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Madrid_at Christmas

Christmas is one of the most special times of the whole year. And we like to celebrate it in a unique way. As the capital of a Catholic country, Madrid really goes to town at Christmas. 

There are many activities to do, from Christmas markets and holiday lights to nativity scenes and the Three Kings Parade and of course, eating out. Christmas Eve is one of our principal celebrations in Spain, which means you´ll need to rush to find a restaurant for the special eve. Restaurants take bookings months in advance. Then if you have plans on eating out on Christmas Day, you are probably late.

But don´t worry because there are so many options to spend an amazing night at Christmas in Madrid. In Madride Travel, we like to explore everything the city has to offer you on this holiday. Here it is some of the most frequent;

Christmas Market

The Chrismas markets (mercadillos de navidad, mercado navideño). 

There are many running for various duration over the Christmas period. With traditional goods, artisanal handcrafted gifts of a delicious gourmet treat, you will wish to visit all of them.

  • Plaza Mayor:   The most classic of all the Christmas markets starting in mid-November and lasts until the end of the year. With more than 100 stalls, a brightly lit carousel and a festive atmosphere that will make you feel the Christmas spirit from the moment you arrive. Also, the same place where so many join us to help the homeless at Christmas in Madrid.
  • Plaza Callao: Every year, Spain’s main department store, El Corte Inglés, installs a huge winter cabin on Plaza de Callo, a central square just off the Gran Vía shopping street. The festive cabin sells Christmas accessories, including baubles, tinsel, and lights, and is a popular spot for locals and tourists to stock up on their Christmas decorations. The square is dominated by a gigantic Christmas tree that is the ideal backdrop for that festive selfie.

You also will find other spectacular Christmas Market around Plaza de Espana, Plaza La Luna, Opera, and Plaza de Santo Domingo. All of them, tend to open from 9:00 pm – 10:00 pm.

But let us tell you, Markets is not all that we have to offer you at Christmas. If you are in Madrid for the holidays, you can not leave without taking a walk to see Christmas lights. So that you can see for yourself how gorgeous the city looks like.

Christmas Lights

Traditionally, the major of the city inaugurates the Christmas lights on the last Friday of November. At the end of the ceremony, the major activates an electric switch and the magic invades the streets. 

Much of Madrid is covered in Christmas lights every year, but the ones listed here are the most spectacular. The Christmas lights are turned on in late November and turned off in early January.

  • Gran Via in central Madrid
  • Puerta del Sol in central Madrid
  • Paseo de la Castellana/Paseo del Prado in central Madrid
  • Calle Goya and Calle Ortega y Gasset in the Barrio Salamanca district 

By walk or with the traditional Naviluz Christmas bus, you must take a tour to see the lights. 

The Madrid Traveller mentions an amazing 12 stop to do by walk and not miss any part of the lights. Or if you want to get into an authentic Christmas fairytale this year, without moving too much, go and check out Las Luces del Real Jardín Botánico. A Christmas light show at the Royal Botanical Gardens.

One important thing you can not miss at Christmas in Madrid if you are a devotee or not if to see the Nativity Scenes

Nativity Scenes

For the mayor of Spaniard, the religion aspect of Christmas are very serious. That´s why it is not a surprise, that the story of the birth of Jesus Christ, is one priority for the city. 

There no just a couple of Playmobil toys and some toy farmyard animals; the whole of Bethlehem is reproduced. There are nativity scenes all over the city. Throughout December, you will find different locations around the city that show beautiful detail representations of the Nativity Scenes which make the city unique.

Some of the most impressive scenes you can find it at places like:

All exhibitions are open from 10:00 am -08:00 pm and are completely free to visit!

If you keep energy after all this Christmas celebration, join us to celebrate the New Years’ Eve as no one else can do. 

New Years Eve

A wonderful evening to celebrate in Madrid will keep you up until January 1. Madrileños gather in Puerta del Sol for the countdown!

So grab some champagne, don’t forget the grapes and head to the plaza! Once you’ve reached the countdown, you have to try to eat all 12 grapes before the clock stops ringing! If you do, you’ll have good luck for the following year! 

Soon after the final ring everyone will clear out the plaza and head to party the night away!, Pubs, Bars, Disco and fun will take you the whole new year after this experience.

New Year’s Eve in Madrid is one of those things you simply have to experience at least once in your lifetime.

But if you feel it can be too much for a single night. Here in Madrid, we also have preparation before the event. Yes, Pre-New Year Eve, (December 30). We like to practice everything to do it right!

You can come to celebrate the beginning of the year at the Puerta del Sol a day in advance! It’s when they test the clock so you can hear the 12 bells. And if you are looking to stand up the night for parties, disco, and new friends. You can join the Madride Travel team, for our last Pub Crawl of this year. Let´s celebrate all the experiences before the year’s end, as the way we know to do it.

But if you feel it can be too much for a single night. Here in Madrid, we also have preparation before the event. Yes, Pre-New Year Eve, (December 30). We like to practice everything to do it right!

You can come to celebrate the beginning of the year at the Puerta del Sol a day in advance! It’s when they test the clock so you can hear the 12 bells. And if you are looking to stand up the night for parties, disco, and new friends. You can join the Madride Travel team, for our last Pub Crawl of this year. Let´s celebrate all the experiences before the year’s end, as the way we know to do it.

“No matter if we see you in the Christmas Market, walking through the Madrid Christmas Lights or in the Pre-New Year. We wish you the best Christmas you can have and to invite you for another amazing year”.

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