Football fans won’t want to miss a visit to the magnificent Santiago Bernabéu Stadium (Estadio Santiago Bernabéu) , home to the legendary Real Madrid football team. Despite boasting a capacity of 81,000 spectators and reaching a 5-star rating as a UEFA-classified Elite Stadium, Santiago Bernabéu is actually Spain’s second-largest football stadium, after Barcelona’s Camp Nou.
Watching a match at the famous stadium, a 4-time European Cup finals host, is a memorable experience for any football fanatic—especially Real Madrid fans, who want to see iconic players like Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale, and Karim Benzema in action. But if you’re not lucky enough to score tickets for a match, you can still visit the grounds. Fan tours allow behind-the-scenes access to the stadium, where you can take the elevator to the top of the stadium towers for an impressive panoramic view and then walk in the footsteps of your heroes across the pitch. You’ll also get to sneak a peek into the locker rooms, presidential box, press room, and trophy room—and even walk through the players’ tunnel. The stadium is also a stop on many Madrid city sightseeing tours. Tickets can be purchased at the box office or in advance.
Things to Know Before You Go
- The Santiago Bernabéu is a must-see for any soccer fan.
- Don’t forget your camera—stadium fan tours afford many memorable photo ops.
- Guided city tours with entrance to the stadium can last anywhere from one to four hours. A stadium fan tour takes about 45 minutes.
- The entire stadium tour isn’t wheelchair accessible, but wheelchair users can visit the Best Club in History room, Sensations room, and the substitute bench.
How to Get There
The easiest way to reach Santiago Bernabéu is by taking the metro (Line 10) to Santiago Bernabéu station. Several city buses also stop outside the iconic stadium.
When to Get There
The stadium is open for tours daily throughout the year. On match days, tours stop five hours before kick-off.
Watching a Real Madrid Match
Nothing quite matches the excitement of seeing a live Real Madrid match inside their historic stadium. If you want to snag tickets, keep in mind that it’s easier the earlier in the season you plan to attend. High-profile matches against rivals F.C. Barcelona are very difficult to acquire (and often very expensive). Plan to buy tickets at least two weeks before the match to avoid the disappointment of a sold-out stadium.