Madrid is Europe’s largest metropolitan city, and no doubt a lovely place to be for the holiday season. If this is your first Christmas in the city and you’re unsure of what to do, have no fear, there are plenty of fun and charming festivities happening all around you. Without further ado, here are 9 things to do in Madrid for the holiday season.
1.Christmas Market in Plaza de Espana and Plaza Mayor
Every year, Madrid has Christmas markets pop up during the Christmas and New Years season. These are great places to indulge your sweet tooth, take a date, go with friends, or get some Christmas shopping done. Anything from toys, to crystals, jewelry, and desserts can be found in addition to general festivities and pop up performer.
2.Three Kings Parade
This parade happens sometime after New Years. This particular event is especially fun for children and families! It begins in Nuevos Minesteris and ends in centro around 21:00. The three kings are Melchior, Gaspar and Balthazar, the three wise men (sometimes referred to as Wizards and Alchemists) that journeyed from the Middle East and witnessed what might have been a shooting star or planetary phenomenon.
3.Naturaleza Encendida in the Botanical Gardens
From the 14th of November to the 15th of January, the Botanical Gardens will be showcasing a beautiful fungi themed light show for visitors. The installation will tie in scientific research and be interactive to patrons and visitors, providing insight into various fungi species through a breathtaking, gorgeous, and majestic light-scape.
4. Ice Skating at Palacio or Matadero
Around the Holidays there are many ice skating rinks that will be open to the public in Madrid. Among the crowd favorites are those at Matadero, just a walk from Legazpie metro station, as well as the rink at Palacio! Throw on some skates! This is a perfect place for a date, a hang out with friends, or for a family outing.
5. Win the Lottery
El Gordo is a Christmas Lottery tradition that began in the 19th century. It is hosted in Madrid at Teatro Real in Opera annually. Each year, participants in the lottery stand a chance at winning a whopping 4,000,000 and there can be more than one. While tickets, of course, are not free, you can try your luck as you just might be one of the few to win the El Gordo prize money. The total amount of money that will be dispersed is 2,240,000,000 which means 560 people can be among the lucky few to win.
6. Belen de Navidad