Los mejores mercados en Madrid

Mercado de San Antón

Siempre me pregunto dónde se puede comer algo típico de Madrid sin pagar demasiado dinero, pero ahora lo sé: ¡en los mercados!

En Madrid hay muchos mercados donde se puede encontrar comida española, pero mi preferido es el Mercado de San Antón.

Este mercado está muy cerca de Inhispania, así que si no tenéis mucha pausa entra las clases de la mañana y las de la tarde, podría ser un buen compromiso.

El Mercado de San Antón tiene tres plantas; la primera está dedicada a la venta de producto perecedero, mientras en la segunda hay más productos que se pueden llevar.

Cuidado con el horario de cierre: la primera planta cierra a las 22:00 horas, mientras que la segunda a medianoche.

De todos modos, la mejor planta para mí es la tercera, donde se encuentra una terraza llamada “La cocina”.

Claro que en la terraza los precios van a ser más caros respecto a las plantas de abajo, pero una vez arriba, merece la pena tomarse una cerveza y mirar la puesta de sol. Si queréis ver qué puestos se pueden encontrar en este mercado, podéis buscarlas aquí: https://www.mercadosananton.com/puestos/

Mercado de San Miguel

Otro mercado donde se pueden comer los platos típicos españoles es el Mercado de San Miguel, muy cerca de la Plaza Mayor. La estructura de este mercado es muy destacable. Este edificio histórico es uno de los principales mercados gastronómicos del mundo, ya que permite a sus visitantes hacer un recorrido por la esencia y los sabores de cada uno de los rincones de España.

En cuanto a los horarios, desde el domingo hasta el jueves es de 10:00a 24:00 horas; mientras el viernes y el sábado el mercado cierra a la 01:00.

Si queréis ver qué puestos se pueden encontrar en este mercado, podéis buscarlas aquí: https://mercadodesanmiguel.es/

Mercado de San Ildefonso

Hay también un tercer mercado en Madrid muy famoso, cerca de la Calle Fuencarral, llamado “Mercado de San Ildefonso”.

Su oferta se basa principalmente en los productos manufacturados y algunos en estado puro, pero siempre listos para tomar en el establecimiento o mientras se sigue el rumbo por la calle principal. Todo ello con el objetivo de ser un break en la jornada de compras, un punto de encuentro en horario after work, una alternativa al menú del día o una parada estratégica para vecinos, turistas y asiduos entre MalasañaChueca y Tribunal. El Mercado de San Ildefonso distribuye sus espacios en tres plantas diferenciadas donde encontramos una amplia variedad de disposiciones y posibilidades.

Complementando los puestos gastronómicos con tres barras, una por cada planta, el mercado cuenta también con dos terrazas, ambas semicubiertas y perfectas para disfrutar de las instalaciones al aire libre, en la mejor de las compañías y con el mejor ambiente de Madrid.

Desde el lunes hasta el jueves, abre a las 13:00 y cierra a la 01:00 horas, el viernes y el sábado abre desde las 12:00 hasta la 01:00, mientras que el domingo abre desde las 12:00 hasta las 00:00.

Si queréis ver que tiendas se pueden encontrar en este mercado, podéis buscarlas aquí:  https://www.mercadodesanildefonso.com/

Culture shock and how to deal with it

What is culture shock?

Travelling is all about new experiences, and discovering the culture of a different country is part of the adventure. However, when you visit a new country it can be difficult to adjust to these cultural differences, whether you´re a few hours from home, or on the other side of the world! Read on to learn about some of the ways you might experience culture shock and how you can overcome it in order to enjoy your stay in Spain!

Food

This is one of the most common forms of culture shock and something that most people experience. Even if you´re keen to try new foods, you will probably miss some things from home and be surprised by what you can´t find in the supermarket. In cities, you will be able to find many ingredients in international food stores, but if you are headed for a more rural location it might be wise to pack anything that you can´t live without in your suitcase.

Spanish food
Language

This might seem obvious, but finding your feet can be challenging if you´re not already proficient in the language when you arrive in a foreign country. Again, in a big city like Madrid you are sure to find someone who speaks your language, but you may still feel isolated for the first few weeks. The only way to really overcome this barrier is to immerse yourself in the language, through classes or language exchanges, but it could be helpful to try and find a network of people who speak your language while you settle in.

Spanish language
Pace of life

This is something which foreigners in Spain tend to struggle with, and it can take a long time to adapt to a new schedule. In Spain, mealtimes tend to be later and longer, which can result in very long days. You may also notice this “no rush” attitude in the relaxed approach to punctuality and the way people take their time in shops and the like. If you come from a fast-paced culture where being on time means arriving early, this can be a difficult adjustment to make. Of course, if you are eating at home, you can choose your mealtimes, but there´s really no way round it if you go to a restaurant, as you are restricted by their hours of service.

Pace of life
Greetings and interactions

The way people greet each other varies greatly between cultures; what is considered normal in one country can be interpreted as an insult in another! In Spain, it is common to greet someone you know with a kiss on each cheek, which might seem very intimate if you are used to a handshake. This is true of interactions in general in Spain – people tend to stand close and it is entirely normal to touch the person you are talking to, on the arm for example. At first this might make you feel uncomfortable, but with time you should get used to this way of communicating.

Greetings in Spanish

Hopefully these tips have given you an idea of the challenges you might face when you arrive in a new country, and how you can deal with them, but the most important thing to remember is that it´s completely normal to feel a little lost at first, this doesn´t mean you won´t soon feel at home!

Top 5: Ilaria

Hi, I’m Ilaria and I spent 2 months here in Madrid, doing an internship with Inhispania!

During my stay, I was always thinking about how to enjoy my period here in Madrid, so now I’m going to give you some tips!

1. Flamenco

First of all, I think it could be a great idea to see a Flamenco show.

This dance is a professionalised art-form based on the various folkloric music traditions of southern Spain in the autonomous community of Andalusia. In a wider sense, the term refers to a variety of Spanish musical styles developed as early as the 19th century and now has become popular all over the world.

I saw a Flamenco show in the Cardamomo theatre, it was an amazing experience because dancers are very professional and it seems like the music is coursing through their veins. If I have to be truthful, these shows are a little bit expensive but they are worth the price.

Flamenco show

2. Estadio Santiago Bernabéu

As you may know, Madrid has many football teams, but the most important are Real Madrid and Atlético Madrid.

The Santiago Bernabéu is a football stadium in Madrid, and it has been the home stadium of Real Madrid since its completion in 1947.

The Santiago Bernabéu is one of the world’s most famous football venues and has hosted lots of finals.

So, if you are going to spend a week end here in Madrid, why not watch a Spanish football game?

Of course it’s better to check if the tickets are available in advance, so you don´t get a nasty surprise!

Santiago Bernabeu Stadium

3. Parque del Retiro

Madrid is full of beautiful places, but the one I like most is the Retiro Park. I like going there to relax, read a book or have a picnic. The Retiro Park is a place where you can escape from all the traffic and overcrowded streets, where you can just lay down in the grass and open your mind to imagination.

This park is open every day, from April to September 06.00-00.00 h and from October to March 06.00-22.00 h.

So, if you need a shelter where to chill out, the Retiro Park could be a great place!

Retiro Park

4. La Casa de mi Vecina

If you miss home and need something to cheer you up, I think that “La casa de mi vecina” it’s the perfect place for you! This pastry offers the best home-made cakes in Madrid, and it’s also near the school! What more could you want? J

It is open every day from 10 to 22, and it’s located near the Tribunal metro station.

It’s a tiny place, but offers cupcakes, biscuits, slice of cakes and for the greediest, also a whole cake.

La Casa de mi vecina

5. Hotel Riu

Since June, here in Madrid we have another super hotel with a wide rooftop where to take a beer or cocktail with a friend, it is called the Hotel RIU.

What makes this hotel special is the glass bridge, where it seems to fly.

The position is perfect too, because you can watch the sunset on Gran Vía street.

Before 6 pm you have to pay only 5€ to go up, while if you want to go up later you have to pay 10€, but the good thing is that for both tickets (5 or 10€) you will receive a voucher of 5€ that you can use for a drink on the top.

So, at the end, is not so expensive and the view is literally stunning.

I really recommend this rooftop, because the price for the drinks is worth the view and you can mostly find a table where to enjoy your time!

Hotel Riu

But, if I seriously have to choose the best place here, in Madrid, of course should be this school, because it gave me so much and I will never forget all the people I met!

All the people, who work here, are amaizing!

It was a pleasure meeting them 🙂

Top 5: Katie

¡Hola a todos! My name is Katie and I have been an intern at Inhispania over the summer months. This blog is about the top five places and activities that I have discovered during my time in Madrid would definitely recommend to make the most out of your time in Madrid:

1. Terraza del Círculo de Bellas Artes

Se dice que esta terraza es la mejor en Madrid, ¡y con razón! Mientras el centro acoge muchas actividades culturales y exposiciones, es mejor subir a la séptima planta donde disfrutarás de una vista que quita el aliento: Gran Vía, el horizonte (¡y también la escuela!). Por sólo 4 euros, podrás ver la puesta de sol desde las alturas y beber un cóctel: ¡os recomiendo un mojito! Preparaos para luchar por conseguir la foto más instagrameable fotos instagrameables. Todo el mundo quiere esta toma icónica.

First up, the most popular terrace bar in Madrid, and rightly so! Whilst the centre itself is home to many cultural activities and exhibitions, make your way up to the seventh floor for a breathtaking view of Madrid´s skyline, Gran Vía, and Inhispania! For just 4 euros, you can watch the sunset from the rooftop and enjoy a cocktail: I´d recommend the mojito! For the instagrammers amongst you, you will have to fight your way to get a picture since this the most iconic shot of Madrid.

Il faut absolument visiter la terrasse sur le toit qui a vraiment gagné son titre comme la plus populaire de Madrid. Bien que le centre lui-même contienne plein d’activités culturelles, montez au septième étage du bâtiment pour profiter d’une vue véritablement incroyable de la ´Gran Vía´, de l’horizon (et de l’école!) Pour seulement 4 euros, vous pouvez apprécier le coucher du soleil depuis les hauteurs de la ville et en profiter pour prendre un cocktail au bar : mon préféré ici, c’est sans doute le mojito. Attention ! Pour les vrais instagrameurs, préparez-vous à vous battre pour vos photos de la vue étant donné que c’est la plus iconique et plus photographié de Madrid.

Círculo de Bellas Artes
2. El Tigre Sidra Bar

Escondido, a 30 segundos a pie desde la escuela, hay un pequeño bar de tapas muy chulo que se llama El Tigre. Cobra mucha vida por la noche, lleno de gente charlando en muchos idiomas. El Tigre mola mucho por sus tapas: con cada bebida grande que tomas, te regalan un plato enorme de croquetas, bocadillos, jamón o tortilla española. Por cierto, la escuela te ofrece la oportunidad, de vez en cuando, de incluirlo en sus actividades semanales, así que te aconsejo asistir con tus compañeros de clase. Con bebidas baratas y montones de tapas, ¿hay una manera mejor de practicar tu español?

Hidden just around the corner from the school is a great little tapas bar called El Tigre. It really comes to life at night time, bustling with people speaking a mix of languages all at once. The great thing about ‘El Tigre’ is that for every large drink you buy (6 euros), you get a huge plate of tapas free with it! For example: croquetas, bocadillos, Iberian ham and tortilla.) We often pay a visit to ‘El Tigre’ with our students so I would definitely suggest coming along with your classmates to practice Spanish over a plate of tapas and a tinto de verano.

Caché à deux pas de l’école se trouve un petit bar à ‘tapas’ qui s’appelle El Tigre. Avec une ambiance vraiment vivante la nuit, ce bar cosmopolite est toujours plein de jeunes qui discutent en plusieurs langues. Ce qui y attire les gens, c’est le fait qu’avec une grande boisson achetée il y a un énorme plat de ‘tapas’ offert, par exemple des croquettes, du jambon, de la tortilla espagnole… En plus, l’école vous offre souvent l’opportunité d’y aller comme activité, je vous conseille donc fortement d’y aller avec vos camarades de classe pour parler l’espagnol en dégustant un plat de tapas y en buvant un verre de ‘tinto de verano’.

El Tigre
3. La Campaña, Plaza Mayor

No podía escribir un blog sin mencionar mi rincón favorito para comer – este pequeño bar de tapas está detrás de la Plaza Mayor, muy escondido. La carta no tiene muchas opciones, pero están especializados en todo lo que ofrecen. Hay bocadillos de calamares frescos o bocadillos de tortilla (mi favorito) por sólo 3 euros, o un cucurucho de patatas bravas por 4 euros. Todo es muy barato, y no tendrás ganas de comer hasta horas después, de verdad. Unos consejos; ¡pide la salsa brava y alioli mitad-mitad! ¿Por qué no ir después de vuestras clases? Sólo está a 15 minutos a pie desde la escuela, y está a tiro de piedra desde Sol y el barrio hipster de La Latina.

I couldn´t write a blog without mentioning my favourite food spot –this tiny tapas bar is a hidden gem. Their menu is short but simple: fresh calamari (a must-try in Madrid) or tortilla bocadillos (my favourite) for just 3 euros and a cone of patatas bravas for 4 euros – super cheap, and will fill you up for hours. A small tip: ask for the salsa brava and alioli sauces ´mitad-mitad´ (half and half) for a really delicious bocadillo etc. Why not go after class? It is only a 15 minute walk from the school and a stone’s throw away from Sol and the trendy area of La Latina.

Je ne peux pas écrire un blog sans mentionner mon endroit préféré : un petit bar à tapas caché juste à côté de la Plaza Mayor. Avec une petite carte, parmi leurs spécialités : des sandwiches au calamar frais/ de tortilla (mon préféré!) pour seulement 3 euros et un cornet des pommes de terre frites (4 euros). Vraiment bon marché, et vous n’aurez pas faim pendant toute la journée! Un petit conseil : demandez les sauces ‘salsa brava’ et ‘alioli’ comme ´mitad y mitad’ (moitié-moitié) sur le panini. Pourquoi ne pas y aller après la classe? C’est juste à 15 minutes à pied de l’école et à deux pas de la Puerta del Sol et de La Latina.

Bocadillo de calamares
4. El Parque del Retiro

El Parque del Retiro está situado muy cerca de la escuela. Yo recomendaría que fueseis aquí para broncearte el fin de semana, leer un libro (en español por supuesto…) o dar un paseo por el Palacio de Cristal. Para los que quieran hacerse amigos, deberían descargar la App gratis que se llama Meetup. Te permite participar en actividades gratis en grupo por la cuidad, y la mayoría tienen lugar en El Retiro, por ejemplo jogging, yoga, o hasta clases de otros idiomas.

‘Parque El Retiro’ is a huge park located right by the school, I have been here so many times to sunbathe, read a book, or visit ‘El Palacio de Cristal’ (The Crystal Palace, made entirely of glass). Or if you are feeling sociable, you should check out the free app ‘Meetup’ which lets you take part in free group activities around the city, many of which take part in El Retiro, such as jogging, yoga, or even language conversation classes!

Le parc ´El Retiro’ est juste à côté de l’école, alors je vous conseille d’y aller le weekend pour y prendre un bain de soleil, lire un roman (en espagnol bien sûr) ou visiter ‘El Palacio de Cristal’ (entièrement construit en verre). Si vous cherchez à vous faire des amis, je vous recommande l’appli gratuite qui s’appelle Meetup pour participer à des activités gratuites en groupe, dont la majorité se passent au parc du Retiro, par exemple des groupes de jogging, de yoga ou même des cours de langues !

Palacio de Cristal
5. Intercambio de Idiomas en Larios Café

¡Da el salto del aula a la vida real en un intercambio de idiomas! Aquí en Larios Café tienes la oportunidad de charlar con madrileños en un bar muy cerca de la escuela. Yo recomiendo éste, porque es completamente gratis, siempre cobra mucha vida a partir de las 21:00. Los encuentros tienen lugar los miércoles y los domingos. Se hablan muchos idiomas, si quieres practicar otros al mismo tiempo. Vamos con la escuela cada miércoles por la noche, así que ¡ven con tus amigos!

Put that Spanish into practise at a Language Exchange! Have the chance to practice your conversation with local madrileños (people from Madrid) in a bar right near the school. I would recommend the event at Larios Café; entry is free, there are always lots of people from around 9pm, and it takes place on Sundays and Wednesdays for the keen beans! People here come to practice all different languages, so get involved! The school joins in every Wednesday evening, so go with your classmates!

Mettez votre espagnol en pratique en allant à un échange de langues ! Vous pourrez en profiter pour pratiquer votre espagnol avec des locaux de Madrid (les Madrileños). Je vous conseille d’aller au Larios Café, un bar se situant à 10 minutes à pied de l’école, car c’est gratuit, il y a toujours pleins de gens à partir de 21 heures. L’échange a lieu les dimanches et mercredis, pour ceux qui veuillent pratiquer davantage ! Ici, les gens cherchent à discuter en plein de langues, alors si vous en parlez plus, pourquoi pas les pratiquer toutes ?! Il y a des évènements le weekend, et nous allons avec l’école le mercredi.

Larios Café

Espero haberos echado una mano sobre cómo involucraros en la vida madrileña, y continuar el aprendizaje fuera de clase. Finalmente, os consejo participar en todas las actividades ofertadas por la Inhispania. Madrid es una ciudad maravillosa. ¡Divertíos!

I hope this blog gives you a better idea of how to get involved in the city life, and how to keep learning Spanish outside the classroom. As a final note I would really recommend getting involved with all the activities the school has to offer; Madrid is a huge city, so get exploring!

J’espère vous avoir aidé un peu à savoir comment vous intégrer à Madrid et apprendre l’espagnol après les classes. Au final, je vous recommande fortement de participer à toutes les activités d’Inhispania. Madrid est une énorme ville avec plein de choses à faire, alors profitez-en bien!

Top 5: Adam

¡Hola! After living in Madrid for a few months I have quite a lot of favourite places, but below you can find my top 5. I hope it’s helpful and you try some of them out whilst you’re in Madrid.

1. Parque del Retiro

Sorry to be basic but this is by far my favourite place in Madrid. You can go rowing, visit the book fair (in June), sunbathe and get a glass of sangria at the cafeteria. Rowing there is great value for money and costs around 7€ for 45 minutes. I cannot recommend it enough and it is particularly amazing to watch the sun set there. It’s really easy to get there from the centre too and you can even walk if you’re feeling brave enough.

Retiro Park
2. Palacio Real

This is another classic. The architecture and interior design of this palace is really something else. I went 3 times whilst staying in Madrid and have got to say it is one of my favourite places. You can access most of the palace, its gardens and take pictures in front of amazing views. Each room has its own theme and it really is a must-see if you want to try out being a Royal for the day. There is a discount for students too if you book it online in advance too at www.patrimonionacional.es/ and this will make sure that you avoid the extremely long queues for visitors who haven’t booked tickets in advance.

Royal Palace
3. LLBar, Chueca

I would highly recommend this little drag bar. Coming from Manchester which has the biggest gay night scene in Europe, I really didn’t expect to find much to compare it with here in Madrid. However, I was wrong. Chueca is a part of the city which really embraces LGBT culture. This bar has drag queen shows most nights and really is so fun and a great way to practice your Spanish talking in the queue or listening to the extremely talented Drag Queens singing and dancing. The entry is free and the copas (doubles) are good value for money.

Chueca
4. Purmina Indian Restaurant

This is by far my favourite place to eat in Madrid. Although not particularly Spanish, it serves authentic Indian food and is run by local Bangladeshi people who are extremely friendly. You can personalize each dish to have it as spicy as you want and the interior design really is to die for. It is a bit further out from the city centre but it is worth the effort, trust me! It is a bit pricey but the mains are extremely big so you could always share a main with a friend or just have a whole dish to yourself! We are all kind of holiday after all ;).

Indian restaurant
5. Ojalá, Malasaña

My favourite café to have brunch at on a Sunday morning is definitely Ojala. It is really quirky inside (as you can see in the photo) and the food is delicious, particularly the breakfast menu. All the brews come in tiny little cute tea cups and the avocado on toast is gorgeous. Go whilst you can! It is in the very trendy area of Malasaña, which is full of cool restaurants and cafes so you can go and do a bit of retail therapy in nearby vintage clothes shops after a delicious breakfast.

Ojalá, Malasaña