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The following day I left the ship and headed for the capital of Spain, Madrid. Rather embarrassingly, I’d never been to Madrid before despite over a dozen visits to España. Inhabitants of Madrid are called Madrilenos and Madridistas are supporters of Real Madrid. 

After checking-in I went walking. The Royal Palace was impressive from the outside, and directly next door was the cathedral. The cathedral looked better from the outside than the inside. The basilica was close by and the complete opposite – spectacular inside. It was an inside outside kind of afternoon. The basilica was well worth five euros. I found the main plaza – Plaza Mayor and watched people go by.

The Basilica
Don Quixote and Sancho Panza

The following morning I walked for 30 minutes through the sunny streets of Madrid to the Prado Museum. Possibly the most visited tourist attraction in Madrid, the Prado had some fabulous art dating back a very long time. Velazquez, Goya, and two of the Ninja Turtles – Rafael and Donatello. I was told not to take photos and I was happy to oblige (most of the time).

He stole my pose!
My guess is inbreeding

Then a little wander around the botanical gardens before heading to another museum to see Pablo Picasso’s Guernica. He named it Guernica after a small town in the Basque region of Northern Spain which was bombed by the Luftwaffe in 1937 at the behest of General Franco. At 11 and a half feet by 25 and a half feet, it’s slightly larger than the Mona Lisa!!

Guernica – most famous anti-war painting in the world

I headed back to the hotel and then the airport. I thoroughly enjoyed my 24 hours in Madrid. I’d like to come again if they’ll have me.

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