My name is Scott and I like to travel. There I said it, wow that does feel better. There is probably a program for my affliction somewhere. I am what I would consider a Normal Guy. I am a native Arizonan, sometimes we are called “Zonies”. I am in my mid 40′s and enjoy a great life. I am self employed and have a wonderful daughter and Partner. Although I would say my life is a fairly normal one, I am also quite lucky in that I have the ability to travel and enjoy the world, I enjoy learning about other cultures and experiencing the world around us.
I want to be right upfront about the type of travel I enjoy and the type I don’t. You will probably not ever read a story of about me backpacking my way through the serengeti during the height of summer, nor will you probably read any stories of me sleeping in the presidential suite of the Ritz Carlton in Paris. I am not a budget traveler, nor am I an uber luxury traveler, I fall somewhere in the middle, where most people fall I believe.
I started this blog for the sole purpose of sharing my stories, my views and my excitement for traveling around this world with my friends, family. However it doesn’t stop there for me, I also wanted to make friends with others around the world, those who travel and those who dream of travel. Blogs and Websites evolve over time, mine will no doubt expand over time as well please come back and see what has taken place. However if you have come to my blog to schedule a flight or a hotel, this is not the place.
I am always amused by strange or unknown facts about places I visit. Some of them are humorous and some just plain disgusting and others, just more information to fill our heads with. I decided I would share some strange but true facts about Madrid, Spain. I will be visiting Madrid in the coming days and am looking forward to it’s art, architecture, food and it’s culture that they have to share with the World. I am also in awe of it’s history and hidden stories.
Believe it or Not!
Madrid has been the capital of Spain since the 17th Century.
The name Madrid comes from the arabic “Magerit” which means Place of many Streams.
The population of Madrid was 950,000 in 1900, now it is over 3 million.
Madrid is the highest capital city in Europe
Madrid has three art galleries in close proximity called the Golden Triangle, they consist of the Prado, which has four thousand works of art including Botticelli, El Greco, Velazquez and Goya. The Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza features works by Renoir and Van Eyck. The Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia completes the triangle, this gallery houses twentieth century Spanish art including Guernica by Picasso.
Madrid enjoys more cloudless days than almost any other city in Europe.
Madrid is world famous for it’s old cafe’s, cosy tapas bars and restaurants that brim with life.
Madrid’s official symbol of the bear on it’s hind legs eating berries from the madrono tree is a metaphor for Madrid’s growth and represents possession and ownership of wood which is necessary for constructing buildings.
Puerta De Europa
Madrilenos are often called “Gatos” (Cats) not because of their late sleeping habits similar to cats, but because of the historical legend where during the Arabic Invasion, an adept soldier climbed the outer walls with agility of a cat; after which, his family assumed the name of Gato.
Madrid has an extensive Flea Market, called the El Rastro which is open on Sundays for a great first-time experience with its array of odd objects right from junk to rare findings and paintings.
Madrid celebrates a Carnavale full of fun and frolic, weeks before Lent. Highlights of the Carnavale is the Shrove Tuesday and Ash Wednesday when men in mourning bury a cardboard effigy of a sardine in a mock coffin by the riverside in remembrance of a tragic event that took place in the 18th century.
Two of the most distinctive buildings in Madrid are known as the Puerta de Europa. These two identical office buildings built in the mid 1990s lean towards each other at a fifteen degree angle and make up one of the most unique skylines in the world.
According to the Guinness Book or World Records, Madrid holds the worlds oldest restaurant. In 1725 the restaurant Botin opened to serve traditional cuisine in Madrid, It’s specialties are delicious suckling pig and lamb roasted in an old Castilian way, in a wood fired oven dating back to 1725.