Before my long holiday trip to El Paso, Texas I stopped in Madrid for a day. I did the smartest thing to go there a day earlier than my flight and also the stupidest thing to forgot my passport in Granada which is like over 4 hour driving away. Luckily I got it to Madrid the same night so I was quite lucky.
I stayed in one American girls flat through Airbnb which is a new experience for me. She was really nice and we had quite a good talk. I actually just chose this place because of the pictures I saw online. It looked like a little princess home.
I would say that Madrid is more of a few days trip. Because I was really tired and walked a lot in a day but there was still a lot of things I would have wanted to see.
I started my day with a long walk in a huge park called Parque de El Retiro. There I visited Palacio de Cristal which is an old glass palace and has fossils hanging from the top. Quite close to it is Palacio de Velázquez with the free admission museum. This time there was exhibition of some Lithuanian artist whose name I can’t remember.
Going along the road I passed Monumento Alfonso XII. Finally out of the huge park where I was like at least few hours I got to Puerta de Alcalá with its magic of having cars driving around it. As I remember that there are embassies in Madrid then I decided to visit home(Estonia) for a second and also get to America a bit earlier. The embassies are not anything interesting outside because I couldn’t even find a door to the Estonian one and to get into American one you need a really good reason for it.
So I walked all the way back to the heart of the city center trying to find some food on the way. After walking on Gran Vía I discovered it is more focused on stores and fancier restaurants. So when I started going to my next destination I went to little pastaleria called Bon Appetit! and had a very tasty lasagna for my lunch.
Because some places had a ticket price and didn’t want to spend my money so much then I skipped the Monastery and headed to the Royal palace. On the way I passed the Royal Theater and in front of the palace also Monumento a Felipe IV. Next to the palace is The Sabitini Gardens (Jardines de Sabatini) with all its glory and mighty statues.
As the Palacio Real de Madrid itself was closed for the whole week randomly then I only got to see a little bit from the side in Plaza de la Armería. On the other side of the plaza is Catedral de la Almudena which I somehow really liked because inside it had a colorful ceiling. I got out of there for the sunset and got a picture through the fence.
Also Jardines del Campo del Moro which is behind the palace was closed and I wasn’t sure if it was closed or just one entrance was blocked then I walked all around it. I was so tired and it took me forever to walk around it. And of course it was all closed. As it was getting late and I wanted to have shower before heading to the airport I headed to the place I stayed through Puerta del Sol to see the big Christmas tree in lights and also Estatua del Oso y el Madroño (The statue of the bear and the strawberry tree). It also had a lot of mascots around the the big square and street artists with crazy balance on staying on one hand.
I would say that Madrid is a place to visit but you have to consider that is is quite huge. It takes time to walk from one place to another and definitely need few days to see everything. I definitely want to go back and also visit some museums and the place next time. And I would also recommend Airbnb. I had a good experience with that.