A 48 Hour Guide to Madrid
Madrid is the capital of Spain and the third largest city in the European Union. It is located at the very center of the country in an area that has actually been inhabited by humans since prehistoric times. The city was founded in the ninth century A.D. by the Moors during the Arab occupation of the Iberian peninsula, but was conquered by the Christians in the beginning of the eleventh century. The Court of Madrid was assembled for the first time by King Fernando V in the year 1329 and became the capital of Spain in 1561 when Felipe II moved the Imperial Court to Madrid. From there, the city took off, and through the next centuries was transformed into a bustling urban center. It mostly survived the War of Spanish Succession, the Peninsular War (the invasion of the French under Napoleon), and the Spanish Civil War in the 20th century. It exists today as a modern mix of the contemporary and the classic, a lively place where you can find all manner of interesting sights and a nearly never-ending entertainment.
Buy some handmade espadrilles at the infamous Alpargateria Casa Hernanz
Lunch at the Mercado de San Miguel
Dinner in Salamanca at TATEL
Walk up the Paseo del Prado to the Plaza de Cibeles
Lunch at Habanera
Go shopping in Salamanca
Grab a drink at the Tartan Roof Bar at the Circulo de Bellas Artes (make reservation ahead of time if you can)
Dinner at Ten Con Ten
**This guide is based on research that I did to plan my trip to Madrid and based on my own experiences while there. Of course, two days in any place does not make me an expert, and I would love to hear any and all additional suggestions so that I may add them to the guide.