Thursday, January 13, 2011

Madrid - Part 2/3

After our unexpected London/St. Albans adventure we boarded a plane and headed to Madrid.  It was quite a relief to get there and be in 50 degree weather, with the sun shining and no snow on the ground!

Philip and I stayed at a hostel (terrible experience) that was near Gran Via/Puerta del Sol.  A great location to be at.  The Metro system in Madrid is by far the best I've seen in my Euro/USA travels.  Incredibly clean, and efficient with trains that run every 2-3 minutes.

We spent a lot of time wandering the city and using our "Eyewitness Travel: Top 10 Madrid" which is my favorite travel guide book I've come across.  It's great - highly recommended.  Through the book we found lots of great museums, cafes, statues, parks, etc.

Palacio Real (Royal Palace)

At the entrance to Parque de Madrid (Their version of Central Park)

At the Parque

 In front of Casa Labra - one of the top rated Tapas bars in Madrid

First picture of 2011 in Puerta del Sol

As a whole, I really did enjoy Spain.  But... New Years was kind of lame.  There were thousands of people in Puerta del Sol but there was no music, no food or drink stands, no fireworks, no COUNTDOWN.  There was a big clock and once it struck 12 people started cheering (and spraying champagne) but I found it to be anticlimactic.  (Plus, Zurich's public square NYE celebration last year was awesome and I had high expectations.)

Also, it was not as English friendly as I was expecting.  Obviously living in Bulgaria, that's not a "make it or break it" deal for me and people in restaurants were helpful when they could be but I just expected more people to speak English.  It wasn't a problem, just an observation.

Spain is a beautiful, beautiful place (with very beautiful people!) and I would 100% go back.  Maybe Barcelona next time...

Next (and last)... Berlin!  


Catherine said...

I will go with you!

Senorita said...

Barcelona is way better for sure, just don't expect them to be much help with English.