After Berlin in February it was time for Madrid in March. I haven’t been in Madrid since 2013 so I decided to just take it slow, relax and enjoy the city.
One of my best friends is enjoying her Erasmus+ experience in Madrid this semester and I was glad to visit her. Although it was strange to be in Spain again after my own study abroad period, it was fun. But when arriving in Spain again, I realised how much I was missing this country since I had been back in Belgium. I love to travel to this southern part of Europe in Spring because it is already a bit warmer here than in cold Belgium. I love to just sit and relax on a terrace in the sun.
Because my friend didn’t have holiday, I wandered on my own through the city on first day like I used to do in Valencia and I loved it. Madrid is way bigger than Valencia and there is people everywhere, because of this overwhelming busyness I think I missed the cosyness of my second hometown even more. On my first day I visited Plaza España and I found my way to the royal palace. I enjoyed Mercado de San Miguel and its colorful fruits and food. Stephie and I ended the day together with a delicious dinner in the small vegan chain, Loving Hut, which definitely is highly recommended! On my second day Stephie and I wandered through the streets North of Plaza del Sol where you can find lovely shops and boutiques. We had lunch at Plaza Mayor and enjoyed reading on this sunny square. Having lunch on this famous Plaza is recommend because at noon most terraces are placed in the sun and the prices of the different restaurants vary so you can choose what ever you want. Most restaurants serve tapas but other main dishes as well.
Stephie had class in the afternoon so I decided to find my way to El Parque del Retiro and I found a seat near the water. When in Madrid you need to see this charming park with its original street artists and cute boats, which you can rent to enjoy the sun on the water. The next day, we decided to visit the most fancy neighborhood of Madrid, El Barrio de Salamanca. After a walk through El Parque del Retiro, here we visited the lake and the crystal palace (a must-do), we wandered through the multicultural barrio Puerta de Toledo, Lavapies y El Rastro. If you have time, this barrio is a must-see. It is a cosy neighborhood with lots of small shops where you can find people of all nationalities.
On my last day we decided to go shopping in the neighborhood of Plaza del Sol and El Gran Via. Although the streets were busy because it was a Saturday, we enjoyed it. We had lunch in Le Pain Quotidien, from which we, vegans, were surprised of all the options on their menu. From now on I will enjoy this chain more all over the world when traveling!
Madrid is the perfect Spring citytrip! I loved to talk with Stephie and it was magical to be in Spain again after my own Erasmus+ experience.
I hope you enjoy Madrid and its sunny weather as much as I did.