Madrid is the capital city of Spain. Madrid lies almost exactly at the geographical heart of the Iberian Peninsula. It is situated on an undulating plateau of sand and clay known as the Meseta (derived from the Spanish word mesa, “table”) at an elevation of some 2,120 feet (646 metres) above sea level, making it one of the highest capitals in Europe. It is a city of elegant boulevards and expansive, manicured parks such as the Buen Retiro.
It’s renowned for its rich repositories of European art, including the Prado Museum’s works by Goya, Velázquez and other Spanish masters. The heart of old Hapsburg Madrid is the portico-lined Plaza Mayor, and nearby is the baroque Royal Palace and Armory, displaying historic weaponry.Other places that make Madrid famous include Prado Museum, Calamari Sandwiches, the oldest restaurant in the world, and the biggest Zara in the world. It is an exciting and dynamic metropolis with plenty of things to do and lots of places to enjoy.
Data and facts
- Madrid is the capital and largest city of Spain. It is located on the Manzanares River in the center of Spain, it is bordered by the autonomous communities of Castile and Leon and Castile-La Mancha.
- In 2014, Madrid has an estimated population of 3.3 million, which makes it the third largest city in the European Union behind London and Berlin. Madrid has an estimated population of 3.3 million, but the population of the Madrid metropolitan area is estimated to be about 6.5 million. This is the third-largest metropolitan area in the European Union behind London and Paris.
- Madrid has 40 surrounding municipalities that create the Madrid metropolitan area with a total area of 5,335.97 square kilometers (2,060.23 square miles). There are two zones of urbanization: an inner ring and outer ring. The largest suburbs are in the South along the roads out of Madrid. The city has a population density of 5,400 people per square kilometer, or 14,000 per square mile.
- Madrid is one of the 4 richest cities in Europe. With an estimated GDP of 133 billion euros, Madrid is doing well economically. Sectors like government and technology are the most profitable for this local economy, and service jobs are the most prominent in Madrid.
- Madrid’s metro system is one of the largest in Europe. Public transportation in Madrid is known for being one of the largest and most efficient metropolitan networks.
- Madrid is one of the most popular study abroad destinations. Students from all over the world come to study in Madrid.
- Madrid was once ruled by a dictatorship. From 1936, to 1975, Francisco Franco, general and politician, ruled Spain as a dictator. He came into power during the civil war when he became the dominant rebel military leader.
- Madrid hosts an annual Pride festival. Madrid Pride is the name of the event, the purpose to celebrate the LGBT pride of Madrileños as well as foreigners who come to join the festival. Every year, the gay district of Madrid, Chueca, is covered in flags and filled with lively people and activities.
Madrid, the capital of Spain, is divided into 21 districts, which are further subdivided into 131 administrative wards. Additional neighborhoods exist outside the boundaries of administrative borders. Each district is governed by a body named Junta Municipal de Distrito. Residents of Madrid are typically called Madrileños.
As the capital and largest city, Madrid is the economic hub of Spain. A modern service economy, and home to over half a million companies, it boasts one of the greatest labor markets in Europe, leading the country in growth rates and direct foreign investment. Madrid City is the largest economic hub in Spain with an estimated GDP of € 133 billion, 12% of the national GDP, representing nearly € 41,810 per capita. The greater Madrid area generates 19% of the overall Spanish GDP.
With an impressive per capita income of 45% above the EU average, Madrid is a rich, prosperous city. In recent years, growth rates have been higher than every other major Spanish city. Instituto L.R. Klein-Centro Stone’s forecast for Madrid city estimates continued growth of 2.8% in 2018 and 2.7% for 2019. Both the construction (3.5%) and services (2.8%) sectors are expected to be major contributors to this growth.
The most developed part of Spain's infrastructure is the train system, which is one of the best in Western Europe. The National Network of Spanish Railroads (Renfe) operates the best part of Spain's 15,430 kilometers (9,588 miles, 1999) of railroads which originate from Madrid as the center point. Several lines were eliminated in the 1980s after the company experienced losses. However, in 1990 an ambitious long-term investment program was initiated with the goal of introducing super-speed trains on several lines. Similar to the TGV in France, Spain's AVE started high-speed train operations between Madrid and Seville. As a result, a trip that would otherwise last approximately 5 hours by car could be completed in almost 2 hours. A similar high-speed line linking Madrid and Barcelona is presently under construction and is expected to be completed by 2003. At the regional level, the Cercanias is a rail system that links smaller communities (or suburban areas) to the closest major city, being most fully operative in major urban centers such as Madrid, Barcelona, Bilbao, and Seville. For example, Madrid Cercanias links the southern part of Madrid (Getafe, which is about 20 kilometers south of Madrid) with the north (Tres Cantos, approximately 30 kilometers north), with trains running approximately every 10-15 minutes and generally always on schedule.
Madrid is the 8th city in Europe, out of 67, that best supports digital entrepreneurship (Digital City Index), ahead of cities like Vienna, Milan, Copenhagen, Stockholm, Helsinki or Munich. Digital entrepreneurship can only thrive through leadership and innovation, and according to the Global Cities 2017 ranking, Madrid excels in those skills as the No. 1 city in Spain, 4th in Europe and 13th worldwide. This position has been achieved thanks to its digital, institutional, economic and physical connections with its social and economic environment.
Social Wellness and Human Resources
The Spanish education system is made up of primary, second, third-level and further education (University). State-funded education is available at all levels, unless you choose to send your child to a private institution. A comprehensive private schools network (escuelas privadas) supports the Spain's state-funded school system (escuela pública). It includes many foreign and international schools. Around one third of Spanish children attend private schools, most of which are co-educational day schools. State education is under the Ministry of Education and Science responsibility (Ministerio de Educación y Ciencia), although authority can be delegated to regional governments.
Healthcare centres are manned by the Primary Healthcare Team, which mainly consists of family and paediatric doctor/s, nursing staff and administrative staff. There may also be other support staff, such as social workers, midwives and physiotherapists. You should visit your closest healthcare centre for any health-related problem or query. As a general rule, they are open Monday to Friday from 08:00 until 21:00. Specialist healthcare centres (Centro de Especialidades) are places where you can arrange appointments with specialist physicians, including gynaecologists, trauma surgeons, cardiologists, ophthalmologists, etc. Your specialist healthcare centre will depend on where you live. Please visit your local healthcare centre (Centro de Salud) for further information.
Madrid, the capital of Spain, is a popular European tourist destination, attracting about 6 million visitors a year. Although the tourist sector is so important for Madrid’s economy (representing 10%of total employment), and it is growing very rapidly, relatively little attention has been devoted to tourism until recently, either by researchers or policy makers. Therefore, the scarcity of empirical studies devoted to tourism of Madrid is not very surprising
madrileño, -ña; matritense