Madrid Journals

Madrid in 3 Days

An October 2009 trip to Madrid by anitaellen83

Plaza de Toros de las Ventas Photo, Madrid, Spain More Photos
Quote: Honeymoon part one was in Madrid, Spain.

Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía

Attraction | "Don't Miss Guernica"

Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía Photo, Madrid, Spain
Quote:
Reina Sofia is a museum of modern art in Madrid. Its galleries, often lit by natural lighting are perfect for viewing the art. There are plenty of works by Picasso to enjoy, as well as many other famous artists of the modern era. Of course the most famous painting there is Guernica that draws a large crowd. You can purchase a museum pass good for Reina Sofia, Museo del Prado, and Thyssen-Bornemisza for about 15 E. Just keep in mind that Reina Sofia is dark on Tuesdays, while the Prado is dark on Mondays.

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on November 30, 2009

Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía
Santa Isabel 52
Madrid, Spain 28012
+34 (91) 7741000

Hotel Santander

Story/Tip

Hotel Santander Photo, Madrid, Spain
Quote:
We stayed in Madrid on a budget, so we chose Hotel Santander Calle Echegaray 1, 28014 Madrid, Spain, +34 91 429 95 51 (www.hotelsantandermadrid.com). Even though we saw mixed reviews, we went ahead and booked because the location was close to several metro stations and close to the museum district. The people at the front desk speak very little English, but were generally helpful. The elevator was scarcely big enough to fit our luggage and ourselves in, but this appears to be the case all over Europe. The room was very clean and comfortable and the bathroom had fresh linens each day. The hotel was only a little noisy at night, but as the Madrilenos go out on the town at 1 am and don't leave until...Read More

Museo del Prado

Story/Tip

Il Prado Photo, Madrid, Spain
Quote:
The Museo del Prado has many works of Spanish art, including Velazquez and Goya. The most famous painting of Velazquez is of course Las Meninas depicting a commissioned work from the point of view of the subject. It's very cool to just stand around the great work, since it is nearly life size, and imagine yourself as the king and queen being painted. And almost all of the highly acclaimed works of Goya are housed here, the pincturas negras as well as the second and third of May. In these works you can clearly see glimpses at the genius of Goya and how he is a forerunner to modern art. The galleries themselves are quiet and well-lit making it an excellent place to view these magnificent works. Th...Read More

Seeing Guernica

Story/Tip

Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía Photo, Madrid, Spain
Quote:
The highlight of my trip to Spain was seeing Picasso's Guernica. The gallery itself is a beautiful place to view art and they showcase this masterpiece well. In the surrounding galleries there are studies for the faces and the bull in the painting. It lends a background against which to view the work. The painting itself is larger than life and it draws you in, many viewers tripped the alarm getting so close to the painting. The scenes depicted are not of graphic gore but of a sheer human terror that is difficult to ignore. I was moved to tears even though I had no connection to the events surrounding this painting. There is also a photographic documentation of the process Picasso took to reach...Read More

Plaza de Toros de las Ventas

Attraction | "Great Sport"

Plaza de Toros de las Ventas Photo, Madrid, Spain
Quote:
Bullfighting is quite an amazing sport to watch firsthand. Not all may agree that this sport is entirely humane, but having watched one, I believe that the tradition is intended to honor and respect the bull. It is not true that the bull is wounded prior to running out. The bull is brought out fresh and is drawn to different sides of the arena to display his full strength. Later, horseman throw spears at the bull and wound it with "bandilleros" before the fighter approaches close. The bullfighter then works close to the bull, attempting to tire it out before finally overtaking it. The thrill of the sport comes from seeing how strong the bull is and seeing the bullfighter take on the risk of putt...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on November 29, 2009

Plaza de Toros de las Ventas
Calle De Alcalá, 237
Madrid, Spain
913 56 22 00

Plaza de Toros de las Ventas Photo, Madrid, Spain
Quote:
We decided that we definitely wanted to see a bullfight in Madrid. The season lasts nearly all year, mostly March-October, so there should be something available. We booked our tickets online through TicketMaster Espana. All you have to do is print out the barcode which you swipe at a kiosk near the ticket counter. Your tickets are printed and the ushers direct you to your seats. The Las Ventas arena was very easy to find from the metro stop. We ate tapas at a cute bar across the street. We were able to buy a bottle of wine for 7 E at the arena and found our seats. We chose to sit in "sombre," or shade, since we heard the bulls prefer the shade. However, by the end of the second fight, the wh...Read More
Our metro stop Photo, Madrid, Spain
Quote:
The Madrid Metro system is very accessible and affordable. The stops are every few blocks and there are plenty of hubs to change and the lines are easy to follow. The cars are all clean and comfortable and generally feel safe. However, I would absolutely not recommend dragging lots of baggage through these station. Most are equipped with escalators, but there may be issues getting up short flights of stairs or getting into the car since often they are not level with the platform. Best to take a cab to and from the hotel with your big bags and use the metro for other short journeys.