Visit the Madrid region in the center of Spain to see an area of diverse natural beauty and towns and cities filled with historic and cultural marvels.
At the heart of the region is the national and provincial capital, which shares its name with the region. Madrid is a modern, cosmopolitan city with a rich history, cultural treasures, some of the best shopping in Europe and a nightlife that seems to never end. It is home to some of the country's most important art museums, including the Prado Museum and the Reina Sofía Modern Art Museum. Browse works by Picasso, Dalí and many of the great European masters.
Explore the historic city center to see where the city was born. Wander around the shops, restaurants and cafés of the 17th-century Plaza Mayor. Over the centuries this grand arcaded square has witnessed bullfights, executions and fiestas. Tour the magnificent Royal Palace, which features more than 3,000 rooms.
Go shopping for luxury items on the Milla de Oro (the Golden Mile) in the upmarket Salamanca neighborhood. At night, enjoy the city’s hospitality in the restaurants of the La Latina neighborhood and the bars and clubs of Chueca, the center of Madrid’s gay scene.
Outside of the capital there is much to be discovered. Take a daytrip to visit the region's other cities and towns or spend a few days exploring its forests, valleys and mountains.
Travel about 31 miles (50 kilometers) northwest of Madrid city to reach San Lorenzo de El Escoria. The town is situated in the Guadarrama mountain range and has several historical buildings, including the 16th-century Monastery of El Escorial.
See more historic structures at Manzanares El Real, situated in the Cuenca Alta del Manzanares Park. After your exploration of the town's medieval fortress and archeological and ethnological museum, walk, hike or cycle around the surrounding countryside. Other places to enjoy the great outdoors include the Sierra de Guadarrama National Park.
Fly into the Madrid International Airport before exploring the surrounding countryside by rental car, bus or train.