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Europe Trip: Madrid, Spain


This is my first stop to a whirlwind Euro-trip within the time span of two weeks.

Madrid, Spain 

Coming off from a dizzying long haul flight of Sydney to Abu Dhabi - Abu Dhabi to Madrid we finally arrived to our first destination of Madrid stopping at the Adolfo Suárez Madrid–Barajas Airport. 

Although the train could be an otherwise cheapest option to go towards the Downtown Madrid area - we opted for the lazy route of a taxi. Within about 25-30 minutes or so, we were stopped in front of our Hostal close to Atocha Station. 

Atocha is a great area to stay upon accomodation wise as you are in the midst of walking distance to great landmarks, shops and parks and within walking distances from their largest railway station - Atocha station - to get to where you need to be with intercity and regional routes.
Leaving our bags behind for the Hostal we firstly went to find our first meal in Madrid. Walking down, we happened to stumble upon the cafes opposite the Reina Sofia Art Museum's Sabatini entrance (rather than the newer wing known as Nouveau entrance building.) and decided to spend our waiting time for the room by a brunch meal and concession tickets for the museum. 

Taking an al fresco table overlooking the square of the art museum gave us a birds' eye view of all passersby along with the flock of pigeons hoping to find a snack left over by the cafe goers.
Breadsticks and beers in supply, we order ourselves some pasta from this restaurant called "Pinocchio Trattoria" that is directly opposite the museum's entrance across the square with a vast menu of pizza, pasta, anti pasti and risotto dishes. Yes... we went to an Italian place in Madrid and you must be thinking... SOPHIE! why not something else like uhm... Paella?! #facepalm.
Nevertheless, with ample amount of breadsticks, fresh sliced baguettes and pasta needless to say we were got enough carbs out of it and was ready to walk it all off. 
Entering the museum we walked around the long hallways of the old building under tall arches and sandstone walls. Long exhibition rooms held various artworks, but the grand prize and main pull of the tourists undoubtedly would be for Picasso's works on show such as his famed "Guernica" piece.

Next morning, we started off at Maestro Churrero with a cup of Café con leche (coffee with milk), freshly squeezed orange juice and some crunchy spanish churros that was dusted with confectioners sugar soon after I took the photos along with our breakfast of two eggs and bacon.

This store looks fabulous with so many delicious treats - savoury and sweet! They had breakfast, churros, ice cream and chocolates, pastries and sandwiches.. the whole lot all in array and plenty to choose from within a great spot close by to a theatre.

Madrid's most popular open spaced central square is the Plaza Mayor with the timeless looking cobblestone laneways and beautiful architecture of its surrounds. Plenty of restaurants line up the square with multiple cuisine offerings and being on a weekend the pop-up local vendors were selling off their antiquities of coins, photographs and different odds and ends that made me think, "what is this doing here?" for sale. 

In the middle of all this commotion was a monument (didn't catch the name!) and also a modern 'maze-like walkway' lined up with plastic bottles in bags. We walked through the bottled maze, which lead in and out towards the nobleman and his horse.
Much to any foodie's delight there is the wonderful Mercado de San Miguel which is a food market which serves tapas-style snacks and stocks up on plenty of good food and fine wines. I was fascinated by the charcuterie (pictured) and the cheap-a-cheap wines by the glasses as well as the huge red-blushing strawberries for sale!
Back towards Atocha station, we had our last lunch at a corner cafe (the name escapes me..) during mid-afternoon when the sun was blaring hot and humid. We sat al fresco again, facing a round-a-bout which you can see the Atocha station's big curvy top of the building, a bit of the Reina museum and cars veering by. This time we had some spanish beers "Mahou" and I ate a simple yet easy to manage chorizo and fresh bageuette for lunch. This one had a shaded cover with spritzing streams of water to cool you off intermittently whilst you battle on with the Spanish heat which helps.

What's going to be my next European destination? See if you can guess!


  1. I don’t know how should I give you thanks! I am totally stunned by your article. You saved my time. Thanks a million for sharing this article.

  2. Good post, love this sharing so much, thank you!