Madrid is divided into 21 numbered districts (distritos
) each of which is
further subdivided into neighborhoods (barrios
). There are numbers (and official names)
for the barrios, too, but it is safe to say that nobody uses them. In our
classification, we respect the official definition of large distritos
, but stick to the
people actually refer to.
The 1st district is Madrid's cultural, historic, political, and tourist
center. The neighborhoods (barrios) within the district,
defined somewhat informally, include:
Puerta del Sol, Las Cortes, Las Huertas, Paseo del Prado, Parque del Retiro,
Austrias, Atocha, Lavapiés, La Latina (not to be confused with a similarly
named district), Opera, Palacio Real, Gran Vía Callao,
Chueca, Malasaña, and Conde Duque.
#2-#21: Other districts
||13: Puente de Vallecas
||15: Ciudad Lineal
|8: Fuencarral-El Pardo
||18: Villa de Vallecas
||20: San Blas
I've already talked about
my abnormal interest in this very important meal and
how those morning calories are hard to come by in Madrid. Well, given
that nobody here eats much in the morning, you might as well do as the
Madrileños do - that is, eat only un poco
. But where?...
Read the rest of: "Why Faborit is my Favorite. Reason #1: Breakfast
Walking along the Paseo del Prado
yesterday, I couldn't help but notice all those kiosks and stands filled with books. Bookish types were swarming around them like insects.
So, I browsed a little bit and even though most of the material on display was clearly junk, I had to remind myself more than once about airline weight restrictions: otherwise, I would have now had in my possession more than a few 2€ encyclopedias and a handful sub-10€ hard-cover editions of literary classics published in the 70's.
I couldn't figure out the exact dates for this event, but it looks like the stalls will be there for at least a few more weeks.
Don't get me wrong - I love Spanish food. In fact, I adore it.
I can't get enough of all that cocido
, jamón serrano
and tortilla española
, so whenever I am in
Madrid, I basically eat in advance.
Madrid is a city where I can go to a sketchy diner, sit on a bar stool at the counter pretending to be a visiting American, take out a French novel from my pocket... and still
get friendly service along with a hearty, delicious meal - all for less than 10 euros!
But that doesn't help me solve the problem I encounter almost every morning.
My problem is breakfast...
Read the rest of: "VIPS: Breakfast in Madrid
To have a coffee in a literary setting that's oozing atmosphere and tradition in Madrid requires almost no effort. Just walk to the Pasillo de Recoletos
, look for the address plaque that says "21" and open the door to Café Gijón.
Read the rest of: "Café Gijón
¡Feliz Año Nuevo desde Madrid! By the way, this is
Puerta del Sol
on New Year's eve (right around midnight). Did you know that Spaniards eat grapes
instead of drinking champagne during the countdown?
You're supposed to eat exactly twelve during the
last minute of the year - that works out to be one grape every five
seconds, if my Bachelor's degree in Mathematics was worth anything at all.
If you linger or hesitate then it's bad luck. All the grocery shops
around the Puerta del Sol
sell seedless grapes (how is that not cheating?), neatly packed by the dozen.
This is a wonderful sunset view of Los Austrias - my favorite neighborhood in Madrid. Of course, my camera gets all weird in such light, but you get the point. It is beautiful.
If you look closer, you'll notice a plexiglass wall separating the sidewalk from the banisters. It is there for a good reason. Many people, perhaps thoroughly impressed by such views or perhaps for some other reason, have chosen to plunge to their deaths from this very point of the bridge - oh, and by the way, there's a street below (Calle Segovia). Imagine how annoying it used to be for the drivers when some suicidal freak would just make a mess right in front of their car!
Read the rest of: "Postcard from Madrid: Suicide Bridge