Culture

Did you know that a tiny bit of the Camino de Santiago exists between two Madrid metro stations?

Following the train tracks (and veering off them every now and again) reveals the industrial past of the Jarama Valley: current and disused railway infrastructure, an old fly-tipping zone (with a warning sign in pesetas!), bunkers and abandoned agricultural buildings. Dipping into Arganda, you can also visit a tiny barrio of only casas bajas with traditional door curtains and, of course, lots of storks.

Villa de Vallekas Fiestas in photos: fried food, fairground rides and stormy nights

After the hottest summer on record, the skies are filled with constant lightning and the fiesta grounds are intermittently flooding. But nothing can stop the smoke machines pluming into the neon lights of the fairground rides, or the pounding of reggaeton while families and friends bump each other on the dodgem dance floor. Here's a snapshot of the summer fiestas in Villa de Vallekas.

The demolition of Tetuán’s Neomudéjar heritage

Today, the demolition of this beautiful neomudéjar building in Tetuán will resume and, by the end of the week, the iconic 1925 workers' housing block will be gone forever, despite fierce resistance from the neighbourhood.

The little wicker shop in Villa de Vallecas

"This building was completed in 1970, that's around when my father moved his workshop in," explains Alberto Crespo Gutiérrez, who owns a small wicker workshop in Villa de Vallecas.

Preserving Tetuán’s Neomudejar workers’ housing

The creators of the grand and ornate red-brick buildings you can find all around Madrid are the same architects, builders and brick merchants who built the pretty little casas bajas in the barrios of Tetuán, Vallecas and Carabanchel. Look closely at Las Ventas bullring, one of Madrid's most famous examples of Moorish Revival architecture, and find the same intricate brickwork decorating little houses all around Madrid.

La Model: Barcelona’s city-centre prison is a model for historic memory

Welcome to La Model Prison, built 117 years ago on the then-outskirts of Barcelona. The city has expanded around it and Barcelona Sants Station, where the train from Madrid pulls in, is right in front. Inside, however, the prison remains exactly as it was the day inmates were relocated, just four years ago.

The story of a no-frills Gran Vía Hotel run by 81-year-old Delfina from Galicia

Gran Via number 12, a splendid white building dating back to 1914, has seen many things in its 107 years of history, including the Spanish Civil War. But, at ground level lives the legendary Bar Chicote, once crowned the best in the world by MTV in 2004. Its bar top has seated a long list of personalities including Ernest Hemingway, Sofia Loren and Salvador Dalí, as well as royalty, sports, politics and intellectualism.