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Places (POIs) visited during this tour

Place #1
Distance: 0.51mi , Attraction : Historic Gate
Map Pin
Retiro, 28001 Madrid, Spain
POI 1 Tour Image
Puerto de Alcala
Oh great, you found our starting point. That circle with all of the traffic driving around it is called Independence Square, even though it is a circle. It dates back to the reign of King Carlos III waaay back in 1778. Are you ready to move on? No? Oh, you want me to tell you about that enormous, beautiful, triumphal arch in the MIDDLE of Independence Square? I thought so. Feel free to watch for traffic and then run over and take a closer look while I tell you about it. That is the Gate of Alcala. Between 1625 and 1868, Madrid was surrounded by the Walls of Philip IV and this door was the main entrance. King Charles III didn’t really like the previous gate that was there when he arrived in Madrid in 1759, so he commissioned Italian Architect Francesco Sabatini to build this one. I guess when you are a king you get whatever you want. The Gate of Alcala is 19.5 meters long and has a different design on each side. The side facing the city center has flags, weapons and lions. The opposite side has a coat of arms and a child. At the top of the gate are four children that stand for fortitude, justice, temperance and prudence. In the early days of the gate, cars didn’t exist and Alcala was used for livestock. Yup, sheep wandering through those doors was just a regular old thing. You won’t see any sheep walking through the gate these days though, EXCEPT during the Trashumancia Festival. For one day only, sheep are paraded through the gate of Alcala and down the streets of Madrid as a celebration of Spanish Heritage. I think I’d prefer watching the sheep over watching the cars… but that’s just me. NOW are you ready to move on? Retiro Park is waiting for us! All you have to do is turn around and go through those gates. No, not the Gate of Alcala! The gates that are located southeast of the plaza. Just follow your navigation, enter the gates, and meet me right in front of the rectangular fountain. You will see stairs on either side.

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Place #2
Distance: 2.07mi , Attraction : Park
Map Pin
Calle Méjico, 2, 28009 Madrid, Spain
POI 2 Tour Image
Retiro Park
Welcome to Retiro Park! This is one of the largest parks in Madrid. It actually belonged to the Spanish Monarchy until the late 19th century when they finally decided to share it with the public. Thanks, Spanish Monarchy! If you love trees, this is a great place to be because these 350 acres are home to more than 15,000 of them. You can either trust me on that or count them yourself. Totally up to you. Why don’t we take a stroll through the park so I can point out some of its most popular features. Our first stop will be the fountain of the Galapagos and it is straight ahead. Pick a set of stairs and then meet me at the front of the fountain.

Tour itinerary stops | Additional places you'll see on this self-guided tour

Map Pin Place 1 Puerto de Alcala
Map Pin Place 2 Retiro Park
Map Pin Place 3 The Fountain of the Galapagos
Map Pin Place 4 Monument to Alfonso XII
Map Pin Place 5 The Artichoke Fountain
Map Pin Place 6 Directions
Map Pin Place 7 The Glass Palace
Map Pin Place 8 Directions
Map Pin Place 9 Directions
Map Pin Place 10 Directions
Map Pin Place 11 The Gardens of Cecilio Rodriguez

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