Madrid Weekend Breaks

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Weekend Breaks to Madrid

Planning a short break to Madrid? Check out Travel Library's recommended Top 10 Things To Do in Madrid. It's a perfect companion for weekend city breaks to Madrid. Once you've been you can add your own tips and suggestions to help other visitors.

Palacio Real

The palace is located in Plaza de Oriente, Calle de Bailén 2. The palace was built between 1738 and 1755, and became the home of Carlos III in 1764. The palace was last used for royalty in 1931, just before King Alfonso XIII and his wife, Victoria fled Spain. Today some of the rooms are open to the public for viewing rich architecture and beautiful ancient decor. The rest of the palace is used for state affairs.

The definite highlights of the visit are the Reception Room, the State Apartments and the Armoury Room. Here visitors have the opportunity to view a rococo room which features a diamond clock, a beautiful porcelain salon, the infamous Royal Chapel, the Banquet Room, and the breath-takingly beautiful Throne Room. The rooms are completely littered with artwork treasures and antiques.

The Throne room contains large mirrors, rock crystal spiders, golden bronze lion statues and a beautifully painted vault, which represents the Allegory of the Spanish Monarchy.

The palace also features an amazing garden, covered in sculptures made for the Kings of Spain.

Open Mon - Sat 9am - 6pm and Sun 9am - 3pm.

Admission for Adults $7.3, Children & Students $3.7

Museo de Cera de Madrid

The wax museum is located in Paseo de Recoletos 41. A wonderful place of enjoyment for the entire family, children will enjoy seeing Columbus calling on Ferdinand and Isabella, as well as Marlene Dietrich having a looksie at Bill and Hillary Clinton, by means of lifelike wax sculptures. The museum features 450 wax statues ranging from entertainment; sport stars; art and history, to science and literature, including heroes and villains of WW2.

The museum also features a fascinating view of the history of Spain, depicted through the use of 27 projectors and hexaphonic sound. Here visitors are guided through centuries of Spanish history by a living figure of Carlos I.

Open daily from 10am - 2pm and 4pm - 8pm. Admission costs are as follows, Adults $8.7 and Children $5, toddlers under 3yrs go in free.

Travellers wanting more information on the museum, can visit their website www.museoceramadrid.com

Zoo Aquarium de la Casa de Campo

The zoo is located in Casa de Campo. The zoo offers a unique experience for the spiritual and cultural satisfaction of its visitors. The facility is home to more than 3000 animals, ranging from 5 different continents. Each individual species is kept in an environment which is closest to its natural habitat. Visitors can expect to see animals such as snakes, beavers, spiders, bears, birds, lizards, frogs and a whole collection of different mammals.

The aquarium complex is home to more than 200 species of fish and invertebrates, which are grouped together in 35 aquariums. The greater part of the aquarium is occupied by the sharks. Visitors can also expect to see beautiful Marine Lions from California, Penguins from America, Dolphins and a whole collection of multicoloured fish.

Open daily 10:30am - sunset. Admission costs for Adults $15, Children aged 3-8 & Senior Citizens $12.

Hotel Villa Real

Located in Plaza de las Cortes, 10, Madrid 28014 Spain. The hotel oozes luxury and style, yet allows that homely atmosphere which convinces visitors to return. The hotel offers its visitors breath-taking views from the individual balconies. Visitors have the choice to either stay in the luxury suites with an independent bedroom and lounge area, or in the double rooms which feature their own jacuzzi. The hotel also offers spacious junior suites surrounded by valuable works of art.

The lounge area is completely covered in an exquisite blend of art and culture. The hotel also features a cosmopolitan-style Restaurant & Bar, where visitors can enjoy a long cocktail list and a simple, yet respectful range of cuisine.

Facilities available include wireless high-speed Internet access, a laundry and ironing service, a limousine service and for pet lovers, pooches are allowed.

For more information, travellers can visit the hotel's website, www.derbyhotels.es

The Ritz Hotel Madrid

The hotel is located in Plaza de la Lealtad 5 and is the most legendary hotel in Spain. The hotel has played and still does, a major role in the life of Madrid. It remains a key attraction for many visiting Madrid. The hotel was built under the supervision of Cesar Ritz, from which the name was adopted and opened its doors in 1910 in the presence of His King Majesty King Alfonso XIII.

The rooms feature magnificent views of the courtyard and the exterior. Further more, the rooms are equipped with uniquely embroided linen, exclusive hand woven carpets, luxurious marble bathrooms, telephones, high-speed Internet access, satellite TV, 24 hr room service, air-conditioning and an electronic safe.

The hotel features a beautiful restaurant, which offers a wonderful selection of Mediterranean and Spanish cuisine.

Travellers can browse the hotel's website, prior to their visit to Madrid on www.ritz.es

Real Fabrica de Tapices

The royal tapestry factory and museum is located in Fuenterrabia 2. The factory was founded in 1721 by King Phillip V. Through almost 300 years of existence the factory has undergone many historical changes. The majority of the designs on the tapestry's are based on cartoons of Goya, who is the factory's most famous employees. Other designs are based on cartoons by Francisco Bayeu.

The factory is open Mon - Fri 10am - 2pm and admission is $2.5.

For more information, travellers can check out their website on www.realfabricadetapices.com

Parque de Atracciones

The theme park is located in Casa de Campo and is easy to reach from anywhere in the city. It features some really exciting rides, the most exhilarating being the Tornado Inverted coaster. The theme park also features entertainment such as a carousel, pony rides for the little one's, a visit to an exciting jungle, a walk through a transparent maze, an old mine excursion which dates back to 1910 and many more.

There are also various restaurants, cafe's and bars which are available to quench the thirst and full the roaring tummies after a day jam-packed with entertainment.

Opening times depend on the day and season, sometimes only closing in the early morning. Visitors are recommended to enquire via email, website or telephone prior to their visit. Admission is $5.50. For further information, travellers can visit their website on www.parquedeatracciones.es

Parque de Retiro

The park was originally known as the playground for Spanish monarchs and their guests, and today, is the most popular park in Madrid. On weekends visitors can expect to be entertained by street musicians, sidewalk painters, fortune tellers, jugglers and street performers.

The park was once splashed with palaces, which where destroyed in the early 19th century and all that remains from its distant past is the Cáson del Buen Retiro, a museum containing paintings from the 19th and 20th century, and a building which houses the Army Museum. Also on display in the museum is the cross that Columbus took with him to the New World.

The park has a majestical collection of fountains and statues and a large beautiful lake featuring a lakeside statue which was erected in in 1922 in honour of King Alfonso XII. The rose garden is definitely a highlight of the park during the hot summer months.

The park is open for viewing 24hrs a day, 7 days a week.

Real Jardin Botanico

The botanical garden was founded in the 18th century and covers an area of 20 acres which is divided into three sections. The garden houses a botanical research centre which is equipped with modern technology as well as a herbarium. It also features an exhibition hall and a library which specialises in botany.

The garden contains more than 104 different species of trees and 3000 different types of plants and flowers. From its first breath, the garden's aim was not only to exhibit an exuberant array of plants, but also to teach botanic and to promote the discovery of new plant species and to classify them.

The park is open daily from 10am - 9pm and admission cost is $1.8

Museo del Ejercito

The museum is located in the Buen Retiro Palace and is home to some outstanding exhibitions from military history. One of the particular highlights is the original sword which was used by El Cid. Another highlight to look out for is the piece of the cross which Columbus took with him when he arrived in the New World.

In addition to these blatant attractions, visitors will also get the opportunity to view the tent which was used by Carlos V in Tunisia, a spectacular collection of relics of Pizarro and Cortes, as well as an exceptional collection of armour.

Open Tue - Sun 10am - 2 pm and admission cost is $1 for adults. Children under 18yrs and Seniors over 65 go in free of charge.

User Suggestions

RASTRO - Tourist Attraction

U should definitely visit RASTRO - the market full of special national and international products on Sunday.

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