[Trip] Spain – A day trip in Madrid city central

Where to visit if you have only one day in Madrid? After checking out where are the must see places and yet we can do some shopping at Gran Via. We decided to visit the Retiro Park, whereby it is accessible to the few most photographed buildings and monuments in Madrid.

Retiro Park (Parque del Retiro)

Our first stop for the day, Retiro Park (Parque del Retiro) is one of the largest parks in Madrid.

You will be in for a wonderful time in the magnificent park, filled with beautiful sculpture, lake and monuments.


Plaza de la Independencia, 7, 28001 Madrid, Spain

How to get there?


1, 2, 9, 14, 15, 19, 20, 26, 28, 32, 51, 52, 61, 63, 74, 146, 152, 202, C


Retiro (L2)




1-2 Hours

What to do?

Brunch at the cafe in the park

Baby eel with the smoked salmon sandwich. It was my first time eating baby sea eel and I like it a lot.

Enjoying our brunch with the view from the cafe:

Have a walk in the park

Monument to Alfonso XII at the lake. Visitors can also rent the rowboat to paddle in the lake and free to feed the fish in the pond as well as just sitting by the lake to see the ducks paddling in the water.


It was a good morning walk in the park, it was relaxing and we enjoyed people watching. The park is so huge that we did not have enough time to explore this place, if you want to walk to every corner of the park, very likely it will take you one day.

Gran Via District

The walking path after leaving Retiro Park, to make it easier for reference I have marked all the places that are worth stopping and taking photos here ⇓.

Puerta de Alcalá

One of the well-known monument in Madrid, once the main entrance to the city. Now it is located near to the main entrance of Retiro Park (Parque del Retiro).

If you have the chance to go close to the monument, you might want to take note of the statues on the top, they represent four cardinal virtues, Prudence, Justice, Temperance, and Fortitude


5-10 Minutes (Photo Taking)


You do not need to cross the road as the monument can be seen from the entrance of the park.

Plaza de Cibeles

Formerly the Palace of Communication, now known as the Madrid City Hall.

It is one of the icon in Madrid which most of the visitors will visit and it is popular among Real Madrid’s fans. This is because whenever their team wins an important match, they will be having the celebration at the fountain.


5-10 minutes (Photo taking)


If you have time to spare, feel free to visit the centro centro , there are lots of things to see inside, for instance, an exhibition hall, glass gallery, and an observation deck to have a view of the square (Entrance fee apply).

Metropolis Building

The iconic building in Madrid.

A little background on the building, the designers were French brothers, Jules and Raymond Février. Therefore, the building was in Beaux-Arts style, which consists of the elegant French style with conservative lines and amazing sculpture. The building was under renovation when we were there in 2015.




5-10 Minutes (Photo Taking)


It was a pity that when we went the building is under renovation in 2015. However, the metropolis building now is as good as new with a new painting coat. The view of the building will be even more beautiful at night when the lights lit up.

Gran Via Shopping Street

If you need to get your shopping fix, this is one of the most lively shopping streets in Madrid. Definitely not to be missed if you enjoy shopping.


1-2 Hours (Might be even longer if you love to shop)

The Primark here was so huge that we spent a long time inside, have fun shopping at the Gran via street, it has all the shops you want to find, you name it they have it here.

Puerta Del Sol

A public square in Madrid where the famous clock tower and the old Post Office is situated. There are lots of restaurants, bars and street artist here.


2 Hours

Find the Kilometer Zero here:

To note:

Please be on high alert for pickpockets in this area. This place is crowded at night, it is an interesting place where there were street performers and mascots walking around.


You can continue your shopping spree here, and if you are craving for some food or to try some local snacks, here would be a perfect place to be.

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