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Art Abounds in Madrid, Spain

Aug 17, 2007
Madrid, Spain ranks third in population amongst cities in Europe, and is the largest city in Spain. It's size, however, doesn't seem to stop thousands of tourists from visiting the city every year. That's probably because Madrid offers an incredible variety of attractions ranging from classical music venues to hopping night clubs.

Because of its location on the Manzanares River, Madrid has been home to people since pre-historic times. However, the city's documented history begins in the 9th century when a small palace was built on the present day site of the Palacio Real. The palace was built under orders from Muhammad I. The Muslims living in the area at the time called the Manzanares "al-Majrit," which means "source of water." As a result, the region was named Majerit, which later became Madrid.

Today Madrid is one of the most popular destinations for travelers to Spain. It's best known for the large number of monuments and cultural attractions. Madrid is also considered among the best cities in Europe for touring art museums. Along the Paseo del Prado sit three popular museums that are endowed by the Golden Triangle of Art.

The Prado Museum is the most well-known of the three Golden Triangle museums. It contains Diego Velazquez's "Las Meninas" and Francisco de Goya's "La maja vestida" and "La maja desnuda." The Thyssen Bornemisza Museum is another of the Golden Triangle museums, and is comprised of art from a mixed private collection. The third museum, the Reina Sofia Museum, holds Pablo Picasso's "Guernica."

In addition to its many museums, Madrid also has a number of other attractions that are popular with tourists. Among them are the enormous Royal Palace of Madrid, the Teatro Real (also called the Royal Theater) and its refurbished 1850 Opera House, and the National Library building, which was established in 1712 and holds many of Spain's historical archives.

After spending a busy day touring Madrid's many sites, tourists can also take part in the exciting nightlife the city offers. Madrid is very well known in Europe for its wild nightlife and numerous night clubs. It's not at all uncommon for the young people of Madrid to spend an entire night dancing then, without sleeping, shower and report to their places of employment.

Another big draw for Madrid is its bullfighting season. The season begins in March and ends in October. During the San Isidro festivities, bullfights take place every day from mid-March to the end of June. Then, for the remainder of the season, bullfights are held every Sunday as well as on public holidays.

Although Madrid attracts thousands of tourists, it is well equipped to comfortably accommodate them all. There are a number of beautiful places to stay, including both hotels and holiday apartments.

One of the nicest things about locating vacation accommodations in Madrid is that you're not limited to an area with only a certain type of attraction. There are several hotels and holiday apartments centrally located to cultural attractions as well as shopping and nightlife.
About the Author
Gaizka Pujana is the co-owner of Barcelona Homes, S.L. which is a company
specialized in providing short term tenancy solutions in Seville and Barcelona through its
web pages apartments amsterdam
Paris apartments
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