PLAZA MAYOR AND PUERTA DEL SOL
Located a few hundreds
meters away from one another, the Plaza
Mayor and the Puerta Del Sol contend for
the title of the most beautiful square of
Madrid. Indeed, the tourist that visits
any of them will be marvelled by their beauty.
Witness of the
processes of inquisition and canonisation
of Saints, the splendid Plaza Mayor
welcomes both Madrileans as well as
tourists that come to enjoy a cup
of coffee at one of the many cafes
located under the arcades that surround
the Plaza, and from the free informal
exhibitions that often give street
artists. Necessary stop for any tourist
that comes to Madrid , the Plaza marvels
its visitors also for the beautiful
frescos of the main building: the
Casa de la Panaderia.
The Puerta Del Sol, once
upon a time the eastern gate to the city,
falls among the most significant places
of Madrid . This oval is also known as the
"Kilometro Cero," the place from and to
all distances in Spain are measured, and
it is in this Plaza that the most famous
monument of the city is located: The statue
of a bear that eats off of a "madroño"
plant (strawberry-tree). The always-crowded
square becomes even more chaotic for New
Year's. This is not surprising after knowing
that the most important clock of the city
is located on top of the "Casa del Correo"
at the Puerta del Sol. It is here where
the Madrileans welcome the new year with
twelve grapes in their hands that they eat
as the clock chime indicates that the new
year has arrive.
Plaza de Cibeles and Plaza de la
Located both along the
lively Calle de Alcalá, the Plaza
de Cibeles and the Plaza de la Independencia
represent each the starting points of the
Paseo del Prado and one of them, an entrance
to the Parque del Buen Retiro.
The Plaza de Cibeles -
at the centre of which the Fountain of the
same name is located, is surrounded by monumental
buildings: The Palacio de Comunicaciones
of the nineteenth Hundreds, the renaissance-style
building Banco de España, and the
Baroque Palacio de Linares, that houses
the Culturel centre La Casa de America.
At the centre of the Plaza
de la Independencia, formerly one of the
city's gates, lays the Puerta de Alcalá,
sculpted in granite by orders of Charles
III. This magnificent neoclassical arch
of Triumph is even more suggestive at night,
thanks to its beautiful lighting. To one
of the sides of the Plaza there is one of
the entrances to the Parque del Retiro.
España and Plaza de Oriente
The Plaza de España
is the lively starting point of the
Gran Via - Madrid most frequented
road; its perimeter is full of landmarks.
At the centre rests the statue of
the most famous Spaniard of universal
literature: Miguel de Cervantes that
precedes the main characters of his
saga: Don Quixote and Sancho Panza.
About a hundred meters away rise the
Edificio España and the Torre
de Madrid, architectonical gems of
the fifties. At the Plaza de Oriente
-located in front of the majestic
Palacio Real - the equestrian statue
of Phillip IV can be found surrounded
by beautiful gardens.
To the other side of the
statue there is the Teatro Real, a neoclassical
building that houses one of the finest stages
of Europe .
Plaza de la Villa
and Plaza de Colon
A few hundreds of metres
away from the Plaza Mayor and at the heart
of the old Madrid , the Plaza de la Villa
owe its charm to the collection of medieval
buildings that surrounds it. One of these
buildings serves as Madrid 's City Hall
(Ayuntamiento). Also la Casa de Cisneros,
from the fifteen hundreds, and the Torre
de los Lujanes in Mudejar Style can be appreciated
at this plaza.
At the centre
of the Plaza Colon, the memory of
the captain Christopher Columbus is
honoured. To the sides of this square
there are the Paseo de la Castellana
that faces the City's Culturel Centre
and the wax museum.
Plaza de Toros de las Ventas
Those who are passionate about bullfighting
find here Spain 's most famous "Plaza de
Toros" and an interesting museum where the
cycle of the "Tauromaquia" of Goya is displayed.
The Arena features the most spectacular
bullfights of the country from the end of
March until mid October, among which those
that take place during the Fiesta de San
Isidro , the city's patron, are particularly