Plaza Mayor has played host to a variety of festivities throughout history, including bull fights, executions during the Spanish Inquisition, and soccer matches. The most prominent of the buildings in the plaza is the Casa de la Panadería, or House of the Baker's Guild, which today serves municipal and cultural functions. There are also shops and eateries that occupy the ground level and provide refreshments for hungry and thirsty travelers admiring the square. The plaza is included on most Madrid city tours—including walking tours, biking tours, Segway tours, and food tours—alongside other popular attractions such as the Prado Museum, Royal Palace, Plaza de Oriente, and Plaza de España.
Recent reviews from experiences in Madrid
Things to Know Before You Go
The Plaza Mayor is a major landmark in Madrid and a must-see for first-time visitors.
Visit the plaza as part of a small group or private city tour for a deeper understanding of its history.
When exploring the area, remember to wear comfortable walking shoes.
How to Get There
The easiest way to get to Plaza Mayor on your own is to take the metro (Line 2) to Sol station.
When to Get There
While Plaza Mayor can get crowded, especially during peak summer season, the festive atmosphere is part of its appeal. The plaza is an excellent place to stop for a coffee or a drink in the afternoon, or for an al fresco dinner in the evening.
The Calamari Sandwich
Both Madrid and the restaurants surrounding Plaza Mayor are famous for calamari sandwiches: French bread stuffed with battered and golden-fried squid rings, often served with aioli and a wedge of lemon. Try it with “una caña” a small, ice-cold draft beer.
- Things to do in Toledo
- Things to do in Segovia
- Things to do in Zaragoza
- Things to do in Cordoba
- Things to do in Valencia
- Things to do in Bilbao
- Things to do in Santander
- Things to do in Murcia
- Things to do in San Sebastian
- Things to do in Alicante
- Things to do in Granada
- Things to do in Seville
- Things to do in Castile and León
- Things to do in Aragón
- Things to do in Basque Country
- La Taberna de Mister Pinkleton
- San Miguel Market (Mercado de San Miguel)
- Sobrino de Botín
- Church of San Ginés (Iglesia de San Ginés)
- Madrid Plaza de la Villa
- House Museum of Mouse Perez (Casa Museo de Ratón Pérez)
- La Latina
- Official Real Madrid Store El Carmen
- Essential Flamenco
- Puerta del Sol
- La Cueva de Lola
- Sabatini Gardens (Jardines de Sabatini)
- Royal Monastery of the Incarnation (Real Monasterio de la Encarnación)
- Almudena Cathedral (Catedral de la Almudena)
- Plaza de Oriente
- Madrid Cooking Classes
- Madrid Nightlife
- Wine Tasting Tours from Madrid
- Flamenco in Madrid
- Madrid Football
- Toledo Day Trips from Madrid
- Top Shopping Spots in Madrid
- Things to Do in Madrid This Fall
- Visiting Madrid's Golden Triangle of Art
- Art Lover’s Guide to Madrid
- Where to Find the Best Views in Madrid
- Madrid Neighborhood Guide
- Must-See Museums in Madrid