Living Like Royalty in Madrid

Ok so I’m pulling your leg with the whole living like “royalty” in Madrid, totally stayed in a cheap hostel, ate cheap meals, and did free activities (thank you tarjeta de extranjera!).

BUT THIS IS THE REASON WHY I FELT LIKE ROYALTY:

http://vimeo.com/63111221 (Click on the link…and feel free to check out the other videos from the concert as well)

That is correct, I got to see Mumford and Sons in concert while in Madrid.  BOO YA!

Pre-concert drinks with mis amigas guapas.

Pre-concert drinks with mis amigas guapas.

Some other cool peeps that share my love for Mumford.

Some other cool peeps that share my love for Mumford.

MUMFORD AND SONS.

MUMFORD AND SONS.

mind blown.

mind blown.

Literally this concert was one of the best I have been to.  Never in my wildest dreams would I have thought I would be able to see them.  When I told all of my co-workers at school that I was seeing this group I got blank stares and “Que?”…so really that tells you how NOT popular they are in Spain.

After that excitement was over, we explored Madrid.

Our first stop was the Riena Sofia Art museum, the contemporary art museum for Spanish artists.  It is home to Picasso and Dalí’s artwork.  My favorite part is that it houses Picasso’s Guernica, which represents life during Franco’s rule…don’t worry I won’t launch into that again, but you can see it’s a pretty dark painting.

La museo Riena Sofia.  In here is some great contemporary art.  There of course is Picasso and my new favorite Dalí

La museo Riena Sofia. In here is some great contemporary art from Spanish artist. There of course is Picasso and my new favorite Dalí.

Dalí everyone.  Fun fact, Dalí would sleep in a paper egg so that he could break out of it.  Que artsy.

Dalí, everyone. Fun fact, Dalí would sleep in a paper egg so that he could break out of it every morning. Que artsy.

La Guernica.

La Guernica.

Our next stop, of course, was Plaza Mayor.  The local hang out spot for Spaniards.

Fun facts about this plaza:

-It has had about a dozen different names in the past.

-The plaza was home to bull fights.

-During the Spanish Inquisition, prisoners condemned to death were put on trial and executed in this plaza.

-Most importantly you can feast on this amazing sandwich:

un bocadillo con calamari.  QUE DELICIOSO.

un bocadillo con calamari. QUE DELICIOSO.

Plaza Mayor.  This is an area where Spaniards meet to have a beer, tapas, coffee, calamari sandwhiches, and just meet people.  For us, it is the greatest spot to people watch.

Plaza Mayor. This is an area where Spaniards meet to have a beer, tapas, coffee, calamari sandwhiches, and just meet people. For us, it is the greatest spot to people watch.

Da group.

Da group.

This was HAND PAINTED!

This was HAND PAINTED!

see they do live like royalty here.

FUR ON YOUR CHAIR TO KEEP YOU WARM???See they do live like royalty here.

The next important stop in Madrid is the Mercado de San Miguel.  It’s an indoor food market (kind of similar to the one we went to in Barcelona, but classier), where little restaurants and bars serve different types of food.  All of the stalls look delicious.  To say we stuffed ourselves full is an understatement…we literally had NO self control.

This is our new friend Raul.  He managed to get us to buy these cheap bracelets by saying, "Usually I sell these for 10 euros, but for you, you Americans, I give for free.  However, I need coffee money..."  So there went 2 euros to a bracelet I will never wear.  Also the best part: "If you ever need me when you are in Madrid, just call 'RAULLLL' and I will be there."  We tried at one day, and no, he didn't come.

This is our new friend Raul. He managed to get us to buy these cheap bracelets by saying, “Usually I sell these for 10 euros, but for you, you Americans, I give for free. However, I need coffee money…” So there went 2 euros to a bracelet I will never wear.
Also the best part: “If you ever need me when you are in Madrid, just call ‘RAULLLL’ and I will be there.” We tried at one day, and no, he didn’t come.

Inside the market.

Inside the market.

Loving the market.  Literally eating my way through it.

Loving the market. Literally eating my way through it.

Enjoying the sun and this AMAZING Sangria.

Enjoying the sun and this AMAZING Sangria.

You think that is a lot?  I'm pretty sure I ate more than this.

You think that is a lot? I’m pretty sure I ate more than this.

Tomar el sol.

Once we literally couldn’t eaten any more, and enough people saw how American we were, we headed to the Royal Palace.

The royal palace.  The King and Queen and their two daughters live here.  Not as exciting as Buckingham palace.

The royal palace. The Royal Family doesn’t even live here. Not as exciting as Buckingham palace.

While taking a picture a man stopped us and said. "Saca una foto con mi perrito!"  So we did.

While taking a picture a man stopped us and said. “Saca una foto con mi perrito!” Pues, we did.

Some other great and interesting sites we saw:

Yes, I know it says MUSEO...but it is a restaurant chain.

Yes, I know it says MUSEO…but it is a restaurant chain.

El Rostro, the giant flee market.

El Rostro, the giant flee market.

We were serenaded EVERYWHERE we went.  But this had to be the cutest thing ever:  An older couple singing a love song to each other.

We were serenaded EVERYWHERE we went. But this had to be the cutest thing ever: An older couple singing a love song to each other.

The famous Madrid bear and the Strawberry tree.  This a symbol from the Middle Ages.  During that time there were many bears in the surrounding forests, so many bears that legend says that the city was named "Ursaria" (Land of Bears).

The famous Madrid bear and the Strawberry tree. This a symbol from the Middle Ages. During that time there were many bears in the surrounding forests, so many bears that legend says that the city was named “Ursaria” (Land of Bears).

The Crystal Palace.  This was built in 1887 to house plants from the Philippines.  Now it is an event hall.

The Crystal Palace. This was built in 1887 to house plants from the Philippines. Now it is an event hall.

The is restaurante Botín.  It is the oldest restaurant in all of Europe.  We didn't get a chance to eat there (the San Miguel Market was THAT good).  Ernest Hemmingway was a fan of this place durin ghis stay in Madrid.

The is restaurante Botín. It is the oldest restaurant in all of Europe. We didn’t get a chance to eat there (the San Miguel Market was THAT good). Ernest Hemmingway was a fan of this place during his stay in Madrid.

Although our trip to Madrid was short, I am not too worried because I will heading back there when my friends come to visit in May! So then I will give you the FULL tourist blog that you all are waiting for.  What’s next?  Our day trip to the BEAUTIFUL Salamanca!

One thought on “Living Like Royalty in Madrid

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