Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Madrid’s Cultural Attractions

Madrid’s Cultural Attractions



Madrid, capital of Spain, is located on the river Manzanares and is the political centre of Spain. Although the city possesses modern architecture and technology, it endeavours to preserve the heritage of its past and offers many cultural treats:

The Royal Palace

The Royal Palace is the official residence of the King of Spain and is partly open to the public when it’s not being used for official business. The Palace is home to important masterpieces by artists such as Tiepolo and Caravaggio which can be viewed by visitors, and you can also expect to see some fascinating 13th century weapons and tapestry collections.


Bullfighting is an important part of Spanish cultural history and whether or not you agree with the sport, its well worth a watch. The best place to observe this exciting sport is at the Las Ventas Bullring, and if you’re visiting Madrid in May or June, make sure you check out the San Isidro bullfight festival where fights run every day for twenty days.

Flamenco Dancing

One of the best ways to experience the traditional culture of Madrid is to watch a Flamenco dancing show. The most popular way to watch is to combine watching a show with dinner and drinks. Casa Patas is a well known, high quality Flamenco show as indicated by the number of Spaniards in the audience however booking in advance is essential. For the oldest Flamenco show in Madrid, head to Corral which was ranked in the New York Times list of ‘1000 Places To See Before You Die’.

Templo de Debod

Not many things can beat visiting an ancient Egyptian temple in the middle of a modern Spanish city. Having been rebuilt in 1960, it is not totally authentic, but the bricks are the same and it is the only artefact of its type to be found in Spain. The temple can be found in the Parque de Rosales, a far cry from where it once stood, in 4000BC, in the Nile Valley of Egypt.

The oldest restaurant in the world

‘Botin’ dates back to 1725 and is officially mentioned in the Guinness book of records. Located just off Madrid’s Plaza Mayor, the restaurant has an impressive literary legacy having been mentioned in Hemingway’s ‘The Sun Also Rises’. Goya is also said to have worked as a dishwasher here.

This post has been written by travel blogger Rebecca Kelly of; a travel website offering everything from expert reviews on hotels in London to inspirational guides on Amsterdam.

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