Glorieta del Emperador Carlos V

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    • Day 53

      Santiago to Madrid

      June 12, 2022 in Spain ⋅ ☀️ 36 °C

      I caught an early taxi to the airport for my 9.20am flight to Madrid. We walked alongside the airport on the last leg of the Camino but it seemed much further in the taxi.

      I then caught the airport bus to Atocha Station and my hotel is just a short walk away. It’s another great room with big windows and a balcony overlooking the plaza.

      It’s very hot. I had a walk around the neighbourhood and another gigantic pizza for lunch (and the rest for dinner).

      After a brief siesta I went for a walk through some of Retiro Park and then through the Botanical Gardens. I joined the queue for the free entry into the Prado (every day for the last two hours of opening) but they reached the quota when I was almost at the front of the line. I will try again tomorrow. I have found that entry to most places is greatly reduced for the over 65s so it is fairly economical to go to most museums and galleries.

      Although it is Sunday a lot of shops were open and Madrid is very busy. It is an entirely different pace to my time in Spain so far and I am looking forward to seeing more tomorrow.

      Sleep’n Atocha
      10 kms
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    • Day 3

      Madrid Part 1

      August 30 in Spain ⋅ 🌙 77 °F

      We put 8 miles on our feet exploring some of Madrid's delights. Started out with a simple but filling breakfast, walked up Calle Atocha through Plaza Mayor to the Catedral de Santa María la Real de la Almudena. We toured the cathedral and marveled at its beauty. One room covered in gorgeous mosaics didn't allow photography so you'll have to check it out for yourselves.

      Next we toured the Royal Palace and said hi to King Felipe and Queen Letizia (ok, it was a painting). Lots of beautiful art and tapestries. After that, a well earned lunch in the cave at El Botín, operating since 1752.

      For dessert, churros and chocolate at Chocolatería San Gines. Yum!

      We did a little more walking and window shopping, then picked up some Jamón Iberico de Bellota to nibble on later.
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    • Day 5

      Madrid Part 2

      September 1 in Spain ⋅ ⛅ 77 °F

      Walked 12 miles today.

      Started the day with the buffet breakfast at our hotel. I tried the pan con tomate. It was tasty but it's really hard to beat the freshly baked croissant. We spent the rest of the morning waking it off in the Parque del Retiro.

      We shopped and ate throughout the afternoon. I found several fabric stores but was only able to shop at two of them before they all closed for siesta. The Mercado de San Miguel was crowded and fun for tapas.

      We capped the night with an intimate flamenco show. They only allowed us to record the opening song. I really enjoyed the show. The female dancer made beautiful shapes with her dress and body. The male dancer looked like Rick Springfield (enough said there).

      Tomorrow we head for Pamplona.
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    • Day 63

      Tag 63 - letzter Tag in Begleitung

      November 5, 2022 in Spain ⋅ ⛅ 3 °C

      Heute haben wir um 13:00 Uhr mit der Cousine meines Onkels Susanna am Bahnhof von Madrid abgemacht, so dachte ich das ich heute ein wenig länger schlafen kann, doch mein Onkel weckte mich wieder ziemlich früh und wir frühstückten wieder gemeinsam zuhause. Frühzeitig machten wir uns auf den Weg zur Metrostation und gingen dann mit dem Metro zum Bahnhof Atocha, dort warteten wir auf Susanna. Wir liefen Richtung Zentrum und sie fragte uns, was wir essen gehen wollten, denn sie wollte eigentlich ein Cocino Madrileno mit uns essen gehen, wusste aber nicht, ob ich das mögen würde. Da mein Onkel aber so Lust auf das spanische antike Gericht hatte und meinte das ich dieses mögen würde, sind wir tatsächlich ein Cocino Madrileno essen gegangen. Der Cocino ist eine Suppe, die mehrere Stunden lang mit verschiedenen Fleischstücken gekocht wird, zuerst wurde die Suppe serviert, die ich auch gemocht hatte und danach das Fleisch, von dem ich auch zwei, drei Arten mochte. Vom Restaurant aus, liefen wir weiter bis ins Zentrum, wo wir eigentlich dachten das wir schnell eine Bar oder eine Cafeteria finden, bei der wir einen Kaffee trinken können. Da in Spanien aber Mittagszeit war, durften wir uns nur hinsitzen, wenn wir auch etwas essen würden. So liefen wir noch weiter, bis wir eine Cafeteria fanden, bei der wir einen Kaffee trinken konnten. Da wir gerade im Zentrum waren und ich noch ein paar Sachen benötigte, sind wir diese auch noch einkaufen gegangen. Wir verabschiedeten uns von Susanna und gingen zurück nach Hause, bevor wir aber nach Hause gingen, sind wir uns von unserer Tante verabschieden gegangen, denn mein Onkel verlässt Madrid morgen bereits wieder und auch meine Tage hier sind gezählt. Es war bereits spät und wir gingen nach Hause und entschieden uns, wo wir Abendessen gehen möchten. Als wir am Mittwochabend im Viertel Abendessen gingen, sahen wir eine Pizzeria die napolitanische Pizza zubereitet und da wir nicht mehr ins Zentrum gehen wollten, entschieden wir uns heute für Pizza. Das Restaurant war leider bereits voll, doch wir konnten die Pizza mit nach Hause nehmen und zuhause geniessen. Die Pizza war die beste die ich bis jetzt in Spanien gegessen hatte.Read more

    • Day 4

      Leaving Madrid

      September 20, 2019 in Spain ⋅ ⛅ 21 °C

      We have had a lovely time in Madrid but we must now leave now for Barcelona. A quick beer and cake whilst we wait for a platform is a must. We had Churros for breakfast which you must try if you come here.
      The trains can be very confusing and different ticket desks only sell tickets for certain trains. The local short distance trains arec Renfe Cercanias. The long distance trains are Renfe trains from the Botanical Gardens.
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    • Day 3

      Atocha Botanico

      April 17 in Spain ⋅ ☀️ 15 °C

      El Atocha es la estación de ferrocarril más importante de España. Madrid es un nudo de comunicaciones. Todas las conexiones de transporte parten de aquí y llegan hasta aquí. La antigua estación de ferrocarril del martes es ahora un jardín botánico.Read more

    • Day 23


      March 21 in Spain ⋅ ☀️ 21 °C

      (Am posting these footprints the next morning as I fell asleep before getting to them last night. I do find I get very tired on this trip!)

      One-night stop in Madrid. Lovely area with loads of arty stuff on walls or decorative features on buildings and still lots of older buildings. Very vibrant and feels young (in a good way). Sorted some little work things and sponsorship payment for Eleanor's readathon.

      I had a beer (and plate of olives) and then had dinner at a vegan restaurant. The dinner was nice, but quite on the heavy side and I've been doing so many days where I eat only small snacks through the day that I couldn't come close to finishing it. They served a piece of bread topped with salted pickled ribbons of cucumber (so good - I could have eaten a whole plate of that cucumber) to start and then I had croquettas and I think they had a mushroomy breast filling with a vegan mayonnaise to dip in. And then I had (can't remember what it was called) a bocadillo with seitan and roast pepper with fried potato wedges and a vegan sour cream and onion dip. I think I need to be defaulting to salads or plates of roasted vegetables an not lots and lots of bread and potatoes!

      Then wandered back to the hotel room. I love walking through vibrant cities like this in the evening. Had been struggling to find somewhere to stay in Lisbon in my budget for the length of time I wanted, so needed to look at other options. I have a reservation to Badajoz, so Chris suggested looking there and saw that it looks quite nice and full of historic architecture. So I looked a bit more and saw it has a museum of contemporary art that is free entry and I found a nice looking Airbnb in my budget so booked that for a few days.

      And then pretty much went straight to sleep!
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    • Day 4

      Back in Madrid

      September 15 in Spain ⋅ ⛅ 75 °F

      》Just outside Atocha Station...

      A pair of gigantic, realistic baby heads greet passengers. Made of bronze, they stand 3 meters (or nearly 10 feet) tall and weigh over 2 tons each. Although they may seem slightly creepy, the story behind these sculptures is a sweet one.

      The baby heads,  installed here in 2008, are the work of the Spanish artist Antonio López García. They represent “Day” (Día) and “Night” (Noche). One of them has its eyes open and the other has its eyes shut. Designed in López García’s realistic style, the meaning behind the freestanding baby heads may leave viewers scratching their own heads. But actually, both are based on the face of López García’s granddaughter Carmen, when she was only eight months old.
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    • Day 22

      Estación de Atocha

      October 4 in Spain ⋅ ☀️ 23 °C

      At the moment there are some ongoing renovations, which makes it a bit loud and you can not see the station in all of its glory. However it is still a nice green spot to sit down and wait until your train arrives.Read more

    • Day 1


      January 4, 2020 in Spain ⋅ ☀️ 7 °C

      The most common image that you see of Madrid is of a bear standing on its hind legs eating from a tree.
      This is because back in the early days bears once roamed here and ate from these trees which had small strawberry like fruit.

      Madrid is the capital and most populous city of Spain. The city has almost 3.3 million inhabitants and a metropolitan area population of approximately 6.5 million. It is the third-largest city in the European Union (EU), surpassed only by London and Berlin, and its monocentric metropolitan area is the third-largest in the EU, smaller only than those of London and Paris.
      The municipality covers 604.3 km2 (233.3 sq mi). The Madrid urban agglomeration has the third-largest GDP[14] in the European Union and its influence in politics, education, entertainment, environment, media, fashion, science, culture, and the arts all contribute to its status as one of the world's major global cities. Madrid is home to two world-famous football clubs, Real Madrid and Atlético Madrid. Due to its economic output, high standard of living, and market size, Madrid is considered the major financial centre and the leading economic hub of the Iberian Peninsula and of Southern Europe. It hosts the head offices of the vast majority of major Spanish companies, such as Telefónica, IAG or Repsol. Madrid is also the 10th most liveable city in the world according to Monocle magazine, in its 2017 index.
      The Madrid train station is a unique style of building and houses an indoor garden of palms and other plants.
      Getting around Madrid is not so easy as there are few English signs as directions.
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