Semana Santa in Madrid

If you are in Madrid for Semana Santa, you could not be visiting at a better time. Semana Santa is a week that attracts people from all over the world to take part in the Easter celebrations. Whether you are religious or not, this is a spectacular week. Try going to one of the concerts held in churches around the city or simply join the crowds to watch the processions go by. The week is sure to be great fun with an amazing atmosphere. Don´t forget that seeing the processions is just as important as trying some of the local delicacies that are traditionally eaten at this time of year!

Processions

The week leading up to Easter (from Palm Sunday to Easter Sunday) is full of street processions and sacred music in Madrid. Religious icons are taken from different churches and paraded around the city. Those who bear the heavy weight of the statues on their shoulders take enormous pride in doing so – it is a great honour to be a part of the processions. The most famous procession is the Christ of Medina  (Cristo de Medinaceli) on Good Friday (19th April) that starts at Jesús de Medinaceli Church and passes through the main streets of Madrid.

Other famous processions throughout the week include the Yeomen of the Guard (Alabarderos), the procession of silence and Jesus of Nazaret (Jesús Nazareno ´el pobre´).  Be sure to look up which processions you would like to see throughout the week so that you don´t miss any.

There will also be concerts playing sacred music, held in churches like Basilica of Nuestra Señora de Atocha, the Pontifical Basilica of San Miguel and the Parish Church of Santa Cruz.

On Easter Sunday (Domingo de Resurrección, 21th April), you can go to Plaza Mayor and see the famous Tamborrada – a show with hundreds of tambourines and drums. Well worth going to see!

You´ll also be pleased to know that on Easter Sunday in Spain too, chocolate eggs (huevos de chocolate) are commonly given to friends and family as a way of wishing them a happy Easter!

Gastronomy

One of the best ways to really embrace a new culture is to try the traditional food. What better way to learn more about the culture of Madrid than to try the local delicacies that are eaten at Easter.  Some of the most famous and delicious foods include:

  • Torrija (bread soaked in milk with cinnamon which is fried and sprinkled with sugar – very similar to ´French Toast´. It can even be soaked in wine!)

  • Soldaditos de Pavía – crispy fried cod
  • Flores de Semana Santa – sweet treat fried in the shape of a flower
  • Potaje de garbanzos a la madrileña – chickpea stew with potatoes, cod, spinach and hard-boiled eggs

The time and effort that that is put into the religious celebrations throughout this special week is astonishing – there really is an incredible display of colour, food, decorations, lights, costumes and religious icons. Semana Santa in Madrid is a must! You will not be disappointed.

Top 5 in Madrid: Sam

¡Hola! My name is Sam and in August 2018 I moved from The Netherlands to Madrid to complete my internship at Inhispania. The past 5 months I lived in and discovered this beautiful city. From museums to palaces and from parks to stadiums, Madrid offers it all. To be honest a top 5 is actually not enough for me to describe this beautiful city but below you will find my personal top 5 things to visit during your stay in Madrid!

#5 Palacio Real


If you are interested in palaces, you should definitely visit the Royal Palace of Madrid. This Royal Palace has 135,000 square meters of floor space and contains 3,418 rooms.

The palace is owned by the Spanish State and administered by the Patrimonio Nacional. Nowadays the palace is only used for ceremonies. It is nicely centrally located, in the western part of downtown Madrid.

The Palace, in the current state, is only 250 years old and it was built by order of King Felipe V. He gave the order to build the palace from limestone and granite because this ensured that the building was fireproof. Another interesting fact is that the design of the Royal Palace is based on the Palace of Versailles, where King Felipe spent most of his childhood.

Information about the Royal Palace of Madrid:
– Address: Calle Bailén, 28071 Madrid
– Opening hours: April to September from 10:00 – 20:00 and from October to March from 10:00 – 18:00.
– €10 entrance fee (discount for groups and students) and free entrance for people from EU-countries (18:00 – 20:00 from April to September) and (16:00 – 18:00 from October to March).

#4 Paseo del Prado


If you love art you should definitely visit the famous Museo del Prado. This museum, located next to the famous Retiro Park, houses works of art from the 14th to the 19th century. An absolute must go for every museum lover!

The designer of the building of the famous museum is architect Juan de Villanueva, he designed the building in 1785 in order of King Carlos III. From 1819 the museum is accessible to visitors.

The museum has recently been renovated and offers 22.000m2 extra space for new art collections. Originally the Museo del Prado was built to show the world how beautiful and important the Spanish art is. Nowadays the Museo del Prado houses around 1300 works of art and the types of art are baroque classicism, emotionalism and Pietism.

Information about Museo del Prado.
– Address: Calle Ruiz de Alarcón 23, 28014 Madrid
– Opening hours: Mondays to Saturdays from 10:00 – 20:00 and on Sundays from 10:00 – 19:00.
– Entrance fee: €10 (normal ticket), €23 (ticket + official guide) and €7 (ticket with discount).

#3 Plaza Mayor


Are you looking for a beautiful square then I would advice you to visit Plaza Mayor. Plaza Mayor is located in the heart of Madrid and it is worth a visit!

The name of this famous plaza has changed over the years. Originally it was called Plaza del Arrabal. In the middle of Plaza Mayor there is a huge statue of King Philips III, constructed in 1616.

In the past years the Plaza Mayor has been the scene of multitudinous events: Christmas markets, bull fights, soccer games and public executions. The Plaza Mayor is also a very touristic attraction, visited by thousands of people every year.

Tip: Try the Calamari sandwich; it is a culinary specialty in Madrid. This peculiar sandwich is composed of a bread bun opened up from one side, packed with calamari that are battered in flour and egg and then fried. The best Calamari sandwich is at Plaza Mayor.

#2 Retiro


Are you tired after a long day of strolling through the city? Or do you just need some relaxation during your stay in Madrid? Visit the Retiro Park! With over 15.000 trees and 125 hectares, the Retiro Park is a real oasis of green in the heart of Madrid. Inside the park you will find all kinds of monuments and gardens like: Jardín de Vivaces, the Jardines de Cecilio Rodriguez, Jardines del Arquitecto Herrero Palacios and the Parterre Francés, which holds a 400 year old conifer which is believed to be the oldest tree in Madrid.

You will also find a large artificial lake where you can enjoy the view and rent a rowing boat for the ultimate experience. On the east side you will find a big monument of King Alfonso XII and this part of the park is perfect to enjoy the sun.

Information about Retiro Park:
– Plaza de la Independencia, 7
– Opening hours: 06:00 – 00:00 (spring and summer) and 06:00 – 22:00 (autumn and winter)
– Prices for renting a rowing boat: 45 minutes = €5,80 (Mondays to Fridays) and €7,50 (Saturdays and Sundays)

#1 Estadio Santiago Bernabéu


My number 1 on the list is definitely the famous Estadio Santiago Bernabéu, the stadium of the best club in the world, Real Madrid. The experience is absolutely overwhelming. Whether you visit a live game or just go for a stadium tour, the atmosphere will be amazing.

The stadium has over 80,000 seats and was built between 1944 and 1947 and opened its door on December 14th and it received 5 stars from the UEFA (European Football Association). The first match was between Real Madrid and the Portuguese club Belenenses.

If you want to visit this beautiful football temple you pay €25 for a stadium tour and this is more than worth it. A stadium tour includes: panoramic view over the stadium, see all the trophies Real Madrid won in the ‘Trophy Room’, see the changing rooms and go through the player’s tunnel and benches.

Information about the stadium
– Opening hours: 10:00 – 19:00 (Mondays to Saturdays), 10:30 – 18:30 (Sundays and public holidays).
– Stadium tour takes 1,5 to 2 hours
– Ticket price €25,80

 

 

Daytrip to Segovia

¡Segovia is a great getaway destination from Madrid!

It is a small town not in the middle of the mountains of the Sierra de Guadarrama. It is well known for its aqueduct and for its gothic cathedral. In 1985 the city centered was declared world heritage by UNESCO. The aqueduct was built in the 2nd century and is known for its very little amount of concrete as component and how it holds itself independently.

Being at the north of Madrid and near the mountains, Segovia tends to be a little colder, however it also gives you fresher air and it can be a nice retreat from Madrid. You can go there just for a day on a bus. The closest station is Moncloa and you can get there for 10€ both ways and even just for a day! Itwill take between 1h15 and 2hours to get there depending on how many stops the bus has.

In Inhispania, we love to visit the city with our students.

Segovia has a lot of monasteries, convents and churches that you can visit on the top of the cathedral. The oldness of the city is charming and very pleasant for a week-end stroll around the Spanish authenticity. Its old spells attracts a lot of tourists, however it remains not as crowded as Madrid.  The typical food is “el cochinillo”,  the famous roast suckling pig.

Top 5 in Madrid: Koen

español:
¡Hola a todos! Me llamo Koen y durante algunos meses he sido becario en esta escuela, Inhispania. Antes de volver a Holanda, quise compartir con vosotros las cinco curiosidades más interesantes de Madrid. Os recomiendo visitar estos lugares siempre que sea posible. ¡Disfrutad!

inglés:
Hello everyone! I´m Koen and I was an intern at this school, Inhispania, for several months. Before returning back to the Netherlands, I wanted to share with you the five most interesting places of Madrid. I definitely advise you to visit these places whenever possible. Enjoy!

1-    Museo Nacional del Prado

 

Dirección / address / adres : Paseo del Prado, s/n, 28014, Madrid
Horarios / opening hours / openingstijden : lunes-sábado: 10:00 – 20:00, domingo: 10:00 – 19:00

español:
Si eres un amante de bellas artes, particularmente de distintas obras de pintores reconocidos como Velázquez, El Greco, Goya y Raphael, el Museo Nacional del Prado ofrece un recorrido inolvidable, a través de imágenes históricas, por el desarrollo de arte en todo el mundo. El museo es el más conocido de Madrid y la colección impresionante refuerza su posición como uno de los principales museos del arte de España. Además, es importante tener en cuenta que necesites al menos una mañana para recorrer todas las salas y admirar los cuadros más importantes. Si prefieres ir al museo por la tarde, tendrás la posibilidad para entrarlo gratis a partir de las seis de la tarde. Pronto te enamoras de la belleza de los cuadros y las estatuas cuando estás caminando por las salas y perderás la noción del tiempo.

inglés:
If you are a fine arts lover, particularly of various works by renowned painters such as Velázquez, El Greco, Goya and Raphael, the Prado Museum offers you an unforgettable journey, by means of historic images, through the evolution of art in the world. The museum is the most well-known one in all of Madrid and the impressive collection strengthens its position as one of the leading art museums in Spain. Furthermore, it is important to keep in mind that you should reserve at least one morning to walk through all the halls and admire the most important paintings. If you would rather go to the museum during the evening you will be able to enter for free starting at six in the evening. You will soon find yourself falling in love with the splendor of the paintings and statues as you are walking through the halls and you will lose all notion of time.

neerlandés:
Als je een kunstliefhebber bent, vooral van verschillende kunstwerken van beroemde schilders zoals Velázquez, El Greco, Goya en Raphael, biedt het Pradomuseum een onvergetelijke reis, met behulp van historische afbeeldingen, door de ontwikkeling van kunst wereldwijd. Het bekendste museum van Madrid huist een indrukwekkende collectie kunstwerken die zijn positie verstevigt als een van de vooraanstaande kunstmusea in Spanje. Het is bovendien belangrijk voor ogen te houden dat je een dagdeel nodig zult hebben om alle zalen te bezoeken en de belangrijkste schilderijen te bewonderen. Mocht je liever ´s avonds een bezoek brengen, kun je het museum vanaf 18:00 gratis bezoeken. Je zult spoedig verliefd worden op de pracht en praal van de schilderijen en standbeelden zodra je door de zalen van het museum loopt en je zult de tijd volledig uit het oog verliezen.

2-    Parque de El Retiro

Dirección / address / adres : Plaza de la Independencia, 7, 28001, Madrid

español:
Madrid es famosa por su animada vida nocturna con excelentes discotecas, bares y festivales todo el año. En este epicentro de festividades encuentras un oasis de tranquilidad en el parque de El Retiro. Con 125 hectáreas y más de 15.000 árboles, este parque es un remanso verde en el centro de Madrid. El Retiro es uno de los sitios favoritos, de los turistas y los madrileños, para ir a pasear y para practicar deporte. Si te gusta ir en bicicleta como a mi, puedes alquilar una bicicleta en los alrededores para disfrutar del parque sobre ruedas. Si entras por la Puerta de Alcalá verás el estanque artificial donde puedes alquilar barcas de remos o hacer un pequeño tour colectivo. Además, un monumento impresionante dedicado a Alfonso XII, y el Palacio de Cristal están situados en este parque.

inglés:
Madrid is famous for its vibrant nightlife with excellent clubs, bars and all-year-round festivals. In this epicenter of festivities you will find an oasis of peace in El Retiro Park. Spanning just over 125 hectares and with more than 15,000 trees, this park is a green haven in the Madrid city center. El Retiro is one of the favorite destinations to enjoy a walk and exercise for both tourists and locals. If you enjoy cycling like me you can hire a bicycle near the park for an enjoyable ride. If you enter the park from Puerta de Alcalá, you will see a lake where you can hire rowing boats or take a group tour. Furthermore, an impressive monument dedicated to Alfonso XII and the Cristal Palace are located in this park.

neerlandés:
Madrid staat bekend om zijn bruisend nachtleven met geweldige discotheken, cafés en festivals die het hele jaar door plaatsvinden. In dit epicentrum van festiviteiten vind je een oase van rust in het Retiropark. Als het groene hart van de stad bestrijkt het park meer dan 125 hectare en heeft meer dan 15.000 bomen. Retiro is een van de favoriete bestemmingen voor zowel toeristen als Madrilenen om een heerlijke wandeling te maken of om te sporten. Als je net zo dol bent op fietsen als ik, kun je een fiets huren nabij het park voor een ontspannende rit. Als je het park binnenloopt vanaf Puerta de Alcalá, zul je een meer zien waar je een roeiboot kunt huren of een groepsrondleiding kunt volgen. Een indrukwekkend monument, toegewijd aan Alfonso XII, en het Glazen Paleis zijn eveneens te bezichtigen in dit park.

3-    El restaurante Bresca

Dirección / address / adres : Calle de los Tres Peces, 20, 28012, Madrid
Horarios / opening hours / openingstijden : lunes-domingo: 12:00 – 02:00

español:
¿Estás cansado después un duro día de estudiar español y no sientes deseos de cocinar por la tarde? No te preocupes, el restaurante Bresca es la alternativa perfecta. Espero que te guste la comida italiana tanto como a mi, ya que este restaurante ofrece platos típicos de la zona de Bolonia, como los tortellini y la crema de mascarpone. El personal es muy amigable y se toma su tiempo para explicarte la carta. Aunque el restaurante es bastante pequeño, el ambiente es muy agradable y acogedor. Su menú ofrece una deliciosa variedad de bocaditos italianos, pastas y postres. La especialidad de la casa es la lasaña que puedo asegurarte que está muy rica. Te recomendo comer en Bresca y disfrutar de una buena noche.

inglés:
Are you tired after a long day of studying Spanish and don´t feel like cooking tonight? You don´t have to worry, because the restaurant Bresca is the perfect alternative. I hope you love Italian food as much as I do, since this restaurant offers local dishes from Bologna. The staff is very friendly and they take their time to explain the menu to you. Although the restaurant is fairly small, the atmosphere is very pleasant and cozy. The menu offers a delicious variety of Italian sandwiches, pastas and desserts. The specialty of the house is lasagne which I can assure you is really good. I would recommend you to eat in Bresca and enjoy a lovely night.

neerlandés:
Ben je uitgeput na een lange dag vol lessen Spaans en heb je geen zin meer om te koken? Maak je maar geen zorgen, want het restaurant Bresca is het perfecte alternatief. Ik hoop dat je net zoveel van Italiaans eten houdt als ik, aangezien dit restaurant lokale gerechten uit de streek Bologna serveert. Het personeel is zeer vriendelijk en ze nemen de tijd om het menu uit te leggen. Alhoewel het restaurant vrij klein is, voelt de sfeer zeer warm en gezellig aan. Het menu biedt o.a. heerlijke Italiaanse broodjes, pastas en toetjes. Specialiteit van het huis is de lasagne en ik kan je verzekeren dat je ervan zult smullen. Ik zou je daarom graag aanbevelen om een keer te gaan eten in Bresca en te genieten van een prachtige avond.

4-    Madrid Teleférico

Dirección / address / adres : Paseo del Pintor Rosales, s/n, 28008, Madrid
Horarios / opening hours / openingstijden : lunes-domingo: 11:00 – 18:00

español:
El Teleférico de Madrid ofrece tanto a turistas como a madrileños la oportunidad de sobrevolar la parte más verde de la ciudad y contemplar desde el aire su parte más histórica. Además de ofrecer unas vistas panorámicas inmejorables, el Teleférico es un medio de transporte rápido y sostenible para llegar al corazón de la Casa de Campo. Allí puedes disfrutar del Parque de Atracciones, uno de los recintos de ocio urbano más completos de España, con 48 atracciones para todos los gustos y edades. Este inusual medio de transporte hace un recorrido de 2,5 km (unos 11 minutos) entre dos estaciones: La Rosaleda, en la calle Pintor Rosales esquina con Marqués de Urquijo, y La Casa de Campo. Sobrevolar Madrid ¨tocando¨ las copas de los árboles supone un viaje único y especial, en un medio de transporte familiar, ecológico y divertido.

inglés:
The Madrid Teleférico, a cable car, offers both tourists and residents the chance to fly over the greenest area of the city and gaze at the most historical parts of Madrid. The cable car doesn´t only offer one of the most evocative views you will be able to find, but is also a quick and sustainable means of transport leading to the heart of the Casa de Campo where you can enjoy many recreational activities thanks to a nearby amusement park, one of the largest parks of Spain, with 48 attractions there´ll surely be excitement for young and old. This unusual means of transport takes 11 minutes to cover a distance of roughly 1.5 mile (2.5 km) between its two stations: La Rosaleda (located at the corner of the street Pintor Rosales and the street Marqués de Urquijo) and La Casa de Campo. Flying over Madrid as you ¨touch¨ the tree tops will result in a unique and special experience in a family-friendly, ecological and fun means of transport.

neerlandés:
De kabelbaan Teleférico brengt zowel toeristen als Madrilenen naar het hoogste punt van Madrid terwijl je boven het groenste gedeelde van de stad zweeft en vanuit de lucht het meest historische stadsdeel aanschouwt. Je zult niet alleen van een onvergetelijk panoramisch uitzicht genieten, maar eveneens gebruikmaken van snel en duurzaam vervoer naar het hartje van Casa de Campo. Hier vinden namelijk veel recreatieve activiteiten plaats, mede dankzij een nabijgelgen pretpark met meer dan 48 attracties, waardoor er zeker voor elk wat wils is. Het traject van dit uitzonderlijk vervoersmiddel bestrijkt 2,5 km (ongeveer 11 minuten) tussen twee stations: La Rosaleda (gelegen op de hoek van de straten Pintor Rosales en Marqués de Urquijo) en Casa de Campo. Scheer rakelings over de boomkruinen en geniet van een unieke ervaring in een duurzaam en leuk vervoersmiddel geschikt voor het hele gezin.

5-    Mercado de San Antón

Dirección / address / adres : Calle de Augusto Figueroa, 24B, 28004, Madrid
Horarios / opening hours / openingstijden : lunes-domingo: 10:00 – 24:00

español:
En pleno Chueca, el Mercado de San Antón es una caja de sorpresas que merece la pena visitar. El mercado consta de tres plantas. La primera de ellas está dedicada a la venta de productos frescos, por ejemplo frutas, verduras, pescado, especias y quesos. La segunda planta está compuesta por una taberna-vinoteca y diez puestos de show cooking o para llevar en los que es posible degustar y llevarse a casa desde especialidades griegas hasta comida japonesa, marisco, dulces, batidos y zumos. Esta planta cuenta también con la Sala Trapezio, que acogerá diferentes iniciativas culturales. En la tercera planta se ubica el restaurante La Cocina de San Antón donde se pueden comer los productos adquiridos previamente en los puestos de la primera planta por un suplemento de unos euros. El restaurante ofrece un menú diario a mediodía y una amplia carta basada en productos frescos y naturales propios de temporada.

inglés:
San Antón Market, in the heart of the Chueca neighbourhood, never fails to amaze its visitors. The market has three floors of which the first displays mainly fresh products, such as fruits, vegetables, fish, spices and cheese. The second floor boasts a tavern-wine bar and ten stalls providing show cooking and takeaway services, offering you the chance to taste and take home Greek dishes, Japanese food, seafood, sweets, milkshakes and juices. On this floor you will also find the hall Sala Trapezio which is used for cultural activities. On the third floor is the restaurant Cocina de San Antón where customers can eat their goods previously bought on the first floor for an extra charge of several euros. The restaurant offers a daily lunch menu and a dining menu based upon seasonal fresh and natural products.

neerlandés:
De overdekte markt San Antón, midden in de wijk Chueca, is altijd de moeite waard om te bezoeken. De markt bestaat uit drie verdiepingen, waarvan de eerste een aantal kraampjes heeft met een breed aanbod aan verse producten, zoals fruit, groente, vis, specerijen en kazen. De tweede verdieping heeft een tapperij-wijnspeciaalzaak en tien kraampjes met show cooking en afhaaldienst waar je zoal Grieks kunt proeven, Japans eten, schaal- en schelpdieren, zoetigheid, milkshakes en sapjes. Deze verdieping huisvest ook de evenementenhal Sala Trapezio, een centrum waar verscheidene culturale activiteiten plaatsvinden. Op de derde verdieping is het restaurant Cocina de San Antón waar men de reeds gekochte producten van de eerste verdieping voor een extra toeslag van enkele euro´s kan laten bereiden. Het restaurant heeft een lunchkaart en een dagkaart die voornamelijk gericht is op verse seizoensproducten en biologische producten.

Christmas in Madrid!

You can truly celebrate Christmas and New Year’s Eve in Madrid and experience a wonderful time. During these holidays there is a lot going on in the city: Christmas markets, holiday lights, nativity scenes and the Three Kings Parade, Madrid offers it all!

The Holidays in Madrid start on the 22nd of December with the famous “El Gordo”. El Gordo is the Spanish Christmas Lottery and it is by far the biggest lottery draw in the country, everybody plays and the prizes are very big. This Spanish tradition is broadcasted live on the television.

In the different parts of Spain they have different traditions, but the most important days of the festivities are: December 24th, December 25th, December 31st and January 5th-6th.

December 24th: Christamas Eve

Families come all together to have a generous and nice dinner and afterwards young people go party.

 December 25th: Christamas 

People come together again for an extensive lunch, mostly containing fish, shellfish and some sweet products.

December 31st : New Year’s Eve

The 31st of December is called ‘Nochevieja’. Families come together to enjoy dinner and at midnight they eat the grapes. Everybody watch the TV where you can see a clock bell (the most famous one is in Puerta del Sol) which strokes 12 times (12 seconds). With every stroke, a grape is eagerly worked in the mouth, which guarantees happiness in the future. After midnight people go to parties and this can last until the early hours.

And this is not the end of the holidays because in Spain there is also a holiday called ‘Los Reyes Magos’ which can be translated as the Three Kings. People celebrate it with Christmas songs, festive lights and a festive procession, this last one on the 5th of January. The kings drive through the streets on horses or in festive cars and throw goodies to the children. That night, the children go to bed early the morning after find all the presents the kings left for them. The 6th of January is always a holiday so all the children can play with their new toys. The tipical food for this festivity is called the Roscón de Reyes (a round cake decorated with fruits).

Christmas markets close to Inhispania

In Madrid there are several Christmas markets (Mercados de Navidad in Spanish). You will find them all over the city and some of them are very close to our school. Christmas markets tend to open at around midday and normally close between 21:00 and 22:00. You will find the 3 best Christmas markets below:

1.The Plaza Mayor Christmas market.
With Christmas, Plaza Mayor becomes a huge market where you can find all types of Nativity Scenes figures and Christmas musical instrumentals. This year, this Christmas market is open from the 24th of December to the 31st of December and it is all free.

2. Plaza de Callao Christmas market.
Every year, Plaza Callao is a huge spectacle during Christmas. The local department store (El Corte de Inglés) installs a huge tree on the square, perfect for the ideal festive selfie! Here you can also shop for your Christmas decorations.

3. Mercadillo de la Plaza de Jacinto Benavente.
Just 300 meters from Sol you will find Plaza de Jacinto Benavente, at this square there is an annual craft market during Christmas. Here you will enjoy over 20 Christmas huts, Christmas decorations and beautifully handcrafted accessories.

¡FELIZ NAVIDAD Y FELIZ AÑO NUEVO!