Madrid Sights

The real Madrid is not to be found along major arteries like the Gran Vía and the Paseo de la Castellana. To find the quiet, intimate streets and squares that give the city its true character, duck into the warren of villagelike byways in the downtown area that extends 2 km (1 mile) from the Palacio Real to the Parque del Buen Retiro and from Plaza de Lavapiés to the Glorieta de Bilbao. Broad

avenidas, twisting medieval alleys, grand museums, stately gardens, and tiny, tile-work taverns are all jumbled together, creating an urban texture so rich that walking is really the only way to soak it in.

Petty street crime is a serious problem in Madrid, and tourists are frequent targets. Be on your guard, and try to blend in by keeping cameras concealed, avoiding obvious map reading, and securing bags and purses, especially on buses and the metro and outside restaurants.

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Fodor's Choice

Area

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Palacio 11

Retiro 10

Moncloa 6

Barrio de las Letras 6

La Latina 3

Malasaña 3

Salamanca 3

Sol 3

El Escorial 2

Lavapies 2

Rastro 1

Chamberi 1

Chueca 1

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Archaeological Site/ Ruins 1

Building/ Architectural Site 4

Castle/ Palace/ Chateau 1

Financial Institution 1

Fountain 1

Garden/ Arboretum 2

Government Building 2

House/ Mansion/ Villa 3

Industrial Site/ Mill/ Factory 1

Information Center 1

Market/ Bazaar 1

Museum/ Gallery 14

Neighborhood/ Street 1

Park (National/ State/ Provincial) 2

Park/ Playground 1

Plaza/ Square/ Piazza 9

Religious Building/ Site/ Shrine 10

Transportation Site (Airport, Bus, Ferry, Train) 2

Viewpoint/ Scenic Overlook 1

Zoo/ Aquarium 1

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Family 4

Views 3

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Madrid Sights

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Museo Arqueológico Nacional

  • Museum/Gallery

After being closed for more than six years, this newly renovated museum, enclosed in a massive neoclassical building, reopened in 2014...

Museo Lázaro Galdiano

  • Museum/Gallery

This stately mansion of writer and editor José Lázaro Galdiano (1862–1947), a 10-minute walk across the Castellana from the Museo...

Plaza Colón

  • Plaza/Square/Piazza

Named for Christopher Columbus, this plaza has a statue of the explorer (identical to the one in Barcelona's port) looking west from...

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