Saturday, June 15, 2013

Day 4 in Madrid, Walking Around the City, Templo de Debod, Mercado de San Miguel

Today was my last day at the Acapulco Hostal, a small hotel in the center of Madrid.  I was sick most of the time I was at the hotel, I did explore the city some, not as much as I wanted, my first few days here.  I moved to a hostel, no more privacy, but hostels are always good for meeting people, a completely different environment from staying in a hotel.  Hostels are like a college dorm, only you have several roommates, and people from around the world, some speak English, some do not, most speak some English.

Was an easy move from my hotel to the hostel, only two metro stops away.  I started off going the wrong direction on the train, the metro stations are not always clear, luckily I caught my mistake and only went one station out of the way.  When I got to the stop, I asked some metro workers which exist to take, they responded in Spanish with gestures, above ground I asked a waiter at a cafe, I found the street and got to the hostel easily.

The hostel's check in was 2pm, the room was not ready, I decided to hang out in the common area and wait,  I was hoping to get a bottom bunk. I have not had a bottom bunk in several weeks at a hostel, I got one this time, I was happy.  I hung out in the room for awhile, took a nap, and made plans to go to the Templo de Debod, an Egyptian Temple later today.

A hostel mate from Australia showed up later, she joined me for my walk to the Egyptian Temple, she had also spent a few days in Madrid, had been on an Intrepid Tour. Our walk to the temple took about half an hour, we were looking around and trying to be sure we were going to right way. We finally found the temple,  it was in a park, a lot of people were enjoying the Saturday afternoon there.

Lynnae at Templo de Debod 
We spent about an hour at the park near Templo de Debod, then we walked into central Madrid.  Our plan was to get Churros and something for dinner.  The Aussie said the market near Plaza Mayor had good food, we planned to go to a restaurant or the market, we would decide as we got closer.  We went to Plaza de Espana, my second visit, I got my picture with Don Quixote an Sancho Panza this time. After Plaza de Espana we walked to the Royal Palace, through the park and another square, near Madrid's Opera house.

Lynnae and Don Quixote & Sancho Panza Statues in Plaza de Espana
We did not see anything we wanted to eat, so we decided to go to the market.  The food at the Market was delicious, I did  not eat much, I still was not feeling great, but I got to taste the food.  We ordered what are called pinchos, not as big as Tapas, they are for one person, a small sample of food. We went to Plaza Mayor after the market, it is an enclosed plaza, not visible from the street, which is why I missed it on my walk yesterday.  The plaza was crowded, it was a Saturday night, we looked around and then headed for the famous Churros restaurant for desert. 

Mercado de San Miguel, Madrid's Central Market

Pinchos at Mercado de San Miguel

Lynnae in Mercado de San Miguel
We walked to Chocolateria San Gines, famous churros restaurant, not a far walk from the market, it was recommended on the map we got at the hostel.  I knew I was not going to have any churros tonight, still trying to get over being sick, the food at the market was enough for me.  There were pictures of Stevie Wonder and Tina Turner in the churros restaurant, along with many other photos of famous Spaniards we did not recognize. I had a tiny piece of a churro to get a taste, it was good, maybe I will go back before I leave Madrid on Wednesday. 

Entrance to Chocolateria San Gines 

Churros at Chocolateria San Gines 
After the churros we went to the metro station and returned to our hostel.  Was a good night out in Madrid, I had my first pinchos in Spain, was late by the time we got back, but everything starts late in Spain.  Tomorrow, I plan to go to one of Madrid's art museums during free hours and walk around the city some more.

Day 4 in Madrid Photo Album

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