With a population of over three million, Madrid is a cosmopolitan capital – but one that still feels like a small village at times. This Spanish city has all the comforts and excitement a large metropolis can offer, but retains a sense of warmth and coziness thanks to its high number of family-owned businesses, smiling locals and friendly, neighborhood vibes.
Madrid is full of green spaces ideal for a stroll, like the famous Retiro Park or Casa de Campo, both of which were once royal gardens. Wander past historical buildings with quaint, wrought-iron balconies sandwiched between charming fountains and expansive squares.
With an up-and-coming food scene, Madrid’s culinary delights range from hearty, home-cooked specialties to Michelin-star restaurants. Expect to taste cuts of salted legs of Iberian ham dangling in food markets and inhale the scents of cured cheeses. Don’t be surprised to see locals gathered around barrels tossing back beer, wine and tapas late into the night – Madrileños are known for their warm and vibrant energy.
The city is perfect for art lovers and history seekers. Home to 71 museums, the most famous form the golden art triangle: the Reina Sofia, the Prado and the Thyssen-Bornemisza.
But art in Madrid goes well beyond paintings and museums, with an overwhelming amount events and cultural activities related to literature, theatre, architecture, photography, flamenco dance, music, cinema and more.