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Europe » Spain » Madrid

Madrid has had a host of identities since men first settled the fortifiable site by the shallow River Manzanares. From Roman way station and Arab garrison town to the hub of perhaps the most powerful global empire the world has known, and from there to a war-torn wasteland – few other European capitals can claim a past anything like as chequered. Its history is a complex mosaic of peoples and cultures, and its present reflects that complexity.

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Madrid has had a host of identities since men first settled the fortifiable site by the shallow River Manzanares. From Roman way station and Arab garrison town to the hub of perhaps the most powerful global empire the world has known, and from there to a war-torn wasteland – few other European capitals can claim a past anything like as chequered. Its history is a complex mosaic of peoples and cultures, and its present reflects that complexity.

 

The old and the new contrast vividly in Madrid, where narrow cobbled lanes and 17th-century chapels border modern boulevards and gleaming skyscrapers. Such is the diversity of modern Madrid, where locals revel in the centuries-old sport of bullfighting in the afternoon and then feast on sushi in the evening. And if you ask Madrileños about their favorite attractions, they're just as divided: The masterpieces of the Prado and Thyssen-Bornemisza museums vie with junk-shopping at the Rastro.

 

 

Things to do & see:

Your feet will grow weary before you make your way through the masterpieces of the Prado. The collection rivals that of the Louvre, with works from around the world, but since you're in Madrid you may as well focus on the rich collection by Spanish masters Goya and Velázquez. When the temperatures rise, Madrileños catch a cool breeze in the Parque del Retiro with 350 acres of shade trees, gardens, fish ponds and a lake.

 

Pay a visit to wonderful Barcelona, this beautiful city with its big buildings and lovely park plus beaches is a great place to spend your day and for meeting Spain women. The Barcelona ladies are very pretty, nice and spontaneous, they love to have a chat with you and they also like to show you the city and nice bars and restaurants.

 

For an never forgotten experience visit Granada, this romantic place will blow your mind with its beautyness. You have wonderfull sights and for some culture snapping i definitely reccomend Granada.

 

Shopping

For 500 years Madrileños have shopped for deals at the Rastro. On Sundays true bargain-hunters arrive before 7 a.m. for this flea market's best buys, haggling over gems and oddities: Franco-era furniture, costume jewelry and dusty antiques (or knock-offs). If the Gran Via area isn't the city's trendiest shopping district, Madrid doesn't care to hear it. Many prefer the Art Deco shops selling trendy clothing there over any other district in Madrid. Take home the most traditional souvenir -- a handbag made from supple Spanish leather.

 

 

Nightlife and Entertainment

Although not for everyone, Madrid still loves its bullfights. The city's largest bullring is the plaza de toros at Ventas, where thousands admire the banderillero's footwork and the bull's fury. After midnight, Madrid's young people flock to the lively bars of Chueca and Huertas for drinks. The city's biggest clubs lie on Calle Arenal.

 

 

Restaurants and Dining

Follow Madrid's lead and begin your evening with a tapeo, the Spanish version of a pub crawl. Hop from one tasca, or tapas bar, to the next, sipping Spanish wine and nibbling on chorizo, stuffed peppers and manchego cheese on Ventura de la Vega, Plaza de Santa Ana or the Plaza de Santa Barbara. After tapas, Madrileños head for dinner, indulging in flavors from across Spain: Andalusian gazpacho, Valencian paella and Madrid's own lamb and vegetable stew, called cocido.

 

 

Women from Madrid

Wome in Madrid are confident and attractive. Once you are in Madrid you will definitely fall in love with spanish women. Romance is in the air, and the olive color of spanish ladies will not leave you alone.

 

 

 

 

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