- By Kevin
- On Oct 30, 2017
- Travel Tips
Full of energy and packed with cultural attractions,Madrid is a modern metropolis that offers a taste of the real Spain.Wide avenues are congested with traffic,but beautiful parks break up the urban sprawl.Great things to do in Madrid as below:
A truly world-class museum,the Prado Museum has a collection of more than 5,000 paintings that rivals the Louvre collection in Paris.Spanish paintings from the 12th century to the early 19th century form the majority of the collection,and many are famous masterpieces.The assortment of paintings by Francisco de Goya includes a remarkable 140 works.The collection also covers Italian,Flemish,French,British,and German paintings as well as Neoclassical Italian sculptures.
The Prado Museum displays around 2,300 pieces of the collection in more than 100 rooms on three floors.Trying to see it all in one visit can be daunting,but it's possible to focus on a specific itinerary of masterpieces.The Prado suggests"routes"(self-guided tours)of specific works.These routes showcase the most renowned pieces in the collection including the famous painting of the Prado,Las Meninas.This magnificent painting of the Spanish royal family of Felipe IV was created by Velázquez in 1656.Other must-see works among the museum's top 50 masterpieces include the The Annunciation by Fra Angelico,Christ Washing the Disciples'Feet by Tintoretto,The Descent from the Cross by Rogier van der Weyden,Jacob's Dream by Joséde Ribera,The Third of May by Goya,The Immaculate Conception by Murillo,the Self Portrait by Dürer,Adoration of the Shepherds by El Greco,Parnassus by Poussin,and The Garden of Earthly Delights by Bosch.
Visitors can also opt to use the museum's audio guide(for a small fee),which includes a tour of 50 masterpieces.Diehard art lovers can select the full-version audio-guide tour that covers 250 works.Tourists will also appreciate the museum's gift shop and the caféwith a pleasant outdoor terrace.In association with the Prado Museum,the Church of San Jerónimo el Real behind the museum displays a noteworthy collection of 17th-century Spanish religious paintings.
Royal Palace:Grandiose Architecture Inspired by Versailles
This grandiose palace is the Spanish version of Versailles,a royal court designed to impress.Rising above a steep slope overlooking the lush gardens,the palace is built entirely of granite and white Colmenar stone.The palace was commissioned by Philip V in the 18th century.The majestic Neoclassical facade features Ionic columns and Doric pilasters,based on drawings that the sculptor Bernini originally intended for the Louvre in Paris.The balustrade features statues of Spanish kings.
The most striking feature of the interior is the imposing staircase at the entrance hallway,with a fresco of The Triumph of Religion and the Church,that leads up to the main floor.The King Charles III apartments are among the beautiful rooms in the Royal Palace.A masterpiece of Rococo style,the Salon de Gasparini features graceful chinoiserie,an intricately patterned marble floor,and carefully matched silk wall hangings.The Salón del Trono(Throne Room)is adorned with frescoes by Tiepolo including The Greatness of the Spanish Monarchy,one of his finest works.Still used for State ceremonies,the Throne Room is clad in sumptuous red velvet and decorated with valuable tapestries,mirrors,furniture,and chandeliers.Throughout the palace masterpieces of art decorate the walls:paintings by Velázquez,Goya,Rubens,El Greco,and Caravaggio,and exquisite Flemish and French tapestries.History buffs will want to visit the palace's Royal Armory,which contains 3,000 exhibits dating back to the 16th century.