Nathan Brenville is a freelance illustrator and animator, who recently gave up life in London to live full time in Madrid. He keeps an illustrated blog about his experiences at www.madridguiri.com .
Top 3 Favorite Restaurants in Madrid?
I must admit I’ve rarely been to the same restaurant twice whilst here in Madrid and I never remember the names anyway – but what I love is the amount of choice – although you do get the odd disappointment, eating tapas at one of the millions of bars is a reliable source of good, simple Spanish food.
Top 3 favorite foods in Spain?
1) Salmorejo: a cold tomato soup that’s not as well known as Gazpacho, but infinitely better in my view, with sprinkles of hard boiled egg and jamon on top
2) Huevos Rotos: The Spanish version of eggs, sausage and chips
Top 3 tips for new expats in Spain
1) Walk whenever possible: The best way to discover a city is on foot – you’ll discover lots more, and understand the geography better.
2) Learn Spanish and don’t just hang out with your fellow expats
3) Be curious! Try new things, be willing to talk to people and investigate whatever you find interesting – you’ll get immersed without even trying!
Top 3 tips for travelers in Madrid
1) Reina Sofia modern art museum is free on Sundays; but you have to go early in the morning if you want to see Picasso’s La Guernica
2) Buy a 10 journey ticket for the metro; it’s easier and slightly cheaper. Also the journey from the airport by metro is straightforward and cheap (about 5 EUR) so usually a better option than taxi
3) A lot of shops close between 2 and 5; as it’s the hottest time of day
Top 3 tips for travelers in Spain
1) Lunchtime is after 2pm: and usually the main meal of the day
2) Midday is a popular time to go out and meet friends for a vermouth
3) Don’t go to a bullfight: Tourism accounts for a large percentage of revenue for bullfighting, and without that money there’d be a little less needless torturing of animals in the world. More information at: http://www.stopbullfighting.org.uk/facts.htm
Top 3 tips for what to pack for Madrid?
1) Sunglasses: One of the things I love about Madrid is it’s almost always sunny!
2) A hat during summer
3) A sketchbook! Anyone can draw! Exploring a new city is a good way to start
Top 3 favorite places in Madrid
1) The Retiro Park has cafes, a boating lake, a conservatory turned art gallery, ornamental gardens, statues, all you could want from a park
2) Museo Sorolla
3) National Archaeological Museum is an oft-overlooked but top class museum
Top 3 neighborhoods in Madrid
1) Malasaña: the best place for going out of a night
2) La Latina: it has a reputation for the best tapas, it’s also a great place to wander, especially on Sunday’s during the Rastro market
3) Las Letras: I just enjoy walking around here, with the Paseo del Prado connecting you to the Prado museum, the Thyssen museum and the Caixa Forum, or wander further and discover the bars along the narrow streets like Las Huertas.
For more tips on life in Madrid, watch the Spain blog and go to his site www.madridguiri.com.
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