Madrid Walking Tour, Spain

What do you see when you have just a day for city Like Madrid! After a lot of planning and brain storming we settled to do a self guided Madrid Walking tour, walking along the streets from Puerta del Sol to Royal Palace Loop.

Memorable Madrid Walking Tour

The first iconic sight that captured our attention as soon as we got out of the glass fish Metro entrance was “Statue of Bear and the Strawberry Tree”. I always knew strawberries grew in small plants. The tree is madrono tree producing a berry Here the sculptor Antonio Navarro Santafé (1906-1983) has depicted it as a tree representing the heraldic arms of the town, and original symbol of the city. Madrid’s official symbol, it is made partly with stone and partly with bronze, hard to miss it on Preciados street from Puerta del Sol. I doubt if any tourist would have crossed this spot without taking the pic of this iconic symbol of Madrid!

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Puerta del Sol is the ideal spot to start your Madrid walking tour. You can refer to it as heart of Madrid City. The architecture around is amazing, just four stories yet must have been like skyscrapers during the days they were built. Plaza San Idlefonso with its fountain makes another best photography spot. A bronze statue of King Charles III on horseback adorns the centre of square. The buildings around have a history of their own.


Rick Steves mentions in his guide – The bell atop the governor’s house chimes 12 times, while Madrilenoseat one grape for each ring to bring good luck through each of the next 12 months!

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Every street from here spreading out into the city has a name and so uniquely displayed in tiles on the walls. The pictures along with the names give a good idea on what basis the street has been named so. Knowing Spanish of course helps. So we went walking street after street. The Calle de Postas has the coach that carried post those days. Puerta del Sol – Gate of the Sun, named after a gate at the eastern gate of the old city, that has now disappeared.

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The little balconies or windows with their flowering pots, locals walking their dogs, made it all so colorful and cheerful. The beautiful houses were designed for upper middle class citizens of Madrid during the beginning of last century. The buildings share a common British style looks, I just hoped they don’t come under the hammer and get replaced by modern buildings.

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There are several markets and cafes along the route. We visited the Mercado de San Miguel, a market place built mostly of iron and glass. Several high end vendors displayed their produce ranging from gourmet food to wines and tapas. I found the items in market very highly priced, cherries cost 17euros a kilo compared to 2euros in Lisbon Portugal.

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Plaza Mayor of Madrid

The last spot of our Madrid walking tour was the Plaza Mayor, a large cobbled square of Madrid. This was city’s main square from medieval times. Three storey building running all around the square looked so similar to Plaza Mayor of Salamanca, except that there were murals drawn on the walls in the central section. This was designed by the same architect who designed El Escorial, Juan de Herrera. An equestrian statue of Felipe II adorns the center of this square. Innumerable executions, bull fights, fires, royal pageantry and even foot ball matches have been held for centuries in this same place! Overwhelming indeed to just stand in the square and imagine all that history!

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The square’s buildings are private apartments costing from 400,000euros to 2million euros depending on the area!

After a leisurely walk till here we visited Royal Palace, Prado Museum and Cathedral de Almudena.



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53 Responses to “Madrid Walking Tour, Spain

  • You got a lot of nice photos on your walking tour – it looks like a beautiful city.

  • Madrid is an interesting city to walk around. I didn’t see the bear eating strawberries when we were there in 2010.

  • Maniparna Sengupta Majumder
    1 year ago

    The walking tour has revealed the true essence of the city… wonderful pictures. The berry tree and the bear is the one I liked most… 🙂

  • Beautifully captured and fascinating narration

  • Oh gosh! One day in Madrid! Well, at least the Centro is compact and you can walk anywhere. Looks like you hit the best spots ;0)

  • You do realize you are making a lot of people envy you, right? :p

    Beautiful pictures!

  • Wonderful description and beautiful pics. 🙂

  • great photos, thanks for sharing

  • Beautiful virtual tour! I loved all the beautiful architecture all through Madrid, aesthetically pleasing and perfectly well-maintained!

  • Amazing pics. Another beautiful post.
    Greetings 🙂

  • Such charming high-rises. Love the details and the colours on them.
    Thank you for the sights from Madrid, Indrani. 🙂

  • Seems to be a great walking tour! Perhaps it’s the best way to explore a city like Madrid.

  • Great photos of Madrid! Spain is one of my favorite countries and I would love to return someday. Your photo of Mercado de San Miguel with the perfectly arranged cherries was one of my favorite snapshots from everyday life.

  • Madrid is breathtakingly beautiful! Plaza Mayor looks like a sight to behold! I’d love to buy a house there, someday!

  • Lovely colours! So bright and vivid in there. Spain is one of the 3 countries where I want to visit since I was a kid as they are a colonizer of my country. Thank sfor sharing this! #photofriday

  • awesome pics! Spain is high on my bucket list!

  • That colonial touch of Madrid! The place looks magical 😀

  • Oh you brought back the fond memories of Madrid!! Such nostalgia! Visited twice and both times I said hello to that bear! 🙂

    Thanks for sharing, I’m going to browse my Madrid pictures now. 🙂

  • Raji Muthukrishnan
    1 year ago

    A virtual tour. Thank you.

  • The best way to enjoy a city is through a walking tour. Such lovely pictures from Madrid. I especially loved the one of the woman looking from her terrace.

  • How many days required to visit Madrid ???

    • Indrani Ghose
      1 year ago

      At least two days Mahesh. If you can stretch it to 3 days you can give more time for museums too.

  • Madrid is one of my favourite cities! nightlife there is lovely too, everyone is very welcoming. Yes the markets are a little pricey but food is always fresh, really miss this city

  • I love Madrid and absolutely adore Plaza Mayor. Thx so much for bringing back some great memories and for sharing your photos.

  • Madrid is definitely on my bucket list and now you have made me want to go that much more! Your photos inspire me to go sooner than later. Can’t wait to experience it. 😃

  • Such an interesting walking tour – definitely something not to be missed next time I go to Madrid (or I will just follow your post as a guide ;). Love the pictures!

  • Most of the charming and elegant towns and cities of Europe are best seen through walking tours. Madrid is no exception. I feel that you really get close to the heart of a city on walking tours.

  • The artwork on the outside of Plaza Mayor is incredible. I can see from your photos why my wife loved this city so much!

  • Walking tours are indeed the best way to discover a place. Glad you could do one. There are a few in India too that have started. Hope they pick up soon.

  • So this was a self guided tour?

    I always prefer them, as you can your own way and at your own pace!

    Some great photos too!

    • Indrani Ghose
      1 year ago

      Yes Chris a self guided one. may be I missed out on some places but then I could linger on at some places.

  • Carol Colborn
    1 year ago

    Love the bear and tree symbol, the little balconies, tile street signs, and other indications of the colorful Madrid culture.

  • This just brought me back to my time in Madrid instantly!! I love walking tours as well- really makes you experience the place doesn’t it?

  • I would love to one of those apartments with small balconies. The pics with the old lady looks cute

  • Everyone would love to have a walking tour in Madrid. It’s home to some imposing architecture and vibrant street life. I love your photo of Plaza Mayor, it is one of the prettiest open spaces in Spain. It feels like the vibes of Madrid is a fairytale.

  • Hi 🙂
    Madrid is a wonderful city and i think that this tour is perfect for one day. I really like the photos in the post!

  • I’ve never visited Madrid before, but through your pictures, I can see why so many are enamoured by it! I look forward to visiting in future!

  • Wow aren’t the buildings fabulous in Madrid? I loved just wandering those squares and sipping a coffee while people watching.

  • I plan on visiting Madrid at some point after Christmas! Will definitely take your advice and visit some if not all of these sights!

  • Very nice itinerary of Madrid. It’s actually the first city I visited overseas and it’s still very special to me. 🙂

  • Walking tours are such a great and cheap way to explore a city. I especially like Plaza Mayor of Madrid! The art on those walls is splendid

  • Madrid is one of my dream destinations to see in my lifetime! I envy thay you got to tour there! I’m definitely bookmarking your article for future travel reference. Thank you for sharing this!

  • I’ve always been curious on Spain. I’m not being historically bias but I always get interested on how the country who reigned us for 300+++ years look like. I always teach the history to my students and I would love to get a first-hand experience on how the Spanish people treats other people.

  • I have only been once to Madrid and chose to do the free walking tour because I was in a hurry. I only had 20 hours between planes and I wanted to see as much as possible. I remember all the sights from your tour, including the very high prices from the market. The food there looked delicious though.

  • You went to so many gorgeous places! Your photos are wonderful! They really showcase the amazing architecture in Madrid. I bet they were breathtaking in person! I think walking tours are a great way to explore a city as beautiful as Madrid. Glad you did that!

  • Madrid is a city that I am excited to see one day. I wanna see their galleries and would love to meet Real Madrid FC team (will haunt for them).

  • You’ve just toured us around Madrid. Thank you. Aside from the beautiful narration, the photos are real helpful for us to get a clearer picture of the place’s sights, sounds and other offerings.

  • Spain is one of the 3 countries where I want to visit since I was a kid. Seems to be a great walking tour! I loved all the beautiful architecture all through Madrid. Will definitely take your advice.

  • Madrid Spain has long been on my bucket list and I’m not sure when would I’ll be able to visit this place. I truly like all those building structures and the street is really clean. I would like to amble around while enjoying the city view. The strawberry is really enticing as well. Thank you so much sharing!

  • Personally I love walking tour too during my travels. This is because I truly believe it is the best way to slowly view & understand a place, ppl & culture. Moreover am a foodie, so walking tour helps where I can enjoy street foods/ snacks. I also get to chit chat with local ppl too, esp when I need help for road directions 😉 cheers, SiennyLovesDrawing

  • When I visit a new place I also take a walking tour either with other groups or just by myself. in this way, I also get to know the people as well as sight seeing. Madrid is in my bucket list and I’m sure when I get to go there someday, the architecture alone would make the visit worth it. Plus I love Spanish accent as I know a little due to the Spanish colonization in our country. Up until now, some Spanish words are widely used in our place.

  • Laveena Sengar
    9 months ago

    This was one of the best Virtual tours i have ever had. The place looks like some other world and i totally loved your narration.

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