Top 5: Natasha

El viajero

This is one of my favourite rooftop terraces. It is perfect for a sunny weekend lunch or drinks in the evening after work, in the lively neighbourhood of La Latina. It´s a great place to go and relax after a hectic time in El Rastro market. While it may not have a panoramic view of the city, it still has a cool view of La Latina and a great atmosphere.

Caixa forum

Caixa forum is a cultural center on Paseo del Prado that hosts temporary exhibitions. It always has some kind of interesting and exciting social work exhibition on. One I went to was a really thought-provoking photographic exhibition on different humanitarian crises. It is definitely worth a visit and once you´re done, you can head to the café for a nice sit down and a cup of coffee. Don´t forget to look at the vertical garden! 

Casa de Campo

If you want to escape the buzzing cosmopolitan life, then this is as close as you´ll get without having to leave the city! It is a huge park in Madrid, and one of the biggest in Europe too, with lots of woodland, making it feel like you are in the countryside. You can get there either by cable car (El Teleférico) or by metro. There is also a public pool open in summer, a big lake with restaurants alongside it and even a theme park!

Pez tortilla

Malasaña is one of my favourite neighbourhoods in Madrid and one of my favourite streets is called Calle de la Pez. On this street you´ll find one of the best tortilla places in Madrid! You can choose from a range of unique and exciting flavours of both tortilla and croquettes. To top it off, they offer a selection of artisanal beers that go rather nicely with your meal. It´s always very busy so if you don´t have luck there, then try the other Pez Tortilla in La Latina.

Pantano de San Juan

With Madrid being in the centre of Spain, there is a lack of places to go to cool yourself down when it gets too hot! This hidden gem is a man-made beach, at San Juan reservoir and is just an hour´s coach ride away (and free if you have the youth transport card). Here you can pay to do watersports, or just simply relax on the beach and have a swim in the reservoir. There is a cafe there if you´re in need of an ice cream or else bring a picnic with you as it’s an idyllic setting!

Best summer plans in Madrid

It may be hot outside, but that shouldn´t stop you from having a great time! Here are some of our favourite things to do in Madrid in the summer.

Casa de Campo Lake

It´s hard to believe that this oasis is just a few metro stops away from the centre of Madrid; you could say it´s an escape from the city, within the city. Sitting by the lake is a lovely way to spend the afternoon, but if you fancy something more energetic, why not hire a boat? The lake even has a fountain in the middle to cool you down!

Metro: Lago (L10), Puerta del Ángel (L6)

When: Mon-Sun, 08:30-sunset

Price: Mon-Fri 6 €, Sat-Sun 8 € (45 min)

Veranos de la Villa 2019

This annual festival lasts all summer (28th June – 1st September) and fills every corner of the city with cultural activities. It´s a great way to enjoy a cultural experience outside of the typical indoor setting, as the events are held outdoors in parks, swimming pools, cultural centres and squares. Even better, 90% of the activities are free!

See the full programme: https://veranosdelavilla.madrid.es/es/programa

Veranos de la Villa

Open-air cinema

What better way to spend a summer evening than to sit back, relax and enjoy a film under the night sky?  Two of our favourites are Cine de Verano Conde Duque and Cibeles de Cine, which offer a wide variety of films, and all at a reasonable price.

Conde Duque:

When: 22:00, Mon-Sat until 7th September

Ticket price: 6 € / 3 € on Wednesday

See the full programme: https://www.condeduquemadrid.es/actividades/cine-de-verano-conde-duque-0

Cibeles de Cine:

When: 22:00, Mon-Sun until 12th September (closed 6th & 7th July)

Ticket price: 6 €

See the full programme: https://www.mk2sunsetcinema.es/film_category/cibeles-de-cine/

Swimming pools

In Madrid we may not have a beach, but we do have swimming pools! If the heat is just too much, you can always cool off in one of the 20 municipal swimming pools which are open until 22nd September.  One of our favourites is the Centro Deportivo Municipal Vicente del Bosque, which features two 50m pools as well as a children´s pool. Prepare yourself for a shock when you jump in, though, as the water is freezing!

Centro Deportivo Municipal Vicente del Bosque:

Metro: Barrio del Pilar (L9), Begoña (L10)

When: Mon-Sun 11:00-21:00

For more information on outdoor pools in Madrid: https://www.esmadrid.com/piscinas-de-verano-en-madrid

Swimming pools in Madrid

Madrid’s best rooftop bars

Tired of all the museum visits and long walks? Looking for beautiful views over the city of Madrid? Roof terraces will offer you the solution! The views over Madrid are impressive and there are a lots all over the city, from fancy and exclusive ones to local and folksy ones. Below you will find the 5 best roof terraces in Madrid.

5. Gau & Café

The Gau & Café is a hidden gem, located in the brisk and multicultural area of Lavapiés. The restaurant is located inside an ancient monument that is part of a national heritage, 500 meter from the heart of Madrid.

On the roof you will find a restaurant area (Mediterranean cuisine) and a part where you can enjoy a drink. The best time of the day to visit the terrace is during sunset, the atmosphere is enchanting by then! Certainly worth to mention is that this roof terrace is not as expensive as, for example hotel roof terraces.

Where: C/ Tribulete 14, fourth floor. Metro: Lavapiés.
Opening hours: Open the whole year. Mondays to Fridays from 11 – 23.30. Saturday from 13.30, closed on Sundays.

4. La Terraza del Urban

The fanciest roof terrace on the list is definitely La Terraza del Urban. You are already warned because it is part of a 5 star hotel. This 5 star hotel is located a stone’s throw from the Spanish Parliament and offers supreme quality, from luxury cocktails to quality tapas (caviar and oysters for example). For a tapa and a cocktail you will pay around €25 and twice a week they offer live music shows.

Where: Carrera de San Jerónimo, 34. Metro: Sol
Opening hours: Wednesdays to Saturdays from 11:00 to 03:00 and from Sundays to Tuesdays from 11:00 to 02:00.

3. Hotel Óscar

In the Chueca district you will find Hotel Óscar. This fancy hotel has a luxury swimming pool, lounge beds, cocktail tables and a beautiful panorama over the highest buildings of Madrid.

The entrance to the roof terrace is free but do not be shocked by the high prices for drinks and snacks. For a normal juice you will normally pay around €5. Using the pool costs €40 a day or €20 for half a day.

Where: Plaza Vázquez de Mella, 12. Metro: Chueca
Opening hours: 24/7

 2. Café el Viajero

This tropical roof terrace is located in the trendy area of La Latina, very close to the 2 most famous tapas streets of Madrid, Cava Alto and Cava Baja. The bar resemblance to a reggae-beach bar and normally reaches younger audience. You’ll get an amazing view of the basilica of San Francisco el Grande!

Where: Plaza de la Cebada, 11. Metro: La Latina
Opening hours: Tuesdays to Thursdays from 17:00 to 00:30. Fridays: 15:00 to 01:30. Saturdays: 12:00 to 01:30 and Sundays: 12:00 to 00:30.

1. La Terraza del Círculo de Bellas Artes

According to many Madrileños, the Círculo de Bellas Artes has the best roof terrace in Madrid. It is very close to our school, Inhispania, and for only €4 you can visit the roof terrace of this impressive building. Furthermore, the location (close to Plaza Cibeles and next to Banco de España) is excellent!

From the rooftop you have a beautiful view over the Retiro Park, Plaza Cibeles, the city hall, Paseo del Prado, the Prado museum and the Alcalá street. Go enjoy the view over ‘Madrid by night’ while chilling on one of the loungers and drinking a cocktail!

Where: Plaza Cibeles 1. Metro: Banco de España
Opening hours: Mondays to Fridays: 09:00 to 02:00 and Saturdays and Sundays: 11:00 to 02:30.

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.

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!