Museum Guide

Museums in Madrid

Madrid has some of the most renowned museums in the world and attracts many museum-lovers each year. On this page we provide you with an introduction to the most popular museums. Museums in Madrid are quite accessible since most of them offer free entrance for at least a few days per week. Also students, kids and elderly usually receive some form of discount. This makes it easy to go to a museum, if only for a few hours. However, if you are really into art, we advise to take a few days for museum visits only; there is a lot to see!

Museo Arqueológico Nacional
Calle Serrano 13 (metro Ibiza) 
915 777 912
Open: Oct-Apr Mon & Wed-Sat from 10:00-18:00, Sun from 10:00-16:00. May-Sept Mon & Wed-Sat from 11:00-20:00, Sun from 11:00-18:00

This museum has a very large collection of archeological objects from the prehistoric period up to the 19th century. The building is very beautiful from the inside and outside and has a neoclassical style.

The Royal Palace
Calle Bailén (metro Ópera) 
914 548 800
Open: Apr-Sep Mon-Sat from 09:00-18:00, Sun from 09:00-15:00. Oct-Mar Mon-Sat from 09:30-17:00, Sun from 09:00-14:00

The Royal Palace (Palacio Real) is built in 1734 and counts 2800 rooms from which more or less 50 can be visited. It is the official residence of the King of Spain but is only used for official visits. Besides the beautiful palace, you can have a stroll around the gardens and enjoy the nice view it offers you. The palace is located on the Plaza de Oriente; a nice square with beautiful statues and the possibility to relax on the grass, one of the benches or on one of the terraces.

Museo de Artes Decorativas
Calle de Montalbán 12 (metro Retiro) 
915 326 499
Open: Tues-Sat from 09:30-15:00 (Thurs also from 17:00-20:00), Sun from 10:00-15:00

One of the few museums focused on decorative art and consists of mainly furniture, ceramics and decorative art from Spain. The museum is quite big; it houses five floors and sixty rooms and has about 30,000 different objects.

Museo de cera

Paseo de recoletos 41 (metro Colón)
913 192 649
Open: Mon-Fri from 10:00-14:30 & 16:30-20:30. Sat & Sun from 10:00-20:30 

Like the Madame Tussauds, the Museo de Cera shows wax statues; over 450 to be exact. This varies from moviestars to sport heroes to singers both national as international.

Museo de ciencias naturales

Calle José Gutiérrez Abascal 2 (metro Gregorio Marañon)
914 111 328
Open: Tues-Fri from 10:00-18:00, Sat from 10:00-20:00, Sun from 10:00-14:30
Considered as the museum with one of the largest and most important fauna collection of Spain and the Mediterranean. It has over 6 million specimens in its collection and very interesting permanent exhibits. The building itself is very nice as well, designed in the 18th century by Juan de Villanueva.

Museo de las Telecomunicaciones 
Gran Vía 28 (metro Gran Vía)
915 226 645
Open: Tues-Sun from 11:00-21:00

In the huge building of the Fundación Telefónica at Gran Vía you can find the Museo de las Telecommunicaciones, a museum focused on the history and development of the Spanish telecommunications. Take a look at some early telephone models and find replicas of switchboards. Nice for children too.

Museo del Prado

Paseo del Prado (metro Banco de España)
913 302 900
Open: Tues-Sun from 09:00-22:00
Museo del Prado houses about 6000 paintings and sculptures. The painting which attracts most visitors is Las Meninas van Velázquez, a painter who is widely represented throughout the museum. Apart from Velázquez other grand painters in the Prado are (for example) Goya, Rembrandt and Rubens. Apart from the normal collection, the museum houses many temporary exhibitions. A visit to the Prado can't be excluded from your city trip to Madrid.

Museo del Romanticismo
Calle San Mateo 13 (metro Tribunal)
914 480 163
Open: May-Oct Tues-Sat from 09:30-20:30, Sun from 10:00-15:00. Nov-Apr Tues-Sat from 09:30-18:30, Sun from 10:00-15:00

Located inside an eighteenth century palace lays the beautiful Museo del Romanticismo. It is not big but demonstrates very well what life was like for a wealthy family in 19th century Madrid. Also many paintings of Goya are displayed in the stylish rooms decorated with furniture, pianos, chandeliers, etc.

Museo Ferrocarríl

Paseo de las delicias 61 (metro Delicias)
902 228 822
Open: Tues-Sun from 10:00-15:00. Closed in August
This museum houses one of the largest railroad collection in Europe and was placed in the former trainstation in 1971. With maquettes, pictures and old trains this museum gives you a good idea of railway history.

Museo Lázaro Galdiano

Calle de Serrano 122 (metro Gregorio Marañon)
915 616 084
Open: Tues-sun from 10:00-14:00
In this museum you will find one of Spain's most important private collections left by Jose Lázaro Galdiano who left his eclectic collection as well as the house to the State, on the condition that it would be transformed into a museum. You will mostly find paintings, wapens, porcelain and drawings here from various English, Italian and Flemish masters.

Museo Nacional Centro de arte Reina Sofía

Calle Santa Isabel 52 (metro Atocha)
914 675 062
Open: Mon-Sat from 10:00-21:00. Sun from 10:00-14:30
The Reina Sofía is, alongside the Prado and Thyssen museum, one of the most popular museums in Madrid. Here you can admire various paintings from big artists such as Miró, Tápies, Dalí and Picasso (his La Guernica resides here and is one of the famous peaces of the museum). The building is divided into several floors. The first and second floor are reserved for the permanent exhibition while you can find temporary exhibitions on the ground floor and third floor. The building also manifests a beautiful courtyard which sometimes is being used for outside exhibitions.

Museo Sorolla

Paseo General Martínez Campos 37 (metro Gregorio Marañon)
913 101 584
Open: Tues-Sat from 09:30-15:00. Sun from 10:00-15:00
This former house of Joaquín Sorolla shows the works of this post-impressionist painter. His works – often displayed on the exact same spot as where he hang them at the time – are known for their warm colours and Mediterranean lights. Without visiting the museum, you can have a walk through the front yard, designed by Mister Sorollo himself.

Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza

Paseo del Prado 8 (metro Banco de España)
913 690 151
Open: Tues-Sun from 10:00-19:00
The Thyssen collection is considered –after the collection of the British Queen Elisabeth – the single most important personal art collection in the world. The collection belonged to the Thyssen - Bornemisza family and can be seen in the Palacio de Villahermosa since 1993. What makes this collection so special is that it represents many different styles. Recommended is to start at the third floor and work your way down.