The capital of Spain attracts more tourists every year than Barcelona, and is one of the biggest municipalities in the EU, just behind London and Berlin – It’s a very modern city with a very historic feel. It’s the central hub of one of the most vibrant, colourful cultures in the world, and the essence of Spain is present in every nook and cranny of the city. By day, there’s always a party vibe in the city centre, with loads of street performers, and little shops and bars that’ll gladly have you for lunch, or that all-important hangover breakfast. English is a popular language with the locals, so the language barriers should be few and far between, although if you’re after the true continental experience there are plenty of local places to practise your GCSE Spanish knowledge, although, how useful ‘¿Tos hijos van a la escuela?’ is, we’re not too sure! By night, there’s a huge repertoire of bars, clubs, restaurants and cafés that’ll tickle your fancy for a late-night fiesta!
A Madrid stag weekend is a great choice for those who like to be immersed in a vibrant culture. Madrid’s known for its friendly, relaxed atmosphere, where tight curfews still haven’t really come into effect. As a top tourist destination it's got spectacular outdoor parks such as ‘El Retiro' where you can take a boat ride out on the lake while being entertained by the lakeside performers and marvel at the presence of ‘El Angel Caido' - the only public statue in existence in dedication to the devil. Jaw-dropping art and cultural centres abound in Madrid with The Prado, Thyssen and Reina Sofia Museums regarded as the ‘big three'. These attract millions of tourists to Madrid on their merits alone and fans of Goya and Picasso will delight in the abundance of masterpieces by these national heroes. Look out for ‘Guernica' Picasso's famed depiction of the Spanish civil war at the Reina Sofia, possibly the most beloved and moving piece by the Spanish cubist.
Madrid offers tons of great opportunities to experience something a little different, such as baby bull running, Arabian baths and laser combat. There are lots of more traditional activities to undertake as well, such as woodland paintballing, football match tickets, and even pro karting on Spain’s national championship circuit! You definitely won’t be short of things to do when you book your stag weekend in Madrid with us at Chillisauce!
Stick with us and you'll wine and dine like kings. There'll be no need to decipher cryptic menus or tucking into mysterious things that may or may not be chicken/fish/cat. We'll sort you out with good value, tasty eateries that will give everyone an authentic taste of spicy Spain. Spaniards don't tend to eat their evening meal until 9pm and bars don't tend to kick off until well after 11pm so if you're after good atmosphere it's best to pace yourself - no passing out before 1am please!
A Note on Catalan Cusine:
Be sure to try patatas bravas, Spain's answer to chips, smothered in a ridiculously spicy tomato sauce. If you're of the carnivorous persuasion, then you’re in the right place! The variety of meats on offer will send you into a meat-munching frenzy! A good base to start is with the succulent Serrano ham, one of Madrid’s tastiest exports. Then there are the all-time favourites that never fail to fill the void, like Chorizo sausage and the abundant fresh seafood. Don't miss the barbequed squid, marinated sardines and fresh shell fish. Classic Catalan dishes to try are the Bacalla a la llauna (salted cod baked in tomato, garlic, parsley, paprika and wine) and the Truita de Botifarra (sausage omelette) which has ‘hangover cure' written all over it.
The set of bars and clubs you choose on your weekend will make or break your time away. We've done the homework for you so you can hit the ground running. We've found a great set of pubs, bars and clubs that readily accept stag groups and all come with the all important Chillisauce stamp of approval. This is wine country. It is also beer country. Though you can‘t really go too wrong, be on the lookout for Estrella Damm and Moritz lagers as they are firm local favourites – and hey – 6.5 million locals can’t be wrong, can they!
Madrid: Don't Miss!
- Check out ‘Las Ventas’, the biggest bullfighting ring in Spain. Bullfights are held every day during the festivities of ‘San Isidro’ (Madrid's patron saint) from the middle of March to the middle of June, and every Sunday, and public holiday, the rest of the season.
- Check out the Puerta Del Sol, one of the city’s most active and popular plazas, a big hit with the younger generation!
- Nothing beats Sunday afternoon in Retiro Park. Situated behind the Prado museum, it is the most popular and widely visited park in Madrid. On a Sunday afternoon you will see Madrileños walking with their families in the park and being entertained by the multitude of street entertainers.
Travelling by car isn’t usually the method of choice for a stag weekend, as you’re usually bladdered all the time – luckily for you, Madrid has one of the most extensive metro networks in the world, second only to the good old London Underground. It runs with a frequent service (every 2-3 minutes during rush hour, every 4-6 minutes up until after midnight, every 15 mins after midnight.) Be aware though, the system closes down at 1:30am, before the clubs close up for the morning, so if you’re out on the town for a big one, make sure you’ve got a way of getting back to the hotel!
Expect the winter months to verge on chilly, even with some light snowfall once in a blue moon, but if you're from north of the M25, you'll still think it's summer as it never usually gets colder than 7 degrees Celsius. Things start to heat up after Easter and the mercury continues to rise culminating in peak August temperatures of 39 degrees.
Madrid Fact File:
- When you get off the plane in Madrid set your watches one hour ahead of GMT.
- Tipping is not customary on top of restaurant service charges but leaving a few euros will be warmly appreciated.
- The currency of Spain is the Euro - check www.xe.com for the latest exchange rates.