Tag Archives: Madrid

Museo Sorolla

Tucked in the center of Madrid’s busy and bustling metropolis is the Sorolla Museum. When you think of Madrid, you tend to think of the Prado, Thyssen-Bornemisza, or Reina Sofia. These are the three iconic museums all clustered along a museum avenue that stretches from the post office square down to Atocha Train Station. But if you have a moment of space in Madrid, I cannot recommend enough the tranquility of the beautiful Sorolla Museum.

Joaquín Sorolla is Spain’s great impressionist painter. His colors of terracotta, white, and light blue are seductive. His paintings leave you with a sense of optimism and goodness. His house, which is now the museum, was donated to the state when his widow died. The house remains as it was when Sorolla was alive from his studio, to the dining room, and even the kitchen. Recently, the gardens and water fountain outside were restored as well. They offer a delightful respite from the busy city beyond the wall.

Madrid is the kind of place that needs a museum like this. It is one of those delightful museums that are a little off the beaten path where you can spend a few hours and collect your thoughts away from the cacophony of the Plaza Mayor and Plaza Sant Ana, and the craziness of the Grand Via and the Puerta del Sol. This place offers a breather for tourists and locals alike; a chance to reflect and look back at an age long since gone. I have been several times and each time it feels like I am about to start a yoga session because it is so peaceful and relaxing.

It is easy to get to the museum as well. You can take the Metro to Iglesia (line 1), or if you are adventurous, take the bus. If you are super fit, you can combine it with a walk from the Paseo de la Castellana. For me, I have to admit, I grabbed a cab.

Chocolate con Churros

It wasn’t that I had had enough of Madrid. I had spent my first night doing a tapas route while bumping into a bunch of teachers that I knew. As is the way, I ended up at the Chocolateria San Ginés, a café on Pasadizo de San Ginés in Central Madrid and is close to the Puerta del Sol. This is the stuff that dreams are made of. All of that work in the gym, the yogurt for breakfast, and the carrot smoothies with kale for your midday fare are undone in a matter of moments.

The churros here, essentially just deep fried batter, sort of like a donut but linear in shape, are always served piping hot. You just have to dip them into your own personal mini vat of hot, thick, chocolate. This place is open 24 hours per day so if you have one of those :Chocolate con Churros” cravings, no worries, just pop on over. They are always there for you.

After the various savory tapas that preceded this extravagance, you can safely say that there was no longing for something extra at the end of the evening. Happily I went on my way through Madrid’s ever busy streets late at night while imagining how many miles I would have to run in order to pull back the decadent gains made at San Ginés. Tomorrow I had decided to get out of town and head to Seville. Churros can do that for you.

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