Snapshots from Madrid

Last week, I shared several photographs of my first afternoon in Girona, Spain that I hope gave you a flavor of the city. For this week’s Travel Photo Thursday, I’m posting snapshots from Madrid taken during my brief, but eventful time there. I had only one day to get a taste of the city, but it was a day full of diverse experiences, the most memorable being one that I actually did not photograph. I’ll explain below.

Snapshots from Madrid

You’ve probably heard about the anti-austerity demonstrations that have been taking place in Madrid this week. The last three photos above were taken early in the afternoon as protestors first gathered prior to a march. Later in the evening, things took a violent turn as police and protestors clashed. My personal experience that I did not capture on film was at Atocha Station where Mr. TWS and I went late at night to purchase tickets for Barcelona the next morning. We didn’t get our tickets, but we witnessed some protestors running throughout the station from police, who arrived well-armed in full riot gear. It was a little unnerving as they hurried past us. We rather quickly made our way out of the station, keenly aware of the volatile situation.

There’s still a lot of reporting to catch up on about my trip, so stay tuned!

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56 thoughts on “Snapshots from Madrid

    1. Cathy Post author

      I think a couple of days would be good if you want to check out a few museums and have some quality exploration time. I only visited the Museo Nationale del Prado, but there are many fine museums there.

  1. jan

    I loved your Madrid selection. We were there earlier this year but I did not see the big head statue. It is enormous. There was a huge visible police presence in Madrid when we were there as well. There were riots just before we got there.

    1. Cathy Post author

      Although we were obviously aware of the demonstrations and violence, we were really taken by surprise at the train station that night. Didn’t expect it at all.

    1. Cathy Post author

      There are actually two head sculptures at the Atocha Station, but I liked this picture of just one the best. Yeah, a little creepy.

    1. Cathy Post author

      Thanks. If I compare my time in Madrid to that in Barcelona, Barcelona wins hands-down. But I think I need to spend more time there. That’s a hint for the Madrid tourist board . 😉

    1. Cathy Post author

      That’s a bummer about the camera, Vera. I sometimes just find myself without an SD card in the camera or a dead battery. 🙁

    1. Cathy Post author

      I really need to see more of Madrid sometime. I’d like to experience more non-touristy places like El Rosario that you see in a photo above. Wonderful, authentic dinner there.

  2. Mary {The World Is A Book}

    Beautiful! Madrid is one of my favorite European cities! We were there three years ago and all these street scenes brought back wonderful memories. There were protests in Puerta del Sol during our visit too. I love that baby statue – we didn’t see that one.

    1. Cathy Post author

      It’s interesting about the comments from people who have been in Madrid during protests of one kind of another. These are people who feel passionately about their causes.

    1. Cathy Post author

      Thanks, Laurence. I liked that, too. I just wish I could tell you more about it. It was something I spotted, but couldn’t quite determine the meaning.

    1. Cathy Post author

      It really is interesting. Just got more information on the sculpture and the second one at the same location. The installation is called “Day and Night” by artist Antonio Lopez. The sculpture you can’t see is the baby head with eyes open.

    1. Cathy Post author

      Thanks! I was moving through Madrid so quickly that I could only snap the photos of the art and sculptures without finding out more about them. Read my reply to the previous comment about the sculpture.

    1. Cathy Post author

      I really wished that I could get a few photos at the station, but it just seemed like something that would get me in trouble — with one side or the other. Definitely a unique experience.

    1. Cathy Post author

      Yes, I believe the cop is yawning — it’s one of the things I liked about the photo. Kind of the calm before the storm.

  3. fotoeins | Henry

    I love this city; thanks for your photos! I’m looking forward to going back in November, and hopefully, this time, I’ll get to see a Real Madrid home match at the Bernabeu.

    The big baby head didn’t even faze me; I’ve seen David Cerny’s eyeless babies in Prague 😉

  4. Jackie @

    We spent a week in Madrid last year and your photos brought to mind photos I took of several different demonstrations that took place while we were there – and signs of protests we took along the way. I might do a post on the unsettled part of travel one of these days. It certainly opens your mind to what is happening in the world that we don’t see on television. It is interesting to note, however, that in many cases 90% of the place is calm and going about business as usual, but the media reports make one believe that the entire town is burning down. I am envious of your travels in Spain. . .

  5. Steve

    The giant baby head was pretty strange, but what caught my eye was the tiny, tiny Radisson sign on what I assume was their hotel. Remind me never to book there because I’d never find it with that kind of signage.

    1. Cathy Post author

      Glad you noticed that sign. I don’t know what other signage the hotel might have — didn’t check it out, but did think it was fun regardless.

    1. Cathy Post author

      I read that the artist, Antonio Lopez, modeled the sculpture (and it’s mate with eyes open) on one of his granddaughters.

    1. Cathy Post author

      Thanks, Adela. I guess art is a very personal thing. I thought it was a little creepy, too, but it really captured my attention — and that of others!

  6. Audrey | That Backpacker

    Ooo, the sculpture of the baby’s head is almost frightening! Madrid is one European city that I want to get around to visiting – especially for its museums. 🙂 I spent a bit of time in Barcelona, but ran out of time to check out the capital last time I was there.

  7. Turkey's For Life

    İt’s always unnerving when you get caught up in situations like that. İt seems to happen to us quite a bit in Turkey. İ think demonstrations follow us. 😉 So sad what is happening in Spain. From a travel perspective, we’ve always wanted to go to Madrid after friends went and returned raving about the food. Great photos.

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