We thus take over Fran, from Myguiadeviajes, which last week took us to # Madridconniños, to enjoy a getaway that we have shared these days through all our social channels, especially Our Channel Keys on twitter, under the hashtag #Madridenpareja
Orienting us The best possible location.
We remember when, with just a few years, our parents brought us to this part of Madrid still by car. Today is almost implantable with good communications with suburban and subway trains that are in the vicinity.
On this occasion, and for a long time, our passage through Madrid brings us from afar, although we have always believed that there is no better location than the vicinity of Sol and Preciados. So we arrived Friday night until Hotel Liabeny (full review on this link). Without a doubt and after our experience, the best possible option for service, value for money and location for a getaway in Madrid.
If we had to guide someone to start a route in Madrid, we would always leave Sol. And is that. Although at certain times of the year it may have more crowds, it is the true heart of the city. From here we inspire a route that mixes shopping, events, tapas and emblematic locations.
This route is designed to do walking quietly from morning to late-night without the need for any type of transport.
Sol, Callao and Gran Vía, the most commercial area
In the Puerta del Sol (1), we find the so-called "Kilometer 0" of the Spanish radial roads, although we all relate it more to the famous Tower Clock with which we welcome the new year between grapes and champange.
It is possibly one of the squares with more atmosphere of the city, where the pampering and other animators are mixed with Christmas Lottery vendors of Doña Manolita at this time, and next to the traditional at the same time as modern tree or the symbol of the community , the Bear and the Madroño, give it a special joy.
Although we are not much of large shopping centers, it is to start climbing Preciados Street and find an establishment where it is impossible not to enter for those of us who love Christmas. The English Court has used one of its premises to turn it into a true store of details, decoration and Christmas gifts where you only have to see Paula's face, haha ...
In Madrid there are queues for everything: queues to enter to see the births, queues to take churros and queues for large events ... but what we did not expect was to see !! 4 HOUR TAILS !! to buy Christmas Lottery in Doña Manolita (2) For months now. What do you always play? No wonder, isn't it because they sell 50% of the Spanish Lottery? After such a wait they can give the prize ... and not the tenth. We prefer to make them for some ham sandwiches ... !!
The Callao Square (3) Not only does it have a small ice rink for children and another decorated tree, but it has one of the oldest cinemas in Madrid.
We could not help enjoying a "little evening" recalling the old premises that were gradually disappearing throughout the eighties and nineties and whose philosophy, although renovated, still retains this building from 1926. Although in Madrid there are all kinds of shows, whether it's movies, musicals, theater or other events, you just have to choose the one you like the most ... !! you are in the area of "Madrid Broadway" !!
A good couple walk would be nothing if you don't have your purchases component, no?. And is that turning towards Gran Via (4), one of the main streets of the capital that houses numerous international fashion stores, and continuing along the pedestrian Fuencarral (5), we can have our moment for it.
Does it hunger? Initially towards Alcalá and later advancing towards the south zone of the Puerta del Sol we will arrive at the always lively Santa Ana Square (6), where many people take advantage of a good sunny day to take their midday vermouth in the dozens of terraces distributed between bars and restaurants.
On this route we will not suggest restaurants. Madrid is tapas and tapas is Madrid! Are you going to miss the opportunity? We are sure that any option we would give you would be a success, but there is still a traditional tavern specialized in prawns and shrimp for more than 100 years that survives the most modern trends of today, "Grandfather's House" (7)
Grilled prawns and prawns, shrimp croquettes, prawns banderillas ... Paula garlic prawns? Siiiiiiiiiiiiii
Walking through this area of small streets in which each place suggests you enter more than the previous one, perhaps the most traditional and most years have been in Madrid, and where we stop to try some excellent bravas in another mythical "Las Bravas" (8), we are already heading towards the Plaza Mayor finding more terraces and street markets along the way.
What to say about the Plaza Mayor (9) that someone doesn't know? Here we have breakfast when we go down the ladder to Riviera Maya of summer vacations, but everything has changed since then. Dozens of Christmas stalls cram the rectangular perimeter porch floor.
What still do not have Christmas decoration in your home? Here you have everything from traditional trees to all kinds of details and even nativity scenes, as well as fun for the little ones.
Did we say nativity scenes? Yes! We started this year ours with the portal of Bethlehem ... Yes, olive wood that we brought in April of Belem (Palestine) in our adventure through Israel and Palestinian Territories and who today we complete with the "Mystery"
With or without hunger, there is a "must have" that no one should miss in the Plaza Mayor. If you go down the so-called "Arco de Cuchilleros" you will give the area of caves-restaurant really famous for a dinner, for example, but if you go through the opposite exit on that side of the Plaza you will find the mythical bars "squid sandwiches" (10) Surely many times you've wondered where they were.
He San Miguel Market (11) It is framed in an iron structure of the 20th century. Of the whole tour, this is the only place we do not remember from our childhood, since the current conversion as a gastronomic center dates back to 2009… !! but its pecking is essential !!
A cultural afternoon or a traditional afternoon?
The most travelers now have a great opportunity to get closer to the most cultural Madrid in this area. Almudena Cathedral or Royal Palace may be the best options.
Although a walk through the alleys near the Royal Theater or Opera will take us to that more traditional part, where the smell of roasted chestnuts gives way to other emblematic sites that by its tails it is impossible not to locate.
"Open every day of the year 24 hours" says its slogan. We are in the Chocolatería de San Ginés (12), the most famous in Madrid since 1894, where many tourists and locals come to taste a good chocolate with churros.
Although we, and taking advantage of the unbeatable location of our accommodation, we will take advantage of a short break before choosing the area where we will go to dinner.
La Latina, much more than its theater.
And when night comes, the opportunities offered by Madrid are endless. Chueca, Malasaña, Lavapiés, Salamanca, Huertas ... although today we take the opportunity to meet with friends who already represent a lot in our traveling (and less traveling) lives. The chose, La Latina
The "Madrid de los Austrias" neighborhood where the old Barley market was located, is today a perfect example of the coexistence between the traditional and traditional with the places of design and new trends.
Although our visit to the neighborhood was more social. Sele and Rebeca, Maka and Eva and little Vera They were waiting for us to spend the most pleasant night together.
And it is that little Vera knows that Christmas has arrived, and she did not want to miss the opportunity to enjoy it with all of us. You just had to see Sele, loaded with presents, hahaha. This girl is going to be VERY TRAVELER.
We hope you liked this suggestive route. We can assure you that shopping, tapas, culture and the most emblematic and traditional places will not be lacking, although we accept suggestions to make the next one.
AND THE WINNER OF THE MARISCADA IS…
Many of you are waiting for this moment, so we don't beg to beg. Today, December 16, 2013, as promised and after the closing of the draw at 15'00 we announce that the lucky winner of a FREE MARISCADA placed in your home is ...
!! ENRIQUE NIETO LORENZO !!
Meanwhile, we already have our little Bethlehem growing at home, waiting for new additions in future trips ...
Paula and Isaac, after the weekend in Madrid