Weekend Ward Escape to
MADRID With bullfighters, women who dance clapping metal cymbals and huge 30 inch plates of paella there’s no doubt Madrid sees itself as a macho city. Hardly a place for a relaxing weekend away you may think. Wrong, Madrinos also have a strong reputation for enjoying themselves ... you just have to let them take the lead. Where to stay? Like any capital city staying in Madrid is expensive. Visiting at the weekend does let you take advance of reduced rates when all the business travellers have left. Try the centrally located Petit Palace Arenal (Calle Arenal) approx £60 a room. If you’re still waiting for your paycheck you could try the Barbieri Internation Hostel (Calle Barbieri), just a short walk from the centre, which offers double rooms from under £30. Or if you’re planning a really special weekend away you could splash out on Hotel Santo Mauro (Calle Zurbano) - the choice of residence for the Beckhams at £250 per night.
Eating Tapas will become addictive whilst in Madrid. Pop into a bar, order a drink, and nibble the night away with the locals - it’s how they can stomach drinking until the early hours of the morning. The top tapas treats can be found at Juana la Loca (Plaza Puerta de Moros) or Alhambra (Calle Victoria) which offers a more lively experience with heavy music and a younger crowd.
For a more sedate sit-down meal consider La Viuda Blanca (Calle Campomanes) which offers a modern take on Spanish cuisine.
Key attractions Palacio Real - Arguably the most impressive building in Madrid with fantastic gardens which are perfect for a spot of lunch. There are 3,000 rooms to the Royal Palace, many of which you can wander through. El Teleférico de Madrid - This is a 10 minute cable car ride that departs from the park behind the Royal Palace. It’s a great way to see the city from afar and also ends at a welcome restaurant.
Prado Museum - This is Madrid’s most popular tourist attraction and claims to have a higher concentration of masterpieces than anywhere else in the world. At any time there are 1,500 works of art on display out of an impressive collection of 9,000. Parque del Retiro - Retiro means retreat and is the most popular park in Madrid. With a large lake, monuments and shaded areas it’s the perfect place to relax after stomping around the Prado which is conveniently situated close to the main entrance.
Nightlife Plaza de Toros de Las Ventas Whether you are amazed or are appaled
by bullfighting it’s certainly a big part of Madrino culture and increasingly popular. Tickets can cost from a few quid to over fifty depending on where you sit in this massive 25,000 seater stadium with the action kicking off from 7pm. Casa Patas (Casa Canizares) - Flamenco is the other great Madrino passion and certainly worth an evening’s viewing. Casa Patas offers one of the more authentic experiences. Entrance is approximately £25 and includes a complementary drink. Find the full Madrid guide at JuniorDr.com
Key facts • Population - 2,905,100 • Language - Spanish • Currency - Euro • Madrid is Europe’s highest city (2,100 feet)
Junior DR magazine design and layout. Issue 15.