Perhaps one of the most beloved tourist destinations in Europe, Madrid is full of interesting things to see and do for the entire family. HomeAway offers a wide selection of holiday rentals and holiday apartments for your consideration the next time you travel to Spain, giving you a great alternative to compact hotels with too little living space. The apartments and rentals are available throughout Madrid and the Madrid area, so no matter what you want to experience while visiting the capital of Spain, you are sure to find accommodations nearby, reducing the amount of travel time needed to traverse the city.
What’s more, the holiday rentals and apartments available through HomeAway come with modern amenities, ensuring a comfortable stay that far exceeds a stay in a hotel when you next travel to Madrid, Spain. With balconies or windows that look out on this royal city, you can spend your days exploring and your evenings relaxing with beautiful views of the cityscape and surrounding Madrid area. And with great prices, there really is nothing keeping you from taking a great first step toward a memorable holiday by booking a holiday rental or apartment in one of Madrid’s many districts.
Madrid is a city that has it all. From museums teeming with art known around the world, to luscious gardens, architecture from a variety of periods, nightlife, theatres, football, and everything in between, this lively city has something to pique everyone’s interests. In terms of museums, some of the most popular include:
- Museo del Prado. This is without a doubt one of Europe’s most celebrated and important museums. You’ll find works from Europe masters around every corner, including Goya, Rubens, and Velazquez, to name just a few. The building itself is also an architectural beauty.
- Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia. Formerly an 18thcentury hospital, this museum now houses works that showcase the great names from the end of the 19thcentury up to World War II. One of the most famous paintings hanging in this museum is Guernica, which was painted by Pablo Picasso and depicts the bombing of Guernica during the Spanish Civil War. Other notable artists with works in this museum include Dalí, Miró, and Solana. Moreover, the museum also contains a library comprised of over 10,000 volumes and more than 1,000 periodicals—a veritable paradise for bibliophiles.
- Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza. This museum was originally a private collection. Housed in a neo-classical mansion, this museum has works dating back to the 13thcentury and up to contemporary times. This museum and the two mentioned above are all located in Madrid’s Avenue of Art, and you can get a ticket that grants entrance to all three for a bargain price.
Madrid has long been the capital of Spain; as such, the nobility and wealthy flocked to the city, and there are several fine examples of noble domiciles throughout Madrid and the surrounding Madrid area. Some of the more prominent palaces include:
- The Palacio de Cibeles. This palace and the fountain on the plaza have been come iconic symbols of Madrid. Since 2007 the palace has housed city hall. There is also a restaurant at the top of the palace that boasts delicious culinary delights and a splendid view of Madrid.
- The royal palace. This particular royal palace happens to have the distinction of being the largest royal palace in all of Western Europe. It was designed to accommodate an astounding 3,000+ courtiers. In addition to itself being a work of art dating back to the mid-18thcentury, the royal palace has a veritable treaure trove of tapestries, paintings, sculptures and furniture. The royal gardens are well manicured and also worth a visit.
But the gardens of the royal palace are not the only gardens that draw visitors. You can book a holiday rental or apartment within walking distance of several of Madrid’s most renowned parks and gardens, allowing you to breathe in the fresh air while taking a morning stroll or to relax on a bench with a book, surrounded by beautiful greenery. Some of the most popular parks in Madrid include:
- Retiro Park used to be reserved exclusively for the royal family, and a walk through the park easily reveals why: the green gardens, eye-catching architectue, and numerous fountains lend this park an air of nobility. Bring the family or your loved one for a relaxed picnic, or simply while away the time watching the many visitors strolling through the park. There is often live music, and you can also take in a puppet show with the kids.
- El Capricho park has stunning landscaping and boasts three beautiful gardens: the French gardens, the Italian gardens, and the English gardens, each cultivated according to the corresponding style. The many statues and figures throughout the park are also fun to take in while you stroll through the park, adding character to an already stunning setting.
- Casa del Campo is ideal for those who like to stay active while on holiday. You can go jogging, take a dip in the water, rent a canoe, or go cycling. What’s more, there is also a zoo and an amusement park on the grounds, making this a very pleasurable place to spend your time outdoors. There are also groves of trees and several types of birds and other animals that call these grounds home.
Madrid is also a beloved destination for those who are avid football fans. Bernabéu Stadium is where Real Madrid plays its home games, and fans can take in a game first hand in the midst of excited Spanish fans. Those who are more interested in Atlético Madrid can head to the Vicente Calderón Stadium to watch their favourite team play. Both stadiums have large capacities, and the atmosphere is always one of excitement and anticipation. The Vicente Calderón Stadium also has a museum telling the 103-year-old history of Atlético Madrid where fans can see photos, trophies, shirts, and much more.
Madrid is also well known for its Flamenco dancers, and there are several theatres and venues throughout the city where you can take in a show. Before heading to the theatre, make sure to experience delicious Spanish cuisine in one of the local restaurants. Tapas are an integral part of Spanish cuisine, and even the most discerning food lover will find their taste buds watering and subsequently satisfied by traditional Spanish dishes. And while those who book rentals and apartments in Madrid will surely never find a moment of boredom, there is much outside of Madrid to see as well. Within the Madrid area you have easy access to many famous sites, including:
- Toledo has a vibrant past. The city is still surrounded by its original city wall, adding to its intrigue and uniqueness. Toledo is also known for having been a place where the three Abrahamic religions – Judaism, Christianity, and Islam – coexisted, and signs of that coexistance can be seen throughout the city. The Gothic Cathedral is awe-inspiring, and the Alcazar fortress is of interest to those who enjoy military history. Stroll through the gates leading into the city for more interesting architecture, and head to the Synagogue of El Transito, where you can also visit the Sephardic Museum.
- El Escorial is home of the Royal Site of San Lorenzo de El Escorial, a beautifully constructed monastery and hunting lodge that was historically the seat of Spain’s monarch. It was here that the bodies of deceased monarchs were taken for preparation, and a tour of the monastery gives insight into the process and offers many other interesting information and sites. Without a doubt, El Escorial is well worth a day trip. No matter what brings you to Madrid or the Madrid area, one of the best ways to enjoy your stay is to avoid cramped hotels and instead opt for a holiday rental or apartment. Having your own home away from home adds a special layer of enjoyment to your trip and helps you further escape the stresses of day-to-day life. What’s more, a holiday rental or apartment can serve as an excellent starting point for your exploration of the city of Madrid as well as the surrounding area. With natural beauty, comfortable weather, architectural prowess, culture, history, and delicious dishes, it’s no wonder Madrid is one of the most beloved tourist destinations in Europe.