First Stop - To the Egyptian Temple!

Madrid Travel Blog

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Start of Day 2 off Calle De Arenal
Early Rise & Shine - Not.

When we got home last night around midnight, we set our alarm to 6:30am so we could wake up early... ha! John and I ended up waking up at 8:30 instead :) It was my fault though because I was the one who hit snooze and eventually turned the alarm off. Quickly got ready and headed upstairs to the hotel breakfast room.

Breakfast was wonderful! We walked in and were seated by a man who was managing that morning. He told us where to sit and after that we headed over to the buffet area. Selection was very good. We were able to choose from: coffee, decaf coffee, espresso, milk, orange juice, apple juice, many flavors of yogurt, variety of cereals, variety of breads, a toaster oven to toast our bread, jams, fresh fruit and canned fruit, pastries, croissants, sausages, scrambled eggs, sunny side up eggs, TORTILLAS!, different slices of cured meats and cheeses.
Madrid streets
My favorites were the fresh cut kiwi, canned peaches, white bread with scrambled eggs, tortillas, provolone cheese and several slices of cured meats. My morning drink - 3 shots of espresso with milk and a packet of sugar. I was so happy knowing I had another 2 days of this wonderful breakfast ;)

First main stop: The Egyptian Temple - Temple De Debod

Walked west from Puerta Del Sol, taking mini-stops here and there to take pictures and to wander little side streets. John and I took peeks at the Royal Palace, Sabatini Garden and other monuments on the way. Weather was great! Almost clear skies, bright sun with a cool breeze. It took us about 35 minutes to get to the Temple with all of our stops. We arrived at the steps where there was a sign "Temple De Debod" and were greeted by a sculpture of a man on his side.
Temple De Debod. This site is on the west side of Madrid. About 15-20 minute walk from Puerta del Sol.


The temple is located near Park Oeste, or in it (I can't tell). After going up the stairs we couldn't miss the Temple. It was right in front of us! We walked around the Temple and then went inside. It was very neat to go in and see the writings and images on the wall, literally. Upstairs (narrow staircase btw) had a model of how the Temple was used and miniature figures carrying food and supplies inside the temple. Viewing everything inside the Temple didn't take too long. Behind the temple was a small fountain with a view of the city. Er, at least I think it's the city. There wasn't much left to see after going inside so John and I ventured around the park. The park was nice and huge - large pathways, cherry blossoms and lush green grass. I have to say that it was a wierd feeling seeing an Egyptian Temple in a park.
Palace + fountain :)
Odd couple? Well, odd or not, I enjoyed my visit and was ready to get to our second stop, the Prado Museum.

Heading east to the Prado!

Instead of going back the same route, we decided to walk through the gates leading to Sabatini Garden which lead us to a great view of the Royal Palace. The garden was a nice place for people to take a break and relax. Couples sitting on benches, locals reading a book (I think they were locals, hard to tell), kids running around and conversations of other tourists deciding where to go next (I couldn't help but hear ;)). We headed up the stairs to exit the garden and ventured around the Royal Palace some more. Took pictures of the ground, where pebbles made the shape of a V - eye catching. Watched a Beatles figurine concert by street performers, watched a dog that didn't move (the dog was quite funny, it stood still for minutes waiting for the best opportunity to pounce on a bird), saw the churches and looked through the gates of the Palace.
I believe this is a church across from the Palace's south entrance. Look at the crowds!
As we continued our walk, the wind suddenly kicked up and dust was blowing everywhere. John got dust in his eyes and the trees branches looked like they were about to lose every leaf they had. The harsh winds didn't last too long, but it was definitely odd. Because of the drastic change in weather, we decided to take a detour and stop by our hotel to change before hitting up the Prado. Before getting to the hotel we passed by and took pictures of Plaza De Villa and Plaza Mayor.

We finally reach the Prado around noon and I was surprised that there was no line! Took a few pictures of the exterior and walked in. Going through security felt a little bit like going through airport security, but half as fast. I didn't need to take off my belt, shoes or jacket, but had to drop my camera and purse on the moving belt to be scanned.
After entering, we had no clue which way to go. We picked up a map and consulted with Rick Steve's, but got to a point where we picked a hallway and began wandering around as we pleased. I made an effort to see the roman statues, but other than it was aimless walking. Unfortunately I wasn't able to take any pictures sine it wasn't allowed. Our trip inside the Prado didn't last too long. We hadn't eaten since breakfast and energy was running low. Looked at a few more paintings and decided to hunt for food.

Got Food? Retiro Park Does!

Walking out of the museum was different than walking in - there was a long line of visitors waiting to enter! Maybe we got lucky by entering the museum during lunchtime, but we were sure glad we didn't have to go through that queue.
Atocha across the street
We would've never made it in with our starving tummies.

I remembered reading in Rick Steve's about a cafe at the Atocha station overlooking the garden, so we decided to walk to Atocha for our lunch since it wasn't too far of a walk (it was also on my list of places to see). As we were getting closer to Atocha, we could see the station from the road but had no idea where the cafe could be. We didn't see a garden and couldn't imagine a cafe nearby if we couldn't find the garden. We kept walking around until we saw an entrance for Retiro Park. Since walking through Retiro was on my list of things-to-do and it was a Sunday, when supposedly it has a carnival like atmosphere, we concluded to give up on eating at Atocha and walk through Retiro (with high hopes of finding food as well).
Playground in Retiro Park.


Our stroll through the gates/entry was peaceful. The day was still sunny and the gusty wind was gone. There were quite a bit of people in the park sprawled all over the place. Kids with parents at the playground, people eating their lunch on the grass, people sleeping on the grass, some with their nose in a book, and couples making out under a tree. As with Parque de Oueste, the paths were very wide - enough room for rollerbladers to go all over the place and not worry about running into people. Cars were also able to drive on the same road walked on.

We reached an end to the path we started on and saw a little corner stand with FOOD! It was a quaint sandwich shop that seemed to be run by a family. We walked in and I saw my new favorite food on the poster on the wall - TORTILLAS sandwich.
The fallen angel, Lucifer
I knew what I was getting! John initially wanted something that was no longer available at that hour and ended up ordering their ham and cheese sandwich. Our sandwiches were served in convenient sleeves and we bought some Fanta from a vending machine. We sat outside the shop and ate our lunch - Yum! It was nice to sit down and enjoy the moment. We had a view of "El Angel Caido", the only statue in the world in honor of Lucifer (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:AngelCaido.jpg) and I couldn't help but people watch. I did have one concern at the time - tree branches were above us and I was hoping that the birds didn't need to use the restroom on our heads or lunch.

We sat for a few more minutes after finishing our sandwiches and then headed off to see the rest of the park.
Fountain, lots of people and little blue boats
As we were walking I noticed a building to my right and wondered what it was. From where we were the structure didn't look too exciting and John and I decided to pass on it. As we kept going, I was wondering where the Crystal Palace was located since that was one of my places to see inside Retiro. Then we thought, was it the building we just passed it? We reached the lake where the Mausoleum of Alfonso XII was located and realized that it had to be, but by then we didn't feel like turning back to view it (even though it would've taken us no more than 5 minutes to get back there). The lake and the mausoleum were a sight to see. So many more people were hanging out in that area and around the monument. Little blue boats were floating all over. There were push carts full of candy, chips, nuts and drinks.
Puerta de Alcalá
Street performers dotted the area in addition to artists trying to sell their work. We even saw someone dressed up as Tigger near the fountains! We went on walking towards the main entrance of the park to exit and saw a nice church and the monument Puerta de Alcala.

Puerta de Alcala
The monument had a variety of flowers in front and behind. It was in the middle of the roads so cars were on all sides of me and John. Definitely something to see without taking much time.  After a few photos, John and I didn't know where to go next. It was almost 5pm and it was too early for dinner, but too late to go into another museum or tourist site.  Without knowing where to go, we just started walking...

Plaza de Cibeles
I don't know how, but we ended up at Plaza de Cibeles.
Plaza De Cibeles
This was great since I wanted to see it too and totally forgot about it earlier. It was a little hard getting decent pictures without cars or crossing the street to get closer (which we didn't do). And then a brief sadness came over me. I saw a red flashing battery symbol on my camera's LCD. oh.no. :( To prolong my battery life, I turned off my camera and only used it when I really really wanted a photo.

And we continued walking...

Sangria, Sun & Plaza Mayor

We decided to go back to Plaza Mayor to grab a drink and relax in the sun. There were so many people there! Large groups of friends would sit in the middle of the Plaza hanging out. There were people sitting outside at the tables eatting appetizers or just drinking beers.
Plaza Mayor! My last pic for a few hours since my battery died right after this.
Lots of people were still walking and shopping around. We picked a restaurant where we were facing the sun and sat outside as well. John ordered a beer and I got sangria. We hung out there for a while, partly because the waiter forgot about my drink :) A man with a classical guitar soon pulled a chair in front of us and started playing and singing. His performance lasted about 30 minutes before he got up asking for donations. While we were there I took one more photo before my battery completely died on me. From Plaza de Cibeles to Plaza Mayor, I got 8 more pictures in :D. The sun was setting and the temperature was dropping like crazy. We headed back to the hotel again to put on some warmer clothes and charge my camera battery for the evening.

Madrid at Night

With my battery partially charged and layered with more clothing, we headed out again to see Madrid at night and grab some dinner.
Madrid at night - beautiful
  Madrid is such a lively city. I loved walking around and having so many people out and about like us. John and I didn't have specific sites to go to for the night. We just wanted to wander and see the city as locals would, or tried as best we could. I saw an Aprilia bike while we were out. I very much wanted to take it home with me :( We also passed by a local store called Museo de Jamon - we saw this several times throughout the city and vowed to try it before we leave. We also strolled back to Plaza Mayor to get some night pics since my camera was dead earlier.  And then we got hungry for dinner.

Pans & Co.
We decided on eating at Pans & Co. after passing by several of them throughout the day and wanted to eat something fairly cheap and quick.
Our view during dinner at Pans & Co.
The look and atmosphere of Pans was similar to a fast food restaurant. We decided what to order and John walked up to the cashier. The end result: we got our sandwiches just fine, but we only wanted one drink and ended up conveying to the cashier that we wanted two. It was quite funny :)

My order was the Alpino, which had chicken, brie and mushrooms on an onion baguette. John ordered a steak sandwich with bellpeppers. They were both very good! The bread was perfectly toasted - outside was crunchy and inside was warm and fluffy. John's chunks of steak in the sandwich were huge! They were like cubed steaks. Still very good though. I liked the sandwiches so much that I knew I wanted to eat there again over the next few days.

Earlier that day we passed by a group of people sitting outside eating what looked like fried donut sticks and dipping the sticks in melted chocolate.
Churros & Chocolate! Can't visit Madrid without eating these :)
It looked so good that we went looking for it after dinner and found it! The dessert is called churros & chocolate - and it was extremely delicious. Very rich though. I couldn't eat more than a couple of pieces.

Filling our tummies with sandwiches and chocolates got us in a food coma. Ready to pass out, we walked back to the hotel, took some more pictures and called it a night.
ienjoybeingagirl says:
Your blog and pictures make me miss Madrid so much!! They also made me very hungry, I love the food in Madrid...esp the churros con chocolate :-)
Posted on: Sep 17, 2007
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Start of Day 2 off Calle De Arenal
Start of Day 2 off Calle De Arenal
Madrid streets
Madrid streets
Temple De Debod. This site is on t…
Temple De Debod. This site is on …
Palace + fountain :)
Palace + fountain :)
I believe this is a church across …
I believe this is a church across…
Atocha across the street
Atocha across the street
Playground in Retiro Park.
Playground in Retiro Park.
The fallen angel, Lucifer
The fallen angel, Lucifer
Fountain, lots of people and littl…
Fountain, lots of people and litt…
Puerta de Alcalá
Puerta de Alcalá
Plaza De Cibeles
Plaza De Cibeles
Plaza Mayor! My last pic for a few…
Plaza Mayor! My last pic for a fe…
Madrid at night - beautiful
Madrid at night - beautiful
Our view during dinner at Pans & C…
Our view during dinner at Pans & …
Churros & Chocolate! Cant visit M…
Churros & Chocolate! Can't visit …
Monument east of the Royal Palace.
Monument east of the Royal Palace.
Monument and Royal Palace behind me
Monument and Royal Palace behind me
Monument again
Monument again
Same monument, different side.
Same monument, different side.
Beautiful day!
Beautiful day!
View of the path from the monument
View of the path from the monument
We couldnt fit the whole palace i…
We couldn't fit the whole palace …
Geez, the palace is huge!
Geez, the palace is huge!
Thats my darlin and the Royal Pal…
That's my darlin and the Royal Pa…
One of the many statues lining the…
One of the many statues lining th…
Al Cabo Noval Monument near the Ro…
Al Cabo Noval Monument near the R…
More details...
More details...
Buildings on the other side of the…
Buildings on the other side of th…
These men are all over the place!
These men are all over the place!
East of the Royal Palace.
East of the Royal Palace.
Royal Palace (north end) and Sabat…
Royal Palace (north end) and Saba…
Palace and Garden
Palace and Garden
Sabatini Garden next to the Palace…
Sabatini Garden next to the Palac…
One of the gates leading to the Ga…
One of the gates leading to the G…
Another entrance that leads to Sab…
Another entrance that leads to Sa…
Path we took to get to the Temple
Path we took to get to the Temple
Getting closer! When we reached th…
Getting closer! When we reached t…
And then there were signs... ;)
And then there were signs... ;)
Unfortunately, I dont remember wh…
Unfortunately, I don't remember w…
We made it!
We made it!
Man on his side. Greetings, he s…
Man on his side. "Greetings", he …
Temple De Debod.
Temple De Debod.
Temple De Debod
Temple De Debod
Another view from the Temple
Another view from the Temple
View from Temple De Debod
View from Temple De Debod
It was pretty big...
It was pretty big...
Entrance to the Temple.
Entrance to the Temple.
Back side of the Temple. There was…
Back side of the Temple. There wa…
Temple 411.
Temple 411.
Entrance in - it was free too!
Entrance in - it was free too!
inside Temple dedebod.. howd this…
inside Temple dedebod.. how'd thi…
Inside the Temple.
Inside the Temple.
Pretty cool stuff.
Pretty cool stuff.
inside the Temple
inside the Temple
Inside the Temple
Inside the Temple
I wonder what this story is about.…
I wonder what this story is about…
Inside the Temple
Inside the Temple
This photo was taken behind the te…
This photo was taken behind the t…
View from behind the Temple.
View from behind the Temple.
Cherry Blossoms in the park
Cherry Blossoms in the park
Its interesting to see an Egyptia…
It's interesting to see an Egypti…
Statue in Parque del Oueste
Statue in Parque del Oueste
Last shot of the Temple. Were hea…
Last shot of the Temple. We're he…
The parks map
The park's map
Its the Palace again!
It's the Palace again!
Straight view of the Palaces nort…
Straight view of the Palace's nor…
The other entrance to Sabatini Gar…
The other entrance to Sabatini Ga…
I liked this building.
I liked this building.
Weve left the temple and are walk…
We've left the temple and are wal…
Interesting...
Interesting...
Palace + armanijohnny
Palace + armanijohnny
Goya statue outside of the Prados…
Goya statue outside of the Prado'…
Madrid streets
Madrid streets
Plaza De Cibeles - darn cars..
Plaza De Cibeles - darn cars..
Madrid streets
Madrid streets
Madrid streets - look at the line …
Madrid streets - look at the line…
Plaza De Cibeles - very nice, but …
Plaza De Cibeles - very nice, but…
Details of Puerta de Alcalá
Details of Puerta de Alcalá
Puerta Del Sol shopping area - Loo…
Puerta Del Sol shopping area - Lo…
Madrid at night
Madrid at night
Madrid city streets at night
Madrid city streets at night
Ice creeeam :)
Ice creeeam :)
Puerta de Alcalá (right outside R…
Puerta de Alcalá (right outside …
Schwepps building - very bright at…
Schwepps building - very bright a…
Couldnt help but snap this Lotus …
Couldn't help but snap this Lotus…
Madrid at night. Very lively
Madrid at night. Very lively
I wanted to take this home :(
I wanted to take this home :(
I thought this was interesting. Th…
I thought this was interesting. T…
Near Plaza De La Villa
Near Plaza De La Villa
Look through the arch and its Pla…
Look through the arch and it's Pl…
These signs helped :)
These signs helped :)
street outside Plaza Mayor
street outside Plaza Mayor
Plaza De La Villa
Plaza De La Villa
Somewhere in the west side of Madr…
Somewhere in the west side of Mad…
Were by the Palace again, looking…
We're by the Palace again, lookin…
I thought it was pretty cool :)
I thought it was pretty cool :)
Beatles performance. It was cute. …
Beatles performance. It was cute.…
Fun :) Its great seeing others ha…
Fun :) It's great seeing others h…
Entrance to get into the Palace.
Entrance to get into the Palace.
Another church down the street.
Another church down the street.
Madrid streets - this one is Calle…
Madrid streets - this one is Call…
I couldnt NOT take this picture :)
I couldn't NOT take this picture :)
Fountain in Sabatini
Fountain in Sabatini
Another view. You can see in the b…
Another view. You can see in the …
North face of Royal Palace
North face of Royal Palace
View from the Palace
View from the Palace
Exiting out. Wheres my darlin?!
Exiting out. Where's my darlin?!
Police! i didnt do it :)
Police! "i didn't do it" :)
Retiro park
Retiro park
Outside the Prado
Outside the Prado
Gates to enter/leave Retiro
Gates to enter/leave Retiro
Look at all the people in the park…
Look at all the people in the par…
Gates to enter/leave Retiro
Gates to enter/leave Retiro
View from inside Retiro Park looki…
View from inside Retiro Park look…
Church right outside Retiro
Church right outside Retiro
Its the street thing again, but t…
It's the street thing again, but …
Signs are good :)
Signs are good :)
Retiro Park
Retiro Park
Retiro Park, near the entrance
Retiro Park, near the entrance
Puerta de Alcalá outside Retiro g…
Puerta de Alcalá outside Retiro …
Me and Puerta de Alcalá:)
Me and Puerta de Alcalá:)
Puerta de Alcalá
Puerta de Alcalá
armanijohnny and Puerta de Alcalá…
armanijohnny and Puerta de Alcal…
Were in Madrid!
We're in Madrid!
Madrid streets
Madrid streets
Details atop of Puerta de Alcalá
Details atop of Puerta de Alcalá
Other side of Puerta de Alcalá
Other side of Puerta de Alcalá
Another one of Retiro Parks many …
Another one of Retiro Park's many…
Retiro Park
Retiro Park
Retiro Park
Retiro Park
Leaving the Prado going towards At…
Leaving the Prado going towards A…
A monument we passed after leaving…
A monument we passed after leavin…
To Atocha!
To Atocha!
One of the entries into Retiro Park
One of the entries into Retiro Park
Statue in the park near the entran…
Statue in the park near the entra…
These were seen in the ground as w…
These were seen in the ground as …
Me and a fountain in Retiro
Me and a fountain in Retiro
Lunch! My Tortilla sandwich :) yum…
Lunch! My Tortilla sandwich :) yu…
My darlins (armanijohnny) ham and…
My darlin's (armanijohnny) ham an…
This was our view as we ate.
This was our view as we ate.
Armanijohnny in Retiro park, by th…
Armanijohnny in Retiro park, by t…
This time its me...
This time it's me...
In Retiro Park
In Retiro Park
We even saw Tigger in the park!
We even saw Tigger in the park!
Prado Museum
Prado Museum
Madrid city streets - lovely!
Madrid city streets - lovely!
The bear in Puerta Del Sol :)
The bear in Puerta Del Sol :)
We stopped by our hotel on the way…
We stopped by our hotel on the wa…
Back out again and to the Prado
Back out again and to the Prado
Madrid streets
Madrid streets
Forgot what this was
Forgot what this was
Plaza De Las Cortes
Plaza De Las Cortes
Near Plaza Cortes
Near Plaza Cortes
Madrid streets
Madrid streets
Madrid streets
Madrid streets
Plaza De La Villa
Plaza De La Villa
Plaza Mayor at night
Plaza Mayor at night
Plaza Mayor - I didnt notice the …
Plaza Mayor - I didn't notice the…
Plaza Mayor at night
Plaza Mayor at night
Museo de Jamon at night
Museo de Jamon at night
Last picture for the night. Hotel …
Last picture for the night. Hotel…
Shopping area near our hotel and P…
Shopping area near our hotel and …
Puerta Del Sol
Puerta Del Sol
Madrid at night, near Puerta Del S…
Madrid at night, near Puerta Del …
Alfonso XII Monument in Retiro
Alfonso XII Monument in Retiro
madeleine + armanijohnny in Retiro…
madeleine + armanijohnny in Retir…
Madrid
photo by: vulindlela