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Depart from your centrally located Madrid hotel and embark on your enriching exploration of Los Austrias. Greet your private guide and listen as the historical scene of the city is set, and the former prosperity of the Hasburg dynasty is brought to life. First, saunter past the impressive Royal Palace of Madrid and hear tales of eccentric emperors who inhabited the regal residence.
Admire the elegant facades of buildings on Calle Mayor then capture photographs outside of Madrid’s oldest church, Iglesia de San Nicolás de los Servitas. Gaze upwards at its enormous bell tower, noting the Moorish influence in the architecture. Venture to the metropolitan Mercado de San Miguel to experience the sophistication of gourmet food stalls and ambient bars, then stroll the city’s undisputed centerpiece, Plaza Mayor.
Watch street performers and engage with intriguing historical tales as you wander around this impressive expanse of Plaza Mayor. Immerse yourself in the bustle of Calle de Toledo as you amble past charming churches and opulent college buildings on your way to Calle Bordadores. See evidence of Madrid’s thriving lace industry through quaint shops originating in the 17th-century, then enjoy the enticing aromas of refined restaurants on Cueva de Luis Candelas.
After 2.5-hours, bid farewell to your guide on Calle del Arenal, a street ideally located to allow further exploration.
There was only the two of us, which was wonderful. Our guide was the sweetest elderly gentleman who was obviously proud to be from Madrid, and more than happy to show it off to foreigners. We saw the major highlights, and got lots of history. A slower pace that we thought it would be, more of a casual stroll, but we enjoyed it immensely.
We really enjoyed this tour and would highly recommend it. It's a great way to get to know the city better and our guide was very knowledgeable and interesting. Our lovely guide also gave us some excellent recommendations for restaurants including a wonderful authentic paella restaurant. If you are dong this in summer - start your tour early morning to avoid the heat and crowds.
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