The best way to discover Madrid is to tackle it neighbourhood by neighbourhood, because each "barrio" boasts a different personality and history.
Madrid has an old city center, with an ambling
urban structure which is not particularly
well defined. Streets don't run parallel and
perpendicular, unless by chance, especially
in the old city center. Because of this, it's
not useful to explain locations in terms of
blocks, a common practice in most modern city
Madrid city center can be broken up in many ways. The division
we use here does not follow official
partitions so much but areas popularly accepted, each with its own character. On the map below you can see the city center of Madrid, the metro stations there, and each neighbourhood in a different colour.
From "wild" Malasaña to touristy Puerta del Sol, from the historic Plaza Mayor to the elegant Salamanca, Madrid holds something for all tastes and interest.
In the following pages you have information on the location, tourist sights, cultural attractions and other curio of each one of the areas of Madrid, all done with an independent and casual point of view. On each page you also have maps available to complement
this section of the Softguide, which you can
view, download and/or print.
Madrid City Center Areas: