“Life is meant for good friends and great adventures!”
BOOKED! I was spending ten days in Madrid for Spring Break. An excellent way to spend my last one of senior year.
At my school, it was a requirement for my major to study abroad to graduate. They felt it’s important for students to immerse in another culture.
Luckily my two roommates were in the same major or department as me, so we were able to go on the same program together and we room together.
Bring Out the Map
For our trip, we stayed at a homestay with local volunteers. I appreciated it over a hotel because it’s always good to experience a local residence.
My friends and I were laughing when we got to our place because we all shared one room and it felt like we were sleeping on top of each other. My feet were the head of one bed, and my head was the head of another.
The thing I love about traveling to Europe or big cities is getting to ride the metro. There’s something about it I’ve always liked since I was a kid. I think I enjoy the change of pace of being able to walk around use local transportation as opposed to a car.
During the mornings, we would have presentations or visits around the city, and the rest of the day we have to explore the city.
Being athletes, one of our first choices was to check out the Santiago Bernabéu Stadium, the Real Madrid soccer team stadium. One of the highlights of the trip.
We were able to storm the field, view their locker rooms, and see the team’s trophies and titles.
Art & Culture
Just like most of Europe, Madrid has a lot of history and culture with its old style buildings, architecture, museums, and art.
The El Parque del Retiro Park has everything from lakes to botanical gardens to monuments to fountains and museums. It’s a local favorite to enjoy a morning coffee or light lunch as it offers incredible views and plenty of room for the locals and visitors.
We went to many monuments and quite a few museums, the most famous one being Museo Del Prado. I’ve never really been a museum person, but I’ve always been impressed with how much work and detail goes into architecture and art like stained glass.
Chocolate con Churro was unreal! Having churros dipped in a cup full of melted chocolate is a traditional dessert in Spain. The churros were better than any I’ve ever had in the states, and I’m a die hard chocolate lover, so I was in heaven.
We also discovered the Mercado San Miguel in the heart of the city. There was a vast array of tapas and drinks, our favorite being the Mojitos. Overall, lots of great choices and fresh food.
Day Trip to Toledo
Toledo is almost surrounded completely by water and located on a mountaintop which was unique to see.
It’s historically known as the “City of Three Cultures” because it was a place where Christians, Muslims, and Jews lived together.
For the day, we visited an art museum, a monastery, and visited the local shops in the middle of town.
It’s always great to experience new cultures and try new things, and I’m glad I was fortunate to experience Spain with some friends.