Let this collection of offbeat finds inspire the new year’s resolution you never made: to slow down (or even stop) and look at the Madrid around you, and you might just see something you never knew was there.
Curiosity often gets the better of me, but I like to think I’m prepared for what lurks behind the curtain. In 2015, however, I was forbidden to look. The man inside the tiny ticket window told me: “Sorry love, this isn’t for you.”
Everyone loves a good old ‘did you know…?’ story, so here are six incredible historical discoveries that are still in evidence today. Store each of these old photographs in a primely positioned corner of your mind and walk the streets of Madrid seeing double. It might take you a while you get anywhere, but it’s unacceptable to be in a rush here anyway.
In the depths of the financial crisis, biologists Guillermo and Laura took over the neglected family olive grove and embarked on a risky project: to make farming a sustainable way of life once again.
Madrid is a complex city that likes to reveal itself slowly, keeping you in constant awe of its depths, expanse and infinite detail. The forgotten secrets, concealed corners and vibrant subcultures in just this city alone could keep you exploring for a lifetime, but here’s a good starting point.
There are few better ways to spend a Sunday in Madrid than strolling around El Rastro, but if you don’t have time to explore this 400-year-old market as many times as we have (possibly into three figures), then let us help you hit the ground running with seven of our most eccentric finds.
The best thing about exhibitions in La Tabacalera Promoción del Arte? They let you see inside this beautiful building. And the best kinds of exhibitions are the smaller, more subtle ones, opening up all corners and details of this 225-year-old industrial masterpiece.
We’re in a surreal time in Madrid, somewhere between crisis and post-crisis. With the economy in motion again, the city’s charming madrileño hum is being shattered by the crash-bang-drill-beep of construction work and, for a brief moment, a peculiar phenomenon is appearing.
Over five million people are buried, stacked and stored as ashes in Madrid’s biggest graveyard. La Almudena’s size and layout make it feel like more of a city than a cemetery: it has a historic centre, named streets, and neighbourhoods with different characters. You’ll find upmarket areas with mansions for the rich and famous, detached houses, workers’ apartment blocks, the poor neglected parts of the city and, last but not least, an anarchist squat.
Botellón is a favourite pastime in action, but it’s seriously testing the innate Spanish tolerance for noise and is causing friction across all of society.