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Madrid. Tapas and beer.

Madrid, Spain

Madrid is the Belfast of Spain! Where we found BCN to be very touristy and busy, Madrid has showed us a more slow and typical version of Spain. On the first day, we managed to see a lot. A lot of tapas bars that is. We spent the day hopping around the city from tapas bar to tapas bar. I think 6 in total! The usual policy in Spain is that when you sit and order a drink, they will come and bring you small plates of food, complimentary. You can then sit all night and drink and munch on the appies. Usually things like olives, nuts, shrimp, little sausages etc. Almost all of the small tapas bars have a smoked cow leg on the bar that they cut the Jambon (Ham) directly from the leg and onto the plate for appies. The jambon is very dry, salty and smoked...and to die for!

The tapas bars are almost all decorated with wine bottles and beautiful art. It was so amazing to sit and watch and enjoy.

After our walking around that day, we settled at a roof top terrace for... more tapas! They had the most amazing olives, the best we´ve tried so far, they tasted like a combination between avacado, butter and olives, amazing! Our night ended with a long walk around the city to see some of the sights. We stumbled into a mexican restauraunt for one final night cap.

This last stop had a crazy decoration set up and seemed a little out of the ordinary, but it was a great time with our new friends Shel and Shane, from LA.

The second day in Madrid, we walked around the city some more and visited Place real, the home of the Spanish royalty.

There were a number of things on display, from some of the typical rooms, preserved from original use, to a sample of the royal armoury. Of course photos weren´t allowed, but as they didn´t take my camera, we managed to sneak a few in.

That night, it was a relaxing night on the roof top terrace of our hostel (Mad hostel) with some bottles of wine and conversation with Shel & Shane. THe conversation was great, and when we were kicked off the terrace at 11:00, we moved on to the Cat hostel bar to continue... and continue we did, until they kicked us out at 03:00 in the morning. It was an amazing night and the first of many deep conversations with amazing people! However, if you think we had a late night, we were early to bed compared to most party-goers. Pub crawls here in Madrid start at 12:30 in the morning and run till the wee hours! This is what the siesta was invented for. The average Spaniard gets up at a normal hour, between 7-8, and then is home just after ´lunch´ at around 14:00. Stores and restaraunts don´t open until around 20:30. Often supper or the last meal of the day isn´t eaten until around 22:30!

For those who want to stay in Madrid, the Mad hostel and the Cat hostel are owned by the same owners. The Mad is more quite and calm. They don´t have a bar. The Cat hostel is the rowdy of the two, and it is a little larger. Both are in a great location and are super clean! There are a string of hostels that seem to all be affiliated, or very similar in organization, cost and level of services. We´ve been sticking to these and have found them to be top notch. Hello BCN comes highly reccommended as well. Our next two stops are the Melting pot in Malaga and the melting pot in Tarifa. They look amazing!

The next morning, off on the train from Madrid to Malaga!

permalink written by  ECRadventure on May 22, 2009 from Madrid, Spain
from the travel blog: ECRadventure's Travel Blog
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