Madrid, capital of Spain, between three and five million inhabitants - depending from where you start to count - and the same amount of tourists (well, spread over the year; and, another question, are Erasmus students also considered as tourists...?!).
A city of everything: culture, holiday, studies, sports, traffic, parks, heat, colds, noise and silence - but it doesn't have a beach. It is a city of opposites that don't appear anymore as opposites once you have lived here for a while.
The Puerta del Sol.
Though the "Gate to the Sun" doesn't exist anymore it's the absolute centre of the city.
Here is the place where everybody meets,
where all the national streets have their source,
the place where everbody looks to on New Year's Eve at midnight,
and Uncle Joseph (Tío Pepe) is the patron.
The fountain by night.
And the try to replace the "í" of Tío Pepe by the fountain.
In front "El Oso y el Madroño"
(the bear and the wild strawberry tree), THE meeting point in Madrid,
in the back the Casa de Correos, which today is the house of the regional government,
on the left a rider statue with Carlos III on it.
Tomasito y el oso.
The Palacio Real on the left, the photo without flash and María-José, Tomasito and Jan in the middle.
Lara, me and Francois in front of the Rio
Manzanares and the Palacio Real.
Photo taken during the Fiesta de San Isidro (but well, you can't see anyhing of that).
The "Templo de Debod" in the "Parque
del Oeste" / "La Rosaleda".
An Egyptian temple (though it doesn't look like one) gifted to Spain.
The photo was taken by myself on an early Sunday evening at sunset.
Plaza de España -
with Don Quijote, General Franco's skyscrapers and Cervantes.
Actually a very strange mixture.
El Palacio de Cristal in the Retiro.
Swans and ducks are swimming in the lake in front.
The Plaza de Toros in Ventas.
Though I don't like bull fighting, I like the architecture of the Plaza de Toros.
The entrance of the Plaza de Toros.
The Torres Kio in the North of Madrid at
the Plaza Castilla.
And the top of a fountain.
Again the towers, also called Torres de España.
It's difficult to get them centric onto a photo.
The tower in the tower. Reflection games.
Navidad (Christmas) in Madrid.
The nice Christmas illumination of Spain's most famous warehouse (and expensive) "El Corte Inglés".
Here its branch in Argüelles - where I always buy my fresh milk.
The head in the middle at the bottom of the pic is of course me.
More images of Madrid on page two!