Love Madrid

Trip Start Sep 03, 2011
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38
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Trip End Jun 04, 2012


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Where I stayed
Fernandos on Modesto LaFuente

Flag of Spain  , Madrid,
Wednesday, February 22, 2012

We arrived after our 11 and a half hour flight from Lima. We left at 8.30 in the evening and arrived about 3.30pm the next day in Madrid. The flight was reasonably quick and comfortable considering. We pleasantly surprised to learn on arrival that we didn't need to fill out entry forms, we just needed to present our passports and ourselves, fantasic! The airport is huge though, we had to take a subway train from the gate to the main terminal. We figured out the metro and the apartment owner's instructions to the apartment and after a 15min trek from Quatro Camino station with our gear we had arrived to our Madrid destination. We emerged from the subway to find the air cool, crisp and refreshing.  Our 3 bedroom apartment was in a central spot in Madrid close to attractions, supermarkets, transport and it was warm inside.

We spent the week trying to recuperate from jet lag and found ourselves up late trying to find tv shows in English dodging the worse than Australia sexy girls ads late at night and then waking up at 10 or 11 in the morning. We did manage to find some museums, art museums, beautiful parks and fountains. I found Madrid very smooth and clean, full of beautiful architecture modern and old. Maybe because it is flat and spread out it didn't feel closed in and very orderly and organised after South America.

On our way out of Spain we did stop in Barcelona for a day and stayed overnight. I didn't like it as much as Madrid, but fully appreciated the fact that we were looking out to the harbour which was part of the Mediteranean Sea and that we were in amongst some more amazingly old buildings and structures. We walked up to the Parque up on the hill, wandered on top of the old fort, saw stunning views of a spread out and compact city and passed the Olympic Stadium.

Our accomodation was a giggle, it was just off the tourist strip, the" Ramblas" so it was in a convenient spot. After Andrew had booked it in Madrid he saw a review for the hostel and some one had mentioned druggies and prostitutes lurking in the alley late at night. When we arrived to check in in the afternoon we couldn't see it at first and then we were buzzed into the entryway it was dark, smelly, narrow and looked like we were on our way up to some drug den four or five floors up. But we were pleasantly surprised to find a clean and warm room with clean amenities and friendly hostel staff and guests (though I couldn't tell the guests from the staff). We were just there for the night but it was sufficient and clean for our needs.

The next day we made an early exit from the hostel at about 6.45am to make our train to Figueres where we would find a connecting train to FRANCE.
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