Every self-respecting European city boasts special squares. There are bigger and smaller ones, there are more famous and less famous. There are those with a long history, and there are those whose modern story is no less fascinating. The squares in the center of Madrid undoubtedly meet all these definitions.
So that you do not have to decide where to go on your visit to the city, we have prepared for you the short list of the main squares in the city center of Madrid. They are not far from each other, but each is a world and its fullness. So just before you join our free city tour, which of course goes through each of them, we invite you to take a short tour with us through our blog.
Sol Square – the sun gate of Old Madrid
The first square on the list is of course Sol Square, or "the Sun Gate". This square is probably the most famous in the city. Maybe because no matter where you go downtown – you will always find yourself coming to it in the end.
It used to be the eastern gate of the city wall, hence its name. Today it is the heart of Madrid, of Spain – and perhaps of the whole world, depending on who you ask. It certainly has a place of honor on the list of squares in central Madrid.
On our free tour of the city center we will hear what the connection is between bells and grapes, between kings and bottles of sherry wine, and between bears and the highest capital city in the EU.
Plaza Mayor – Royal weddings and Christmas markets
The square that came in second on the list of squares in the center of Madrid is Plaza Mayor. The square was the main square of the old city, before Sol Square took its place.
The square now houses Madrid's main Christmas market, but don’t let this sweet image fool you. This square has seen a great many things, from royal weddings, through mass executions to traditional bullfights.
Plaza Oriente - When dictatorship and art meet
And finally, the square that connects the palace with the Royal Theater fits nicely into the list. The "Square of the East" brings together all the ancient kings of the various kingdoms that today make up Spain, but not only.
Near the square, we can find the fascinating statue of Felipe IV, facing the theater and his buttocks, in forgiveness of your honor, he turns to the palace.
So why did they decide to place the statue this way? And how does all this relate to the less enlightened days of Spain under Franco? We do not easily reveal all our secrets...
Join one of our free tours in the center of Madrid, and come and get to know with us all the secrets of the squares in the city center of Madrid. We assure you that after the visit you will get to know the city much better, and will be left with a taste of more.