39ºC / 102ºF
Having undergone rejuvenation over the last couple of decades, Madrid is now a bustling capital that that has put culture and art at the forefront of its identity. Apart from the main sights such as the Prado Museum and the Royal Palace, there are plenty of hidden gems, quaint curiosities and tranquil green sanctuaries that can be found immediately within the vicinity of the city centre.
The Prado is one of the most famous sights in Madrid, and together with the nearby Thyssen-Bornemisza and the Reina Sofia, they form what is known as the Golden Triangle of Art. These three museums cover an abundance of art that spans over both classical and modern pieces. See Picasso’s evocative masterpiece Guernica at the Reina Sofia and travel through art history at the other two to be completely updated. Exploring Madrid will also undoubtedly expose you to the amazing amount of green spaces found here. Surrounding the Prado, the eight hectare Botanical Gardens and the Retiro Park offer scenic escapes from the urban landscape, and each park in the city has a habit of being the home of beautiful buildings, like the Palacio Cristal in Retiro Park, quirky monuments like the reassembled, ancient Egyptian Temple of Debod in Parque del Oeste, as well as free-roaming animals like the peacocks in Sabatini’s Garden, just to name a few examples.
The heart of Madrid is the Puerta del Sol, where all the all the main streets meet. From here, you can head for a short walk past the Gran Via, to the vibrant areas Malasana and Chueca, where you’ll find narrow streets lined with vintage boutiques, restaurants and exciting bars. Further north, is Madrid’s most stylish avenue, the Castellana. Designer shops and luxurious hotels populate the area and here, like anywhere in the Spanish capital, you won’t be far from new experiences or beautiful buildings and parks to marvel at. Enjoy plenty of drink and tapas, and cheer on the local football teams among fanatical fans in one of the numerous bars, for a true experience of Madrid.
Each region in Spain is fiercely proud of its local identity and culture and regardless of where you find yourself in this vast and fascinating country, you’ll quickly discover that one of the cornerstones in every regional self-image is the local food. We’ve collected (and sampled) the five following dishes, yet these are just a few examples of the great variety of dishes you’ll find in Spain.
Spending an extended weekend in Iceland means making sure you pack in all the things worth seeing and doing here. Don't fret, though, we've kindly compiled a useful list that you are free to follow to make sure you get the full experience of this wonderful Viking island.
Whether you are staying on the mainland, or even on one of the many islands themselves, you can easily travel to and between some of the more remote islands that will give you a glimpse of a more serene part of the Mediterranean, away from the tourists and the developed seafronts.