What to do in downtown Madrid

The capital of Spain is a city full of life, there are so many plans and things to discover that even if you are a Madrilenian you will surely have some pending. Let us surprise you with our best recommendations on what to see and do in Madrid.

Discover the best plans and places to visit in Madrid city center


Culture, gastronomy, shopping... whatever your hobbies, in Madrid center you will find something for you. Here are our 13 musts you can't miss:



  • Stroll through the Retiro Park and rent a boat at the Estanque Grande. Take the opportunity to have a picnic next to the Crystal Palace and relax reading a book in the Eugenio Trias public library, overlooking the park thanks to its large windows.

  • Discover the headquarters of the Madrid City Hall, in the Palacio de Cibeles. It was formerly the headquarters of the Post Office and now its cultural program leaves no one indifferent. When you finish, do not leave without going up to the viewpoint on the eighth floor of the building.

  • Go shopping on Madrid's Gran Vía and discover the Telefónica building, the first skyscraper built in Europe where they currently organize interesting exhibitions.

  • Buy lottery tickets at Doña Manolita and luck will be on your side. It’s the most awarded lottery in Spain!

  • Go for some beers at Sala Equis, a mythical space in Madrid where you can enjoy cinema, music and other cultural activities.

  • Buy tickets for the Teatro Español or for one of the musicals on the Gran Vía.

  • Discover the secret that hides the haberdashery Medias Puri, the trendy speakeasy in Madrid.

  • Visit the Museum of Illusions, right next to Puerta del Sol. It is the perfect plan to enjoy with children (and not so children) through a myriad of optical illusions.


Restaurants, bars and terraces in the center of Madrid



  • Indulge yourself in the San Ginés chocolate shop and taste the best chocolate with churros in Madrid.

  • Discover the Secret Garden of Salvador Bachiller, a natural oasis in the heart of Madrid perfect for having brunch.

  • Take a tapas tour starting at the famous Mercado de San Miguel.

  • If you need a break after a busy day in the center of Madrid, go up to the terrace of The Princial and have a drink watching the sunset surrounded by the incredible views of the city skyline.

  • End the day with a signature dining experience at the Sol Repsol award-winning Ático restaurant. Feel Madrid at your feet and let yourself be surprised by the most casual proposal of the prestigious chef Ramón Freixa through his tasting menu "De Madrid al cielo", which invites you to explore the best of Spanish gastronomy.


If you are planning your next visit to Madrid, book your accommodation now at The Principal 5* boutique hotel, located in the heart of the Gran Vía. Enjoy the most elegant Madrid, a luxury trip in the heart of the Spanish capital.


Download here our complete guide to Madrid with more recommendations on what to see and do in the city. 

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October 28, 2021

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