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Madrid Centre Westend: Plaza de España to Moncloa

 
 

One of the western point of reference in Madrid is Plaza de España.

Plaza de España is one of Madrid's most symbolic squares, located just north of the Royal Palace all the way west of Madrid's center. Two enormous Madrid avenues - Gran Vía and Calle de Princesa - meet here. Gran Vía leads southeast towards Puerta del Sol; Calle de Princesa leads northwest to Moncloa, where the Complutense University is located.

The area right around Plaza de España holds a lively combination of art house movie theaters, ethnic restaurants and a large park, the Parque del Oeste. The southern section of the park, Templo de Debod, offers incredible sunset views overlooking the Almudena Cathedral and Royal Palace. The neighborhood northwest of Plaza de España, Argüelles/ Moncloa, is the city's biggest university district and holds all that comes with a student population: bars, concert venues, restaurants, clubs and numerous shops.

Two enormous avenues -Gran Vía and Calle de Princesa- meet here. Gran Vía
leads southeast towards Cibeles; and Calle de Princesa leads northwest to Moncloa. The massive Plaza de España is flanked by Madrid's first skyscrapers, built in the 1950's: Torre de Madrid and Edificio España.
Plaza de España is one of Madrid's most symbolic squares, located just north of the Royal Palace
all the way west of Madrid's center.

Torre de Madrid
is one of the tallest skyscrapers of Madrid (Spain), 142 meters high and 36 floors over ground. It was built in 1957, and is located in the Plaza de España (Spain square), being an emblematic building for the square and for the city itself. It houses offices and apartaments.

The area right around Plaza de España holds a lively combination of art house movie theaters
, ethnic restaurants and a large park, the Parque del Oeste. For a night at the movies, head up to Calle Martín de los Heros and you'll find 3 great Madrid movie theaters: Cines Princesa, Alphaville Golem and Renoir Plaza España. They all play an interesting selection of movies in their original language with subtitles.

Calle Princesa, which goes from Plaza de España to Moncloa, is one of the main shopping streets in the area, as well as Calle Alberto Aguilera.

The balustraded viewpoint near the temple offers fantastic sunset views overlooking the Casa de Campo
, Madrid's skyline, and the Sierra de Guadarrama in the distance.

Moncloa

This is the westernmost district in central Madrid. Moncloa is an important communications hub: in the new "intercambiador" (transport connections station) you can get on buses or trains going anywhere in the near northwest of the Comunidad de Madrid. It is also the exit of the Carretera de la Coruña (A-6 road), the main road going to the northwest of Spain.

Moncloa is also the departure point to go to all the colleges and faculties in the nearby campus of the
Ciudad Universitaria (Madrid's largest university campus).
Also in the area is the Parque del Oeste (West Park), a delightful place to walk and relax. Paseo del Pintor Rosales is a promenade by the park, along the elegant Argüelles district, with crowded terraces in the summer, as it is part of Madrid's Summer nightlife tradition.


From Parque del Oeste, at the Paseo del Pintor Rosales is the teleférico entrance. This aerial cable car runs above the Parque del Oeste and the Casa de Campo. It lets out in the middle of the Casa de Campo, former haunting grounds of the kings of Spain and today a 1,722 hectares public park, 5 times the size of Central Park (NYC). This fantastic natural reserve is not so frecuented by madrileños, as it has a reputation for being a place for seedy exchanges, the City Council has lately done a lot to root out this practices, which were anyway limited to a specific area. But the huge Casa de Campo is mostly wild land where one can feel being at the end of the world, at ten minutes ride in the cable car from the city center. Inside the Casa de Campo is Madrid's amusement park, which has improved significantly in recent years by adding 3 new roller coasters, also Madrid Zoo, and the area of leisure at Lago -with has a metro station. For more information see our parks and gardens page.
Parque del Oeste continues northwest turning into Parque de la Bombilla. Outdoor concerts and film series are held here over the summer.

Faro de Moncloa
,
Avda. de la Victoria, s/n
Google map location
Here's another opportunity to get a glimpse of Madrid from above: the Faro de Moncloa. Zip up the pin-like tower in a glass elevator for very little money.

Ciudad Universitaria

Google map location
In the vast campus of Moncloa there are faculties of the Universidad Complutense and the Universidad Politécnica- It occupies an area of 5,5 km2 north of Moncloa station. It was a very active battle field during the Civil War and the scenario of many students revolts during the Franco years. In the campus there are also students residences, green areas, a botanic garden, and the Museo del Traje.

The Palacio de la Moncloa lies on the Western border of Ciudad Universitaria.
This is the official residence of Spain's President of the Government.

Metro stops in this area:
Plaza de España, Ventura Rodríguez, Argüelles, Moncloa


 
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