Travel, Zebra no Stripes

Top Tips for a Winter Getaway in Madrid

I have been wanting to visit Madrid for a long long time (my bucket list states visiting all the major European capitals) and Madrid was on top of that list. I always thought it is best to visit Spain during the summer season for its gorgeous weather, but this time we were so spontaneous and as every year planned a quick weekend getaway before Christmas.

We stayed at NH Collection Madrid Suecia a lovely boutique hotel in the heart of Madrid. The hotel building dates back to the 1950s and over the years has housed a number of famous guests. It’s well known for being Ernest Hemingway’s home when he visited Madrid!

I absolutely loved our stay at NH Collection. The room was stunning with lots of daylight, beautiful black & white wall art and a very spacious bathroom. I loved the fact that we received an upgrade and could benefit from having a larger suite! I highly recommend staying at this hotel.

Don’t get me wrong I knew Madrid would be pretty cold, I certainly wasn’t expecting a heatwave, but I also didn’t think the temperature would be close to 0 degrees! It was colder than London, but that didn’t spoil our time at all. We enjoyed lots of lovely local food: Spain is known for their amazing grilled meat selection and great tasting wine!

I would strongly recommend Las Brasas De Vulcano.  We found this place accidentally as we wandered around, saw the menu outside and decided to check it out. The interior is so quirky and the staff very friendly! We even received free nibbles with our food and drinks. After looking at the menu for a good couple of minutes we ordered the speciality Vulcano mixed grill for two and loved it, the plater was so huge we could not finish it all!

Living in London we are used to a glass of wine costing on average £6 and up, but a good glass of wine in Madrid costs only €2!!! I was totally shocked but in a very positive way. On average we didn’t pay more than €40 for dinner which is very competitive (compared to London at least).

Madrid is a lovely city with lots of history, great shopping and amazing cousine! Most of the people come to Madrid for art and great, cheap nightlife, but you will also quickly discover that Madrid has an amazing shopping range!

From traditional shops, design boutiques and cute little markets you will find everything you need. There’s a large pedestrianised area between the Puerta del Sol and the Gran Via. That place is literally packed with mainstream clothes and shoe shops! Plan on spending some time there and check out the local stores with some really good bargains!!

Surprisingly I didn’t really buy much apart from 3 pairs of earrings, 2 hats and 1 pair of gloves. I loved my burgundy gloves so much and was gutted that I lost one of them just after two days… I recommend you to pack just a few necessary things leaving the rest of the space for the shopping you’re going to do!

Top tips during your visit:

  • Take the metro. Many cities lack great public transport, Madrid is not one of them! You can easily get a Metro from the airport to the city centre in less than an hour. Make sure to get 10-pass transportation ticket!
  • Check out San Miquel Mercado located in the city centre, where you can try all the delicious Spanish food at every stand and it is where people go for their pre-meal aperitif.
  • Salamanca neighbourhood is an absolute must for those who like to shop, it’s home to all the best designers so be sure to check it out.
  • If you want to eat in central and tourist places such as Sol or Plaza Mayor, you have to know that the quality of the food will not be good, and the prices will be higher.
  • Churros with chocolate are a must try when in Madrid!
  • Pack light and enjoy great shopping experience!

Have you visited Madrid? What are your best tips and memories?




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Welcome to Zebra no Stripes blog. My name's Paula and I'm twenty - something girl living in London.
I started this blog to document my day-to-day life, my love to fashion, beauty and travel

I hope you like it.

Zebra no Stripes


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