I’ve already written much about our second day in Madrid here, we started the day off with a fantastic walking tour and learned the history of the city and the Spanish people without even realizing we were learning. Maybe the high school history teachers should take a lesson or two huh? Just saying.
So after our three-hour tour, we tipped our awesome guide, Catia, and were off to re-gain our strength at Starbucks! We chose to spend the afternoon on Gran Via shopping!! Actually my time was spent browsing and being sure not to buy anything, while Laura tried on clothes left and right, but I have become accustomed to only window-shopping, so I didn’t mind.
Our Madrid afternoons were spent napping in the hostel, but we didn’t really feel bad about that because in the middle of the August heat, all of the Spaniards were also enjoying their siesta time.
That evening we decided to sign up for the tapas tour which was also graciously organized by our hostel. During my short 10-day jaunt through Spain (and my previous 5-day trip to Barcelona) I discovered that I have a very difficult time grasping the concept of tapas. I love the idea and am intrigued by the traditional choices offered up but I had a tough time knowing what are the best dishes and which dishes to order where. I was very grateful for our expert tapas-guide, whose name I can’t remember but he definitely resembled Bruno Mars. He took us through the main bar neighborhood of Madrid and ordered each bars specialties for us to test, along with some traditional Spanish drinks. We actually ended up back at some of the bars we stopped in the night before and were introduced to some great fellow travelers from our hostels and some nearby. We visited a total of three bars and each one was completely different, I definitely approve and recommend doing a tour if you are in Madrid.
Being a college-age student and a sorority girl nonetheless, the concept of Pub Crawls is a very welcome one but I surprised myself when I realized I’ve never actually been on one. The one offered by the same company and same tour guide (plus one) didn’t tempt me much, but the fellow travelers did and we paid the €10 to join in. The deal was for three traditional, popular Madrid bars and a nightclub with free shots at each. We made it to the three bars and enjoyed shots of free peach schnapps, but free is free and we were in good company. We made life-long friends (AKA friends for that night that talked about being life-long friends) with Monty and his sister from New Orleans and four Irish girls on a weekend jaunt through Madrid, but regardless of the fact that we don’t even remember all of their names, they made our night and sometimes that’s all you need.