Day 1 in Madrid
Visit Plaza Mayor – this plaza has been used for a wide variety of purposes since 1577: market, bullfighting arena, public executions and football. But today, this plaza is the place where the majority of people meet to take a drink and communicate, because it is situated right in the heart of Madrid and most of the tourist attractions are located around it. Namely because of this, it is the most important plaza in the Spanish capital. The Plaza Mayor itself is guarded by impressive buildings with 3 levels and 237 balconies!
Visit Almudena Cathedral – While heading to the Cathedral, you will be greeted by an imposing facade that seems to lay to your feet a monumental stairway to heaven. The entire building of the Cathedral is surrounded by statues of saints, and you can see on the walls immense frescoes that display sequences from the Holy Bible. The day of remembrance of Our Lady of Almudena, the patroness of Madrid, has become an important holiday for the citizens of Madrid since the 11th century.
Right next to Almudena Cathedral is found another touristic gem of the Spanish capital – the Royal Palace.
Built in 1755, this is the largest Royal Palace in Europe that boasts with 3418 rooms. If you decided to delight your eyes with the interior of the Palace, do not miss the Throne Hall, with its ceiling painted by Tiepolo, Gasparini Room – decorated on a floral theme, the Royal Chemist’s – with natural medicine cabinets, ceramic pots and even prescriptions given to the members of the royal family, the Royal Chapel – with a collection of string instruments made by the legendary Antonio Stradivari, the Armory, but also the Painting Gallery – with works of Velazquez, Goya, Juan de Flandes and others. Though it is no longer the royal family’s home, it continues to be their official residence.
Book a table at the “Al Trapo”, the restaurant led by Paco Morales, one of the most interesting new chefs of Spain who reinterpreted the Spanish cuisine by developing new, modern meals from the same traditional Spanish ingredients. Taste some of his dishes like croissant filled with spider crab, stewed oxtail with snails and polenta gnocchi, sauteed baby squid with mashed cauliflower and white pepper foam. Oh, it makes my mouth water… What about you?