Santiago Bernabeu Stadium — Photo courtesy of Channy Yun
No matter how long your visit is, embracing the local sports culture is a great way to get in on Madrid’s high energy fun. Whether out rooting for the local teams in one of the city’s many sports venues or burning off those glasses of wine in one of Madrid’s beautiful recreational spaces, you’ll soon agree that the local lust for life is infectious. Here are six places in Madrid to try first.
Santiago Bernabéu Stadium
There’s nothing like the unbridled excitement when the locals watch the Spanish capital’s premier sports team, Real Madrid, play. Come to experience it first-hand on the soccer team’s home turf: Santiago Bernabéu Stadium.
Vicente Calderón Stadium
Located beside the Manzanares River, Vicente Calderón Stadium is home to Madrid’s Atlético soccer team. While not as highly decorated as the Real Madrid, Atlético fans are as just passionate and the team’s games are just as much fun to watch.
Plaza de Toros de Las Ventas
The spectacle of live bullfighting stirs up a powerful mix of emotions. Come to watch the blood and artistry at Madrid’s magnificent bullring: Plaza de Toros de Las Ventas.
This multi-sport recreational space along the Manzanares River is a hit for walkers, joggers, cyclists, roller-bladers, soccer players, padel players, rock-climbers, skateboarders and BMX riders, as there is space and equipment for all of them. Come to enjoy the fresh air and burn some calories like the locals.
Casa de Campo
Away from the amusement park, the Casa de Campo is Madrid’s patch of wild. Here there are plenty of paths for jogging and cycling as well as woods perfect for hiking. You’d be forgiven for thinking you were deep in some isolated forest, and not on the edge of Spain’s capital!
Once a royal preserve, Retiro Park is Madrid’s most elegant and best-loved green space. Here you can stroll amidst the gardens and lawns as well as run, row on the lake and play sports like soccer, padel and tennis.