Despite all the hype about the cold season and the fall, let’s be honest: for serial travellers like us, the cold relates to the most beautiful period of the year. Christmas? Well, no. I’m talking about the flight price decrease, the super offers and the possibility to take a getaway trip as if you went out to the bar for a coffee!
Read also: How to turn a weekend getaway into a trip.
For those who don’t like travelling to cold destinations at all and stick to the “who cares about Christmas markets” idea, the warm and mild climate of Spain is always a reasonable destination…in particular, Madrid is always a good idea!
Therefore, my dear friends, here’s a list of some things worth seeing during a weekend in Madrid, things you can’t miss as well as little tips to enjoy the city at your leisure even if you’ve only got two or three days.
Let’s start with the small tips above:
1 – Choose a downtown accommodation
Being in central position does matter in Madrid! Especially in the case of medium, short or very short-term stays.
Besides, I suggest visiting Madrid on foot, hence the choice of a strategic point to start from can mean 90% of your getaway success.
2 – Choose a hotel that tells the history of the place
My followers (good for them) know well that the place of stay is particularly important, wherever they go. I like feeling at home, I appreciate a peculiarly attractive design, and especially I think that taking some time to relax after the long walks is (an essential) part of the trip.
The choice of a hotel that tells some local history (a historic building, for example), with rooms looking onto the historic centre and glimpses of life on display, is the best way to start your daily exploration mission while sipping your coffee and having a local cookie by the window.
As for the above, I suggest staying in one of the Barcelò group hotels in Madrid, that offer nice and central solutions, and where the narration of Madrid’s life and lively culture starts from.
3 – When you don’t walk, choose public transport.
Nothing tells the history of a place better than the faces of people on the bus.
Let’s now get to the beautiful things worth seeing during your weekend getaway.
The Royal Palace
Discovering all of Madrid in a weekend is impossible…actually, it’s impossible to see “everything” even if you take a year, so keep calm and enjoy history.
Start from the Royal Palace of Madrid: a beautiful building dating back to the eighteenth century that is also, by no coincidence, one of the most brilliant symbols of the city. It also represents the mystical character of a city waiting to be discovered: there’s also an underground passage in the Royal Palace that connects it to the Monasterio de la Encarnación.
The entrance fee is 10 euros, but the Royal Palace deserves it all.
Finding the ruins of an (authentic) Egyptian temple in Spain? It happens in Madrid. I personally didn’t know anything about the Debod’s temple, it was actually mentioned to me by some other travellers and, for this reason, they deserve a nice Christmas present.
The temple is simply beautiful: it’s like a small paradise in the open, where you can enjoy an enchanting sunset view.
There’s one more important thing: almost nobody knows about this place, except for the natives.
For this reason, you will never find the mess and chaos that usually relate to the close by Plaza de España. You absolutely can’t miss this place.
Don’t say I didn’t tell you!
Mercado des motores
If you love model trains like Sheldon Cooper but you’re also a stylish person like Holly Golightly in Breakfast at Tiffany’s, don’t miss the Mercado des Motores in Madrid. It’s a fascinating second-hand market different from any other market in the world: there are no stalls and all the stuff is sold and bought aboard train wagons dating back to the nineteenth century. That’s not all: there’s also traditional street food at the Mercado des Motores, besides several old style clothes and objects.
The Mercado des Motores only opens on the weekend of the second week of the month. Therefore, it is basically perfect to end your magic weekend in Madrid.
Do you know about any other must-see destination to enjoy Madrid in an alternative but still authentic way?