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Madrid, Spain

Madrid & Central Spain

Capital treasures in Spain's rural heartland

Spain tailor-made holidays & city breaks

Introduction

Infectious energy, artistic riches and gastronomic innovation – the sweeping brush strokes that texture Madrid’s city canvas are broad indeed. And, fanning out from Spanish capital, a spectacular swathe of countryside is punctuated by tantalising array of historic towns and lovingly converted parador hotels, perfect for exploring by on a self-drive.

A city of art

Art plays a central part in any visit to Madrid, with three world-leading art galleries – the Museo del Prado, Centro de Arte Reina Sofia and Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza – featuring the works of such homegrown talents as Picasso, Dalí and Miró. But, the city’s creative swagger isn’t confined to the walls of its museums.

Wander through Madrid's central bustle to find masterpiece statues and monuments such as the renowned La Fuente de Cibeles and Puerta de Alcalá. Or, enjoy a different form of artistry with a visit to the Bernabéu, home to the ‘galacticos’ of the city’s much-vaunted football team. Whatever you choose, there’s a certain glamour, extravagance even, to Spain’s beguiling capital.

View of the statue of La Fuente de Cibeles in Madrid
La Fuente de Cibeles, Madrid

Madrid's Gastronomic delights

Matching Madrid’s artistic flourishes is a gastronomic scene revolutionised through a flair for innovation paired with the homely flavours of traditional Spanish cookery. It’s a fusion that has brought Madrid to the forefront of Europe’s great culinary destinations, showcased in everything from Michelin–starred restaurants to lively tapas bars.

Abundant architectural riches

It’s all framed by a dizzying array of architectural styles that chart the city’s evolution from medieval town to modern capital; compare grand royal palaces with the clean lines and striking angles of their Spanish-contemporary counterparts.

View of Madrid's Santa Maria la Real de La Almudena Cathedral
Santa Maria la Real de La Almudena Cathedral

And, while a sprinkling of the Gothic and Renaissance remains, it’s the austere brickwork façades and extravagant interior contrasts of Madrid’s Habsburg-era buildings that are arguably its defining feature, a style best seen at the central Plaza Mayor.

Beyond Madrid: Toledo, Segovia & Salamanca

With so much to see in the city itself, it’s perhaps easy to forget what lies just a short drive beyond Madrid’s urban borders. Indeed, the rural sweeps of central Spain’s Extremadura, La Mancha and Castilla y León provinces are easily reached by car from the capital.

And, each one showcases its very own collection of rare cultural treasures, from Toledo’s laneway labyrinth to Salamanca’s Romanesque churches and Segovia’s 11th-century fortress walls. Explore it all on independent self-drives, staying at historic parador hotels, lovingly converted from medieval castles, palaces and convents.

View across historic Toledo in central Spain
Toledo, central Spain


 

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Special offers in Madrid & Central Spain

Ronda, Andalucia, Spain

‭Iberian Inspiration‬‬‬

12-day escorted tour from £2,615 pp incl. flights

Special
offer

Early booking discount – Save up to £135 pp
Book by: 15 December 2019

On this small-group escorted tour, you'll take in the rich history and diverse cultures of the Iberian Peninsula, all in the company of expert guides. Explore a heady mix of treasures that range from Arabic palaces and Roman temples to Catholic cathedrals and attention-grabbing cuisine

Top itineraries in Madrid & Central Spain

Hacienda Zorita, Salamanca

Salamanca Wine Experience‬‬ at Hacienda Zorita

6-day tailor-made break staying at Hacienda Zorita from £645 pp incl. flights

Special
offer

Stay 5 and pay for 4 nights discount – Save up to £100 pp
Book by: 14 December 2019

Staying in a 14th-century country manor among the vineyards of the Duero Valley, you'll enjoy sommelier-led tastings, spa treatments and the chance to explore Salamanca’s heritage charm.

Parador de Siguenza

Spain’s Paradors

Tailor-made self-drive routes from £375 pp incl. flights

Free car hire

Spain's paradors are a network of historic palaces, fortresses and castles converted to luxury hotels. Take a look at our favourite parador itineraries or get in contact to tailor-make your own, with plenty of superb-value offers available.

Segovia

World Heritage Sites of Spain

7-day tailor-made self-drive from £685 pp incl. flights

Free car hire

Among its rolling hills and sweeping plains, central Spain hides some of Europe’s finest cultural treasures, from medieval fortresses to Roman aqueducts. You’ll take it all in with scenic country drives and stays in historic hotels.

Oropesa Castle at Toledo Castilla La Mancha, Spain

Madrid & the Castle Route

6-day tailor-made self-drive from £650 pp incl. flights

Free car hire

After beginning with Madrid's storied grandeur, drive the beautiful Castle Route of Spain, staying in the region's finest paradors – historic hotels that range from 14th-century castle accommodation to once-ancestral aristocrat homes.

See all itinerary ideas

Top places to stay in Madrid & Central Spain

ME Madrid Reina Victoria

ME Madrid Reina Victoria, Madrid

Contemporary hotel

With so much on the doorstep, ME Madrid Reina Victoria is the perfect base for city slickers, art lovers, historians and gastronomes alike

Classic Room, Gran Melia Palacio de los Duques, Madrid

Gran Melia Palacio de los Duques, Madrid

Historic hotel

A member of Leading Hotels of the World, this 19th century former palace counts the Royal Palace, Teatro Royal and Almudena Cathedral among its prestigious neighbours. And, from its historic garden setting to its panoramic rooftop views, it’s a haven of tranquility in the beating heart of Madrid

Royal Suite, Hotel Ritz, Madrid

Hotel Ritz, Madrid

Grand & elegant hotel

Part of the Mandarin Oriental group, this 1910 belle époque masterpiece takes pride of place in the heart of Madrid’s cultural ‘Golden Triangle’

Palacio San Facundo, Segovia

Palacio San Facundo, Segovia

Traditional hotel

With its traditional, wood-beam aesthetic and sleek, contemporary design, this renovated 16th century palace is perfectly positioned to explore Segovia’s World Heritage charms

See all places to stay

Where to go in Madrid & Central Spain

Toledo

Toledo

Toledo is one of Central Spain's loveliest cities. Straddling the Tagus River around 70 kilometres south of Madrid, Toledo is also a fascinating city historically, a former capital of the Spanish Empire. Today, Toledo is a UNESCO World Heritage site on account of the city's impressive buildings.

When to go to Madrid & Central Spain

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Meet our Madrid & Central Spain experts

Speak to a tailor-made specialist on 020 7664 2264

Meet the team

Why book with Wexas Travel?

At Wexas, we specialise in bespoke travel experiences. Our itineraries are just samples of what we can arrange, and can be changed depending on your precise needs, finances and ideas by our experienced destination specialists.

Contact one of our consultants on 020 7664 2264 to discuss how we can tailor your holiday.

Learn why Wexas is the leader in creating luxury holidays. What is tailor-made travel?

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Every step of the way

Every step of the way

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