"Palacios Reales- a lot of history" Royal Palace Tip by traceyspacey

Royal Palace, Madrid: 127 reviews and 235 photos

It is the official residence of the King of Spain, but it is rarely used. Only on special occasions. It has 2800-3000 rooms (depending upon where you read about it). The origins of the palace go back to the 9th century, when the Islamic Kingdom of Toledo build a fort here. It was later used by the Kings of Castille. It was on this site that the old Alcazhar (Royal Palace) was built in the 16th Century.

It was destroyed by a fire on Christmas Eve in 1734. King Philip V wanted it to be rebuild without any wood so that it could not be burned down again. It is a late Baroque palace built almost entirely of granite and colmenor stone. King Charles III took up residence in 1764 after taking 17 years to be rebuilt.

Only a selection of rooms are available to the public (around 50 rooms). You can see paintings by Goya and Velazquez. One of the highlights here is the Real Armeria (Royal Armoury), it has a collection of ceremonial armour. Suits of armour worn by El Cid and his horse. Another highlight is the Real Farmacia (Royal Pharmacy), this is one of the oldest pharmacies in Europe.

When official receptions/ceremonies are on, the palace is closed. So check before you go.

Every first Wednesday of the month the Royal Guard changes in the courtyard at noon. Ticket prices are up to 11 euros (which covers everything). It is open for free on a Wednesday to EU citizens ( I believe).

I didn't go inside on my visit this time as I have been before.

Address: Palacio Real, Calle Bailen 2
Directions: Nearest metro Opera. It is signposted.
Phone: 91 454 88 00
Website: http://www.patrimonionacional.es/real-sitio/palacios/6039

Review Helpfulness: 3.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Aug 13, 2008
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traceyspacey

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