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Our Madrid Path

Here's a quick look at the Madrid itinerary, in case you're looking to plan a trip, and a picture of my map with our route highlighted.

Hotel Checkin -- Eric Vokel Madrid Suites 
We picked this hotel because the price was excellent and we got an apartment with two rooms, a bathroom and kitchen. With four women traveling together, this made more sense than two small hotel rooms. The one drawback was no 24-hour hotel desk, so in the early morning, there was no one around to hail a taxi to the airport.

Walk to the Prado from the hotel along the Gran Via seeing Banco de Espana and Plaza de la Cibeles where the Real Madrid fans party when they win big along the way. Oh! And the Hotel Ritz! Museo del Prado is open until 8 most nights. And most museums are closed Mondays, except for the Prado.
The Royal Botanic Garden is behind the Prado, but we didn't have time to walk through it. From there, you can choose a few streets to get to the Puerta Del Sol (see el Oso and Tio Pepe!) and continue to Plaza Mayor for wine and tapas.
The Mercado de San Miguel is right around the corner, for sweets or other treats.

Day 1 - Blue Path

This was the day we overslept, so here's our original path, with links to the museums we didn't get a chance to see. Next time.

Start by heading west to the Palacio da Liria, which is a cool palace belonging to the Duke of Alba, one of Spain's most distinguished nobles. You have to petition months in advance to be allowed inside but you can catch glimpses of it from the street.
Just down the block is the Museo de Cerralbo which has a really nice collection of art and furniture. Then, continue just south to the Plaza de Espana with its statue of Don Quixote.
From there, the Royal Palace is just past one of the royal gardens. The tour is pretty good, with access to the royal throne room! (But don't make our mistake, and get there when it's closed.)
The Teatro Real (or Royal Theater) is across the way, and that neighborhood has cool twisty alleys and shops.
Then head back up to the Gran Via for shopping at Mango, Zara, etc. And for more shopping, turn left on Calle de Fuencarral for a pedestrian street of shops.
At the top of the Calle de Fuencarral there is the Museo de Romanticismo that looks to have a great collection of art and decorative pieces. Or, there's the Museo de Historia de Madrid in a pretty pink building nearby. There's also a secret garden in this neighborhood that you can seek out.

Day 2 - Pink Path
Madrid sights I left off: Thyssen, El Rastro/La Latina neighborhood, Museo Reine Sofia. We just didn't have time to get to everything I wanted to see.

See a bunch of photos of what we saw in these two days here.

Related Posts:
Madrid Sights in 2 days - In Pictures
Spots in Tenerife to Visit
Why London is Awesome!
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