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Madrid General Info, Madrid introduction

 
 

Madrid, Spain’s capital city, is also the country’s largest with about 3 million inhabitants. Of these, at least 17% are immigrants and many Spaniards are from elsewhere. This means that people in Madrid are very friendly to fellow outsiders. It's widely agreed that you can be a "madrileño" without being born in Madrid!

Madrid's history is an odd one. An insignificant medieval city, it was only named capital in the 16th century and struggled to live up to the reputation of other great European hubs. Nowadays - finally - Madrid rests self assured with world class museums and architecture.

Above all, Madrid is a city experienced on the street
. It truly offers Europe's craziest nightlife -- you'll find yourself out until 6am bouncing from tapas bars to nightclubs wondering when and where the hours escaped you. If you'd rather make a tranquil night of it, you'll find every kind of restaurant imaginable, dozens of movie theaters, theaters and flamenco venues. If you're a sports fanatics, plan ahead to see the "Best Football team of the 20th Century," Real Madrid CF, in action at the Bernabéu stadium.

Check out our city guide section for tips on moving beyond touristy Puerta del Sol to rock 'n roll Malasaña, sleek Chueca, multiethnic Lavapiés, ritzy Salamanca or monumental "Madrid de los Austrias". Madrid is just waiting to be explored, so stretch your legs in one of its 3 large parks or stroll shopping for unique finds.

Ready to find out more? This is just an introduction... explore our Madrid travel guide to see what this amazing city is all about!

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