Madrid: Mercado de San Miguel, Palacio Real, Templo de Debod

On the third day, we had breakfast in a little bakery called ‘Que Pan’ on Carrera de San Francisco. It was really good, but once again, not a living soul there spoke one word of English. Oh the horror.

First on the agenda of the day – after breakfast of course – was the Mercado de San Miguel, which you can find close to the Plaza Mayor. We were immediately a bit disappointed by how small the market was. It was a lot smaller than the ones I’d already visited in other cities. This isn’t a market where the locals buy all their supplies; it seemed more like a place for tourists. Nonetheless, it’s nice to walk through it and take a look around for a few minutes. Oh, and their berry juice is simply to die for!

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Our next stop for the day was the Palacio Real (The Royal Palace). We wanted to be there early enough so we wouldn’t have a brave a long waiting line to get in. And we were lucky, because we got in and through security in less than ten minutes.

The entry price is 10 euros, but it’s definitely worth it. From the inner court, you have a lovely view on Madrid, but what’s most impressive are the chambers. Each room is so different from the other and it’s just marvelous. Unfortunately you can’t take any pictures there and neither in the armory room.

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Across from the Palacio Real, you can see the Catedral de Neustra Senora de la Almundena. This cathedral is another impressive building and also one of my favorites in Madrid.

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After having admired these two buildings long enough, we took the metro to the Teleferico Casa de Campo. This cable car will take you to a viewing point of the city. It costs 4 euros for a single trip and 5,8 euros for a retour ticket. We took the retour one because the walk back to the city seemed just a little too long.

The viewing point itself isn’t very interesting in my opinion, but the ride to the viewing point itself is really nice. You can easily distinguish the Palacio Real and the Cathedral.

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By the time we got off the cable car, it was already way past noon, so definitely time for lunch. Much to our anger, we couldn’t find any restaurant in the neighborhoud that appealed to us, so we ended up having Taco Bell. Thank god I love Taco Bell.

Since we seemed to be ahead of schedule that day, we took an unplanned metro trip to Plaza Castilla, the more business part of the city. Skyscrapers rise up all around you, and you feel like you’re in an entirely different city. To be honest, it’s not quite worth to go all the way up there if you don’t have a lot of time, but since we had some time to spare, I’m glad that I’ve seen the first leaning skyscrapers ever made.

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By the time we were back at Plaza De Espãna, it was already dark, which was exactly what I was hoping for. We had already passed Templo De Debod by daylight earlier that day, but from the pictures on the internet, I had noticed that the temple seemed a lot more beautiful by night, all lit up. And damn, so true!

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This temple was built in the third century before Christ, and has many lovely hieroglyphs inside. The entry is free, but only a limited amount of people are allowed in at the same time, so there might a little queue. But it’s definitely worth it to wait a bit to go inside.

Oh and in case you want to take a picture of the temple, beware of annoying teenagers who think life is a photoshoot and keep the thing hostage for over fifteen minutes to do their thing. (No, I was not getting frustrated at. all.)

When we finally got our pic – phew -, we went back to Calle Cuchilleros for diner. On tripadvisor we’d read about a lovely paella restaurant called ‘La Traviesa’ and since we hadn’t eaten paella yet on our trip, that was our dinner destination. Once again, English seemed a struggle so placing our order was quite difficult. The paella had to be shared by two, but since we were three, that proved to be a problem. We tried explaining our situation to the waitor and he said it wasn’t possible to share unless we ordered one extra course (or at least, that’s what we think he asked of us.) So we ordered bacon croquettes and got those first and then afterwards the paella. We have no idea what exactly happened because the bill was a lot less than expected, but I do know that we had a lovely dinner, and that’s of course the most important thing. There is only one thing I want to mention as well; the portion of paella wasn’t that big (even for only two people).

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So as you can see, another successful day in Madrid.

Until next time,

With love, Ellen

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