Royal Palace

This emblematic palace is intimately related to the Islamic origins of Madrid: it rests where the Emir Mohamed I built a defensive fortress in the 9th century, the seed of medina Mayrit. When the alcazar burned down in 1734, Felipe V, the first of the Bourbon kings, wanted a palace to impress all its European counterparts. The result: 3.418 rooms of monumental and overwhelming presence. No monarch has lived here since 1931, it's used only for official occasions.

Info & location
4 things that makes this place really special
Plaza of the Armoury

The Plaza de la Armería courtyard is the place from which you can best appreciate the palace's scale (also the most beautiful perspective of the cathedral). The colorful changing of the guard takes place at noon on the first Wednesday of every month (except Aug. and Sep.).

The red room of power

An impressive stairway leads to the royal rooms and, finally, to the Salón del Trono (Throne Room), the most luxurious of the palace. The kings no longer sit here, but this place still symbolizes power. Walls and royal seats covered in red velvet, golden lions ... As in the tales.

Exploring the royal kitchens

When you think of a palace you rarely imagine its kitchens, but the visit is worth it. Wonderfully preserved, these are the oldest of all the royal palaces in Europe. You will find huge copper cauldrons, stone piles the size of a bathtub, the first big fridges and more.

Campo del Moro gardens

At the foot of the western facade of Palacio Real, these are one of the most romantic and peaceful gardens in Madrid. Centuries ago they were the place chosen by the Muslim troops to camp while waiting to launch their attacks in order to recover the city.