Wednesday 12 June 2024

From Sol to Santa Ana - Madrid

The aim on that specific day was to walk from Plazal del Sol to Plaza de Santa Ana but we got side-tracked on Calle de Alcala so the walk ended up being much much longer - something that was not unusual during our 10-day stay in Madrid.

As I mentioned in a previous post so many of our explorations started from Plaza del Sol and that day was not different. 

Calle de Alcala is one of the boulevards leading off the square, and this was part of our chosen route that day

like the rest of downtown Madrid, full of gorgeous buildings

One of our planned stops for that day was the Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando, a gallery that has for centuries played a pivotal trole in the artistic life of the city. As the royal fine arts academy, it has nurtuted local talent and played a critical role in the royal obssession of bringing great international artists of the day into the city.  Picasso and Dali studied at this academy, but found it far too stuffy for their liking.  It has three floors of stunning works of art.

There was also a temporary exhibition of Goya and we saw that as well as the works exhibited in the rest of the building.

We came out of the Academia and we could see lots of people further down Calle de Alcala

The police were there, so it must have been a demonstration?

Lots of people, green being the dominant colour

So, I went to talk to the people who were assembled here. They were teachers, students and pupils who were picketing the Ministry of Education because the government is transfering public money into the private sector.  I said how the British government is doing the same with the NHS, funding private care with our money, money that should be invested in the NHS. 

Later that day they were going to hold  a demonstration in the city.

I asked this teacher if I could photograph her T-shirt. We saw these t-shirts throughout the city for the rest of that day. While we were having our evening meal a group of teachers were sitting at the next table. I asked them how the demonstration went, and they said it was huge, much bigger than they had expected.

We wished the teachers good luck, and moved on.

Edificio Metropolis, built in 1905, for some, Madrid's most beautiful building. 

The winged victory statue  atop its dome was added in 1975.

Instituto Cervantes

This building is huge - at least four times the length of what we see in the photograph

here's one end of it.

We got to Placa de la Cibeles, a fountain in the middle, and Centrocentro dominating. Centrocentro is a diverse  cultural space, housed in the grand Palacio de Communicaciones. It has cutting-edge exhibitions covering 5000 sq metres over four floors as well as quiet reading rooms and some stunning architecture, especially in the soaring Antiguo Patio de Operaciones on the 2n 2nd floor.

We started walking up the other end of Calle de Alcala - past a small park

and turned left into a narrow street, Calle de Ventura de la Vega,  which was full of Latin American restaurants

some had queues of people waiting for a table

and all seemed to be busy

We turned right heading towards

Plaza de Santa Ana, a beautiful square that seems to be emblematic of this city which is intent on living a good life

surrounded by tall buildings

it is full of cafes and restaurants, buzzing with life.

We sat here and had a tasty lunch

We stopped by the statue of Federico Garcia Lorca, one of Spain's great poets and one who was so brutally murdered by the fascists during the civil war

We took one of the streets off the square

and found ourselves in another square, Plaza del Angel, which is also full of restaurants and cafes buzzing with life

Then walked back

 to our hotel to find decked with flags and carnations in celebration of San Isidro.

No comments:

Post a Comment