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Madrid Guide

We’ve been big fans of Madrid for a long time and we think it’s once of the finest places to spend a hen weekend in the whole of Europe! There’s so much to see and do here that it’s pretty much impossible to fit it all in. Follow our guide to the best stuff the city has to offer and really get your fill.

Getting In


Unsurprisingly, aeroplane is far and away the best mode of transport when you want to travel to Madrid. It’s only about 2 hours away in the air and loads of budget airlines travel to the Spanish capital from just about any airport in the UK. Book up early and get some great prices!


This option is expensive and time consuming but if you really don’t like flying, it is possible to travel to Madrid from the UK by train. You and the girls would have to get yourselves to St. Pancras in London, take the train through France and then to the centre of Spain. Told you it was long-winded – but the views are fantastic.


This also takes a pretty long time but ferries from Plymouth and Portsmouth to Santander and Bilbao in the North of Spain run frequently. From here, take a train, coach or drive to Madrid.

Main Sights

Prado Museum

Interestingly, this tourist destination is the largest art gallery in the world, housing no less than 7,600 pieces! The permanent collection features works from all manner of important Spanish painters and sculptors, as well as travelling and visiting pieces. Even if you’re not considered art fans, we really think you’ll enjoy this cultural experience.

Museo Nacional Centro de arte Reina Sofia

It’s not all about art in Madrid, honest but this one’s well worth a mention. Home to great Spanish contemporary art from all through the ages, here you can see Picasso’s iconic Guernica, a breathtakingly huge tribute to the Spanish civil war of the time.

Palacio Real de Madrid

Fans of history, royalty and splendour must visit this gorgeous palace. Known also as the Oriental palace, it’s still used by the reigning king for ceremonial purposes and is host to wonderful collections of pottery, silverware and artwork – and it’s the largest palace in Europe!

Plaza Mayor

Seriously, don’t leave Madrid without seeing this beautiful city square. Lined with tall houses on either side and pointed spires on every corner, you can enjoy drinks, food and simply just a good hour to appreciate the stunning architecture here.


There’s a whole lot of delicious dishes to try in Madrid which are famous in the country as a whole and the city specifically. Tuck in!


Steadily gaining popularity outside of Spain, churros are the ultimate indulgent treat. Resembling very long, very thin deep-fried doughnuts, they’re dipped in thick chocolate and enjoyed traditionally for breakfast – but they’re great any time of the day!

Gambas al ajillo

This dish is really popular in Madrid and comes as a sizzling hot plate of juicy prawns cooked with garlic. The Spanish really know how to cook seafood, so be sure to give this a try.

Bocadillo de calamares

This might sound a little odd but it’s available in every bar and café over Madrid and it’s absolutely delicious. A big crusty baguette is stuffed full of crispy squid rings and consumed alongside a cold beer.

Patatas bravas

One of the most popular dishes in the whole of Spain and indeed across the whole of the world as an import, crispy, yummy potatoes are drowned in a spicy tomato sauce to form the kind of food which would suit a hangover down to the ground.

Useful Phrases

Many people in Madrid will speak good English but not everyone. It’s polite and also pretty fun to try and learn a couple of Spanish phrases yourself for use on your hen weekend!

Good morning – buenas dias
Do you speak English? – hablas Ingles?
I am English – soy Ingles
I am lost – estoy perdido
Beer – cerveza
Wine – vino
We are thirsty – tenemos sed
My friend is getting married – mi amiga se va a casar
Nice to meet you – encantada/encantado (female/male)

FCO travel advice

Travel Safety & Information

For information on staying safe and healthy while travelling abroad as well as local laws and latest government advice on destinations visit the FCO Travel Aware website.

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