Madrid is the least touristy city I have been to on my solo travels. In spite of being Spain’s capital, it has a very relaxed atmosphere. It is a city full of amazing architecture and wide avenues lined with high end shops. The popular plazas with their terraced dining areas serve exquisite, traditional Madrilenian dishes such as bocadillo de calamares. Leading from the plazas are a maze of narrow lanes with a wealth of interesting shops and tapas bars.
It is easy to navigate your way around by foot and by travelling on its’ comprehensive Metro system.
Downtown Madrid has a number of hotels which vary in their star ratings, close to the main tourist attractions. However, there are many attractive areas to stay slightly further out from the centre too. Melia Madrid Serrano in the upmarket Barrio de Salamanca area, is a great place to stay if you are alone.
Things to do in this city are diverse. The shopping is fantastic. El Corte Ingles is a high end Spanish department store well worth a visit. Other attractions include visiting Cripta de la Almudena or a popular museum. Flamenco shows are also a great way to experience Spanish culture.
Madrid is heaven for ‘foodies’. Typical Madrilenian favourites such as roast suckling pig, churros with chocolate and squid sandwiches are a must when visiting this city!!! Dining options include gastro markets, traditional tapas bars and alfresco dining on the Plazas. Madrid is home to the oldest restaurant in the world, Sobrino de Botìn, a very special place to visit.
Note that not all destinations have the same local laws and customs as your home country. Click on the link to take you to the UK Government’s website which provides up to date information about local laws and customs in Spain.