All cities are famous or known for something, a trait that sets them apart and makes them worth visiting, the catch used to attract tourists. So…what is the city of Madrid known for?
Madrid, the capital city of Spain, is located right at the heart of the country, and with a population of 3.3 million, it is not only the biggest city in Spain but also the second biggest city within United Europe.
Being such a big city, and being the capital of Spain, are some pretty big traits to have, but they’re not what Madrid is known for.
Madrid is better known for being the center of culture within Spain. It is known for its historical buildings and museums, as well as all the palaces related to the royal family. Renaissance and contemporary art, unique neighborhoods, and much more.
It would take a great deal of time to visit every cultural point of interest within the city!
Madrid is also known for being one of the most lively cities in Spain. There is always something going on, something to do, and it has a famous bustling nightlife of fun, that people go back to time and time again.
It is a city where tradition and history meet the sizzling energy of young generations, and the mixture is a beautiful blend of life, that makes this one of the best cities in the world!
The Top Things Madrid Is Known For
Here is our list of the top things that the city of Madrid is famous and known for:
1. Museums – Museo Del Prado And More
Madrid is the center of cultural knowledge within Spain, and this is supported by the many world-famous museums that it has. The most well-known of all the museums is ‘El Museo del Prado’.
The building itself is by Juan de Villanueva, and it was inaugurated in 1819. Within the museum, there is a large collection of paintings, ranging from the 16th to the 19th century primarily. You can find masterpieces by Velazquez, El Greco, Rubens, Bosch, and Goya. Amongst many others!
The museum is considered to be of so much cultural value, that the entrance is free, and can be visited by anyone during opening hours!
Other famous museums in Madrid include ‘Museo de Reina Sofia’, the National Archeological Museum, the Naval Museum, and CaixaForum Madrid.
2. Puerta Del Sol – Where All Roads Begin
The ‘Puerta del Sol’ translates into ‘door of the sun’, and it is by far one of the most famous and popular squares in Madrid city.
It’s the first place where tourists stop, and it is the center of life. Here, you can shop for souvenirs, have some food, interact with the locals, and much more.
This is also where you can find the “Oso y el Madroño”, a statue of the bear, and the strawberry tree that represents Madrid’s coat of arms.
(In fact, it is quite typical for people to meet up here, as it is an easy landmark! So don’t be surprised if there are many people hanging around, checking their watches!)
This is also where you will find Kilometer Zero. It is the starting point for every major road in Spain, and therefore, known as the point where all roads in Spain begin!
Plus, Puerta del Sol is where thousands of people gather every New Year Eve, in order to eat the 12 grapes at the stroke of midnight! (It’s a big Spanish tradition!)
3. The Royal Palace Of Madrid
Built during the 18th century, the Royal Palace of Madrid is the official residence of the Spanish Royal Family.
It is an incredibly luxurious and lavish palace, where the monarchs of the country resided, and the art within is well worth a visit!
Nowadays, although it is still classed as the official residence, it is more of a museum you can visit, and the current monarchs of Spain live in the Zarzuela Palace.
Surrounding the palace is Campo del Moro Park, which dates back to the Middle Ages. Perfect for taking a long walk.
Oh, and much like Buckingham Palace and others, the Royal Palace of Madrid showcases a changing of Guard, which you can witness if you know the exact day and time!
4. Shopping – Gran Via
One thing that Madrid is 100% known for, is shopping. If you’re looking for a big shopping spree, this is the city to go to.
The most famous boulevard, built between 1919 and 1929, is the Gran Via. This is a long street filled with all sorts of shops and restaurants, as well as many iconic buildings.
It is also full of theaters and cinemas, so in older times it was often referred to as the Spanish Broadway!
Nowadays, citizens call Gran Via the street that never sleeps, and it is also an epicenter of nightlife and fun. There is always something to do here, and it is one of the best areas in Madrid to visit.
Also to do with shopping, if you’ve heard of Zara (a world-famous clothing brand originating in Spain), then you will want to visit the biggest Zara store in the world, located here in Madrid!
5. Food – Calamari Sandwiches And The Oldest Restaurant In The world
In Madrid, you can find all of the delicacies of Spanish cuisine in almost any establishment, and there is a wide range of restaurants, bars, and more.
You can also find the oldest restaurant in the world! (And yes, it has a Guinness World Record certificate as proof.) Called ‘Sobrino de Botin’, it was founded in 1725, and the food is delicious.
But if you want to eat something quick, then go to Plaza Mayor, and have a calamari sandwich. Trust us, locals all rave about it!
Another top thing Madrid is known for is soccer. Specifically, the Real Madrid soccer team, which is regarded as one of the best soccer teams in the world!
It has had famous star players such as David Beckham, Brazilian Ronaldo, Cristiano Ronaldo, and many more! Just don’t mention the Barcelona soccer team when visiting Madrid, the rivalry is huge!
Madrid has one of the best cities in Europe when it comes to lively nightlife.
Apart from the many clubs and bars, Madrid is home to one of the most extensive entertainment venues, with seven floors that each have their own setting and atmosphere!
We hope that this article has helped to answer the question ‘What is Madrid known for’ and inspired you to find out for yourself with a visit to the capital of Spain soon.