September 14, 2019


by Steve W

Raton Perez is a cultural icon in the Hispanic culture, similar to the tooth fairy.

We took the train from Malaga to Madrid, then took the subway into town. Unfortunately, the station at our stop was under construction, so we got off at the next stop and had to walk a mile back to our hotel, the Circulo Gran Via, on the main drag in town and connected to a casino (which we did not enter).

We walked around town, through the Plaza Mayor, where there is a plaque in the sidewalk showing the geographic center of Spain.

And the center of my world!
The Plaza is surrounded by colorful buildings, and has several statues and some advertising for Tio Pepe, a locally produced sherry.

King Carlos III

Tio Pepe, the sherry of Kings
On our way to the Royal Palace, we passed the Catedral de la Almudena, a baroque Catholic cathedral known for its colorful chapels, plus a Romanesque crypt and museum. As with many of the churches in Europe, there is a large statue of Pope John Paul.

El Papa
The Royal Palace was magnificent, with an expansive courtyard and the usual array of artworks, tapestries and weaponry

Although Columbus was Italian, it was Ferdinand and Isabella, King and Queen of Spain,
 who financed his trips to the New World

As we were there in mid-December, there was a large nativity scene that took up an entire room

Two of the most popular museums are the Prado and the Reina Sofia, but no photos were allowed in either, so you will have to take our word for it.

On our last day, we went to Retiro Park, which has a large lake in the middle and an enormous tribute to King Alfonso XII, with many sculptures as part of the display.

Inside the park is The Crystal Palace, a building made of glass panels.

No one throwing stones here!
As we were leaving the park we came across the Fountain of the Fallen Angel.

We enjoyed our time in Madrid and looked forward to our next stop, Barcelona.

We were here in mid-December, 2018.

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1 comment >>

  1. What a beautiful post. Thanks for sharing. I especially like that you're sprinkling these wonderful surprise memories at unexpected moments.


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