Madrid is a city so full of life and culture that it’s hard to do justice to it in a few paragraphs.
Artistically the city holds its own against any in Europe, with the of the best art museums on the continent where renaissance masterworks and seminal 20th-century pieces are waiting to captivate you.
Take in all the historic sights and get the background on the Spanish Empire that spanned the globe in the 16th and 17th-centuries.
There are also countless little things that make Madrid memorable, whether that’s a café con leche in a stately square, drinks at a rooftop bar or a wander through the Retiro or Casa de Campo on a sunny day.
Let’s explore the best things to do in Madrid:
1. The Prado
Absolutely essential, the Prado is one of the best and most popular art museums in the world.
There’s an overwhelming collection of masterpieces by renaissance and baroque masters.
Spain is represented by Velázquez and El Greco, the low countries by Rembrandt, Brueghel, van Dyck and Rubens, while Titian, Caravaggio, Botticelli and Tintoretto form the Italian contingent.
Of the many must-see works are Bosch’s Garden of Earthly Delights and David with Head of Goliath by Caravaggio.
The artist with most works hanging at the Prado is the Spanish Romantic Goya, whose 14 Black Paintings are a Spanish cultural reference point.