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Tourist couple posing in a lush green park on a sunny day in Madrid

Top Things To Do In Madrid

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Wondering what to do in Madrid?

The energy in Madrid is like nowhere on earth, and it’s easy for the seductive Spanish capital to bewitch you with its buzzing nightlife, beautiful medieval architecture, and artistic heritage spanning centuries. The myriad things to do in Madrid will enchant any type of traveler, from art- and architecture-lovers to culinary connoisseurs to rowdy revelers. But the city is anything but predictable, and you might find that some of the most memorable things to do in Madrid – taking sunlit siestas, eating churros for breakfast, planning day trips to ancient neighbors, and browsing tiny boutiques – aren’t necessarily the ones you’ll find on a top 10 travel list.

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Tourists exploring a popular neighborhood in Madrid with a local
Art and architecture for the ages

The city is a paradise for art-lovers – exploring its world-class museums and galleries is one of the most exciting things to do in Madrid. Madrid’s enviable art scene is spilling over not only with masterpieces by home-grown icons Goya and Velázquez, but famous works by other Spanish painters like Picasso and Dalí. The city’s stunning architecture itself is part of its artistic appeal. From medieval mansions and opulent royal palaces to Baroque buildings and sleek, contemporary angles, Spain’s rich architectural history is proudly on display as the beautiful backdrop for Madrid.

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Tourists enjoying tapas at a local tapas bar in Madrid with a local guide
Spanish food at its finest

From paella in Valencia to the hearty casseroles of Cataluña, Spain’s cities have their own regional cuisines – and Madrid is the place you’ll find them all. Spain’s six national roads meet in the heart of Madrid, so it’s no surprise the city’s food scene represents flavors from all over Spain. Whether you head to an old-school tapas bar for century-old Spanish snacks like patatas bravas and Iberian ham or try out trendy fusion food and experimental tasting menus at upmarket restaurants doing fearless riffs on the classics, the food-related things to do in Madrid are equally delicious.

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Tourists crossing a road on a night out in a vibrant neighborhood in Madrid
The city after sunset

When night falls, the list of things to do in Madrid only gets longer. You might join locals for a convivial feast under a centuries-old ceiling (or grab some traditional Spanish snacks at a tiny tapas bar), before getting swept along in a tide of happy revelers on their way to the city’s pulsating clubs, cozy bars, and cool cocktail lounges. Dancing until dawn not quite your scene? There are plenty of equally exciting things to do in Madrid at night. See a flamenco show, visit a museum, or simply stroll down twinkling city streets where restaurant tables spill out onto the sidewalks.

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