green lungs of the city.Now that the good weather is here, you can enjoy some al fresco dining. In Madrid you can enjoy a brunch on a sophisticated hotel terrace or lunch in a museum courtyard, such as the one at the Reina Sofía or at a restaurant with views of monuments like the Puerta de Alcalá. In Barcelona you can enjoy having a glass of vermouth in an iconic square or a dinner with views of the sea.
New spaces waiting to be discovered
On your next trip to Madrid why not take a trip around the remodelled Plaza de España square from where you can take a car-free stroll to the Royal Palace of the Temple of Debod. A great idea to enjoy the area in all its splendour. Visit the roof terraces of some of the hotels around the square. You will have a lovely time with fantastic views.Talking of views... Did you know that there’s a new viewing point in Barcelona? It’s in the iconic Torre Glòries building. It stands 140 metres high. What’s more, inside there is an art, music and technology exhibition space, where you can see a sculpture by Tomas Saraceno suspended at the top of the tower. To explore the lesser known spots of Madrid and Barcelona, why not sign up to one of the original guided tours or their experiences and tours.
Immerse yourself in art
If you want to take the opportunity to see an interesting exhibition during your break, there are various options you can choose from. The MAD (Madrid Digital Arts) Immersive Experiences Centre has just opened in Madrid, where you can experience all type of sensations with the exhibition “Klimt. The immersive experience”. Other interesting exhibitions on in the Spanish capital include: “American Art from the Thyssen Collection”, the international photography festival “PhotoEspaña” (with different venues) and the exhibition “Cómic. Sueños e historia” (Comics, dreams and history) at the CaixaForum. Spring is also loaded with art in Barcelona. Picasso’s Blue Period awaits you at his museum with an exhibition about this period. And the Museu Nacional d´Art de Catalunya (MNAC) is paying tribute to Wiliam Turner.
Shall we go to a festival?
It can’t be the first time that a concert by your favourite band gives you the perfect opportunity to visit another city. Make a note in your diary because over the next few months in Madrid you can see The Rolling Stones, James Blunt, Foo Fighters or Alicia Keys. And who is on in Barcelona? Red Hot Chili Peppers, Iron Maiden and The Cure. If you are looking for a great festival, in Madrid you can choose between the Festival of Urban Trends Mulafest, the veranos de la Villa summer festival, Botanical Nights or the Mad Cool Festival (with bands like Metallica). And if you’re in the mood for a great musical, you have all these to choose from. In Barcelona festival fans also have a great choice of events: Sónar, Primavera Sound, Cruïlla, Grec… And if you are looking for an idyllic setting, there's nothing quite like the Festival Jardins de Pedralbes set in the gardens of the Pedralbes Palace. There are other cultural offerings apart from music, such as the famous International Fantastic Film Festival of Catalonia or Comic Barcelona
Around 15 May the people of Madrid celebrate their most important festival: San Isidro. Experience the tradition in the popular green space known as ‘la pradera’, where you can buy different types of rosquillas (a local doughnut), attend concerts, and basically have a great time! On 23 April Barcelona celebrates its famous Sant Jordi (St George's Day) festival, which is also Book Day, which is why the city centre is converted into a massive outdoor book shop with a fantastic atmosphere. Experience it first hand with a literary tour or by visiting the impressive rose garden in Cervantes Park.
A great sporting event
Madrid has been named World Capital of Sport for 2022 With a title like this you can imagine the number of events it will be hosting this year: the X-Trial World Championship, the Madrid Marathon, the World Badminton Championship, the Madrid Open, the WACT/Europe Silver Madrid Athletics Meeting…Want some more thrilling sports events? The Barcelona Marathon or the Formula 1 Pirelli Spanish Grand Prix. And naturally, in both cities you can attend world class football matches. If you like the sound of the activities going on in both cities, visit them both! They are perfectly connected by plane and high-speed train (AVE), which links both cities in two and a half hours. Now it’s time to get excited about everything that’s going on over the next few months.