AREAS OF MADRID OUTSIDE MADRID CITY CENTER
The main site to visit in this neightbourhood is the Las Ventas bullring:
Plaza de Toros Monumental de Las Ventas, Alcalá 237
It was built in 1929 and the first bullfight was in 1931. Today it is still considered to be the main bullfighting arena in Madrid holding up to 23,000 spectators. Much like our football and baseball stadiums this one is multi-functional: "off-season" it is a venue for rock concerts.
Madrid's bullring attracts both the real 'aficionados' (fans) of bullfighting who really understand the art of bullfighting, as much as tourists. It is the hardest bullring in which to succeed for matadors. The best time to see a bullfight in Madrid is during the months of May and June when San Isidro, the world's most famous bullfighting festival takes place. Everyday for three weeks there are fights at 7 o'clock in the evening which last from two to three hours. The price of the seats depends upon how close they are to the "arena" and whether they are in the sun or the shade (the latter being more expensive). Tickets are difficult to get hold of during San Isidro as every evening is a sell-out. For less important bullfights during the rest of the season you can often get tickets at the Las Ventas bullring ticket offices on Friday and Saturday from 10 to 14h and 17 to 20h. Also, on the day of the fight itself (Sunday) from 10h until 19h. A number of ticket offices also offer tickets in the centre of Madrid.
Behind the Plaza de Toros is the Museo Taurino (Bullfighting Museum). This museum can be a good introduction to bullfighting for those who want to understand the event. Here you'll see the costume (traje de luces -suit of lights) that the bullfighter Manolete was wearing when he was gored to death at age 30 in Linares's bullring. Other exhibits include a Goya's painting of a matador, as well as photographs and relics that trace the history of bullfighting in Spain from its ancient origins to the present day.
The Plaza de Manuel Becerra is the junction of the Calle de Alcalá, the Calle de Francisco Silvela and the Calle del Doctor Esquerdo.
Fábrica Nacional de Moneda y Timbre,
Calle del Doctor Esquerdo nº 36
Metro: O'Donnell (L6), Goya (L2, L4) Google map location
This is the Spanish Mint and Coin Museum. The establishment of the Mint goes back to 1771. It was actually opened to the public during the reign of Queen Isabella II, however the building it occupies now dates back only to 1964. It contains exhibits of money, medals and printing.
The Casa de la Moneda Museum is considered to be one of the most important museums of its kind in the world. The wealth of its collections, its extensive facilities and the scientific development in the field of research and culture that is generated within its walls, make the Museum a one-of-a-kind place from which to learn about the world of money.
The origins of the Museum date back to the eighteenth century and are closely linked to the figure of Tomás Francisco Prieto, Master Engraver to the Mints of King Charles III, and the Director of Intaglio Engraving at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts of San Fernando. Prieto was also the founder, in 1771, of a School of Engraving where training was given to the artists who would later ply their skill in the Mints of Spain and the Indies.
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