Travel | A weekend in Madrid - part 2

by - Thursday, November 28, 2019

Travel | A weekend in Madrid - part 2 -  What I visited in just one day while in Madrid, Spain.


Today we are getting back to Madrid for part 2 of this trip report.
In case you miss the first post, here you are: part 1

We, me and Mr. A, basically had the whole day of Saturday to explore the city and were very fortunate with the weather; sunny, cold and occasionally a bit windy. But hey, better than rain, correct?

Travel | A weekend in Madrid - part 2

Once we exited the Catedral de la Almudena, it was just a short walk until we reached the Royal Palace, and saw the Plaza de la Armeria.
There were so many people waiting in line to go visit the Palace that it made me wonder: is it really worth it? I got curious, to be honest, and if we would have time, maybe we would also go and check it out. But not this time.

Palacio Real - Madrid, Spain
Palacio Real - Plaza de la Armeria
Last time we had visited Madrid, about 10 years ago (!!!), we also had an extensive walk tour and ended up laying on the grass fields right across the Palacio Real, on the Jardines Cabo Naval.
This time we didn't do that; can't even imagine how cold that grass would have felt... hahaha

Palacio Real - Madrid, Spain
Palacio Real
From there, we took a short break to recharge, somewhere on the way from the Palace towards the Royal Opera house. After the much needed and deserved a break, we took the subway from Opera to Retiro.
The process of getting a  subway ticket is quite simple, however, we go a bit confused when we got just one "pass" when we actually bought two one-way tickets. Apparently, you can have multiple tickets in one pass... For two, we paid about 5,50eur, which included two one-way tickets and one pass.

Puerta de Alcalá - Madrid, Spain
Puerta de Alcalá
Instead of going directly to Parque del Buen Retiro, we decided to first go check the surroundings. First, we headed towards the Puerta de Alcalá, which on its own is super beautiful but what caught our attention were the cafes surrounding the square. It looked soooo cozy and nice! Super inviting, really. I wish I had a nice shot of them, but unfortunately, nop... Next time?! 

Fuente de Cibeles - Madrid, Spain
Palacio de Comunicaciones - Fuente de Cibeles
Not far from Puerta de Alcala, is the very famous Plaza de la Cibeles, where you find the astonishing Palacio de Comunicaciones. It's beautiful during the day, but in my opinion, during night time, thanks to the illuminations, it gets to a whole new level! A must-see, trust me.
At this point, our feet started to hurt again, but we had a destination in mind: Parque del Buen Retiro.

Estanque Grande del Retiro (Lake at Retiro Park) - Madrid, Spain
Estanque Grande del Retiro (Lake at Retiro Park)

One of the main attractions of El Retiro is the artificial lake (Estanque), where you find the Monument to Alfonso XII. Here, you can rent boats and have a nice time combined with work out hahaha. But if you decide to do so, I guess it's best to do it between 3-4pm when most locals are having their lunch break, so the chances are higher of getting a boat available.

Another must-see when in El Retiro is for sure the Palacio de Cristal, with free admittance and of course, long lines. Meant to be a winter garden, it is now used to hold exhibitions.
The Palace hides among the many trees and it's a beautiful metal and glass structure, which I find to be the most beautiful building in the whole El Retiro. 

Palacio de Cristal - Madrid, Spain
Palacio de Cristal

From here, we strolled to Passeo del Prado and eventually made it to the Hard Rock Cafe, where we would be getting some early dinner before it was time to go enjoy a good show by the Finnish band called Insomnium.
I totally recommend this band if you are into more melodic metal music. Check them out!

Sunday Morning - Walk Tour

A new day, with fresh legs and no sore feet...
The moment I got out of bed, I could feel all the kilometers we walked on Saturday. 

Sunday started a bit gloomy, with grey skies and some rain showers here and there. It was ok; soon we would be leaving and he had seen most of the city center anyway.

Puerta del Sol
We started off at Puerta del Sol and from there took a left, to Calle de Alcalá towards the Edificio Metropolis
Built in 1905, and French-inspired, the Metropolis is beautiful during daylight, but like with Palacio de las Comunicaciones, it becomes stunning when floodlit. 

Metropolis Building - Madrid, Spain
Metropolis Building
From there, we walked on the Gran Via.
If New York City has Times Square, then Madrid has the Gran Via.
Metropolis Building neighbor - Madrid, Spain
Metropolis Building neighbor 
And then, it was time to head back to our hotel, grab our backpacks (when possible, always travel light! It makes the whole airport-experience so much easier) and head back to the airport.
We wanted to be there early enough to avoid any stress, and guess what? It started to rain the moment we got in our Uber. 
Guess we made the right decision!

Visiting Madrid was so good, in every possible way you can imagine. It's a city that never gets old and, like NYC, never sleeps!
Always something to do, to see, great food and overall, relaxing vibes.

We had such great memories from Madrid; it was the city where I and Mr.A got to meet each other for the first time, exactly 11 years ago on the day we arrived in Madrid this time.
That was the reason why we choose to visit once again.
It felt the right thing to do.

And it was great!
And cold, just like 11 years ago...

And just like back then, we came home with great memories to cherish.

- - - - -

I hope you liked this long post, and also part 1 of this trip to beautiful Madrid. I'm glad that these were the posts that got me back to blogging.
Stars aligned, once again.

I won't be gone for long...

See you next week!

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Travel | A weekend in Madrid - part 2 -  What I visited in just one day while in Madrid, Spain.

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