Useful information

Hello Traveler, welcome to Madrid.

Spain is one of the most visited countries in the world. It's capital Madrid, in particular, is one of the biggest cities in Europe, and every year it receives 5 million tourists out of the over 57 million who come through our country rich in culture, cuisine, and good climate.

Madrid is a modern cirty, open to the entire world, with a network of powerful services and an efficient public transportation network allowing you to get to know the valuable heritage of the city both comfortably and cheaply. Moreover, a traveler staying in Madrid has the opportunity to discover the bustling social activity that lasts 24 hours.

Hours

Spain is located in western Europe, which is why there is a gap of one hour (GMT-1) with respect to London. Due to our privileged location, we Spaniards enjoy more hours of sunlight than the rest of Europe, and therefore we extend our schedules as much as possible to take full advantage of the day.

The shops and malls open at 10:00 am and close around 9:30 pm. In general, smal stores take a break for two hours during lunch, around 2:00 pm and 4:00 pm.

Normally the monuments and museums are open everyday except for Monday, from 10:00 am to 9:00 pm, but from DFLAT Madrid we advise you to look it up beforehand since the schedule may vary depending on the day and time of the year.

As we have already indicated, people from Madrid delay their scheudles and it is typical for our lunch time to be between 1:30pm and 3:00 pm. However, travelers can find restaurants with their kitchens open as early as noon in a more European schedule. Dinner tends to be served starting at 8:30 pm and can last until 12:00 at night.

Regarding the nightlife, you must know that Madrid never sleeps. You can find restaurants, bars, and clubs open 24 hours.

Weather

Madrid has a continental climate, marked by big temperature differences throughout the year.

The winter is cold (between the months of November and February) and although snow is not very common, if you visit the city during this time, you should never forget to bring a good coat, a scarf, and gloves for going outside.

Summer is dry and hot. Sometimes, the thermometer can reach 40ºC (104ºF). This, joined together with the activity of a big city, makes being a tourist between 12:00 pm and 5:00 pm pretty hard.

This is why it is advisable to travel to Madrid in spring or fall, because although we could have some rainy days, the climate during these months is very pleasant, oscillating between 15ºC (59ºF) and 25ºC (77ºF) throughout the day.

For you to organize your packing and have all the useful information, the average monthly temperatures are:

January: 5ºC (41ºF) February: 5ºC (41ºF) March: 11ºC (52ºF) April: 13ºC (55ºF)

May: 19ºC (66ºF) June: 22ºC (72ºF) July: 25ºC (77ºF) August: 27ºC (81ºF)

September: 24ºC (75ºF) October: 18ºC (64ºF) November: 10ºC (50ºF) December: 7ºC (45ºF)

Turist office

There are many tourism offices spread throughout Madrid, especially in the center. There you can find all of the useful information you'll need to get along without any problems: places to eat, places to visit in Madrid, useful telephone numbers, transport, maps, etc.

In the airport, you'll find two officse, one in Terminal 1 and another in Terminal 4, open everyday from 9:00 am to 8:00 pm and on holidays, from 9:00 am to 2:00 pm. Below, we provide the address, schedule, and telephone numbers of the tourist information points:

Airport

Terminal 1: +34 91 305 86 56

Terminal 4: +34 91 333 80 52

Tourism offices in the center of Madrid

Puerta de Atocha Station: +34 91 528 46 30 from 8:00 am to 8:00 pm.

C/ Alcalá 31: +34 91 276 71 87 frpm 8:00 am to 8:00 pm.

Plaza Mayor, 27: +34 914 544 410 from 9:30 am to 20:30 pm.

Communications and city transport

Madrid has one of the best and most moden transportation systems in the world. The buses, trains, and metro allow you to move about the city easily and quickly.

Metro/Subway/Tube (www.metromadrid.es)

The metro of Madrid is one of the most modern ones in the world. It includes 12 lines that reach every corner of the city. Lines 1, 2, and 3 are the oldest, but they've been renovated. The others were built in the 20th century.

The metro also reaches the suburbs (Line 12 and the Light Metro).

Its schedule is from 6:00 am to 1:30 am.

The cost will depend on the number of stations and it oscillates between €1.50 euros and €3 for certain combined tickets.

For that reason, DFLAT Madrid recommends you to get a combined ticket of 10 trips for €12.20. This is the cheapest option and it will also allow you to travel on the city buses.

The metro of Madrid reaches the airport, at Terminals 2 and 4. However, it has a supplement of €3, with the maximum price being €5.

City train (www.renfe.es)

Madrid has a network of local trains which connect the surrounding cities to the capital. Moreover, they connect with the metro system and can be used in the combined tickets.

In order to travel to the other cities of Spain, apart from flying, trains are the best option. The network of high velocity trains (AVE) leaves from Madrid and connects to Galicia, Andalusia, Catalonia, and Valencia.

Train schedule: 5:00 am to 12:00 am

The price of the ticket will depend on your place of departure. The Community of Madrid is divided into zones, and the farther you travel away from the capital, the more expensive the trip will be. There are simple tickets but also the so-called “bonotren”, which includes 10 trips and whose price varies depending on the zone (between €10 and €38, approximately).

City buses (www.emtmadrid.es)

Madrid has a network of 2,000 buses by day and by night. They reach all of the areas of the city, including where the train and metro don't reach. On any street of Madrid you can find a stop with all the information you'll need to find your route.

The ticket can be used on the metro too. It is called the metro-bus ticket and it costs €12.20. The day buses run from 6:00 am to 11:30 pm. The night buses run from 11:30 pm to 6:00 am.

Some useful phone numbers and addresses

To travel through Madrid, there are a series of telephone numbers that would be good to have with you. Save them on your phone or write them down:

Airport: +34 902 404 704

Emergencies: 112

Serious Medical Emergencies: 061

National Police: 091

Local Police: 092

Firemen: 080

Night Pharmacies: 098

Radio taxi: +34 91 540 45 00

Independent taxis: +34 91 405 12 13

RENFE trains: +34 902 24 02 02

Foreign Tourist Services (SATE): +34 902 102 112

Fiestas and traditions

Madrid is an incredible, happy, cosmopolitan city, capable of joining tradition and the avant-garde with a full calendar of festivals, which will delight any traveler. DFLAT Madrid lay out the most important festivals:

New Year's Eve. If you plan to visit Madrid between December 31st and January 6th, there are two things you cannot miss. Come to the Puerta de Sol to celebrate with thousands of Madrid locals and tourists from around the world, welcoming in the New Year, and eat 12 grapes in time with the 12 rings of the bells at midnight. On January 5th, enjoy the Parade of the Three Wise Men. A fantastic plan, especially if you're traveling with children.

San Isidro Festivities. May 15th is the big festival. For a few days before and after this date, Madrid organizes a bunch of cultural, musical, and bullfighting events. It is essential to visit the San Isidro meadow and drinkt the water of the saint.

Veranos de la villa. In order to cool down from the summer heat, the local government, during the months of July and August, organizes a series of theater events, open-air movie showings, concerts, etc.

Verbena de la Paloma. From August 6th to 15th, Madrid gets really pretty and shows off its finest. Don't be surprised if you see girls in traditional dresses accompanied by their partners to dance the traditional Madrid dance, the "chotis".

Autumn Festival. For five weeks, Madrid pays homage to theater with good discounts. This is a great opportunity to get into any theatre and enjoy the performing arts live.

Virgen del Pilar. On October 12th is the Virgin of Pilar festival, centered in the neighborhood of the same name and also in the Salamanca neighborhood. Tourists can enjoy live music, games, juggling, open-air dances, etc.

Festival of La Almudena. This is the patron Virgin Mary of the city and in November, a series of acts in her honor are organized. DFLAT Madrid recommend you to go to the Plaza Mayor and attend the floral offering where all women with the name of Almudena are called to participate.

December. Plaza Mayor fills with Christmas stands where tourists can buy decorations and mementos connected to this time of year.

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