Spanish culture is known for being fervent and passionate, and that rings especially true when it comes to cheering on the home team.
Madrileños love getting together to watch sports. Whether it be on the small screen at their favorite neighborhood bar or in person among thousands of fans, you can always count on the locals to cheer with all their heart. If you’re a sports fan, you’ll almost certainly want to be part of this energetic experience. However, if you really want to take things to the next level, why not go behind the scenes for an inside look at some of Madrid’s favorite teams and sports? This guide to the top stadiums in Madrid will help you narrow down where to go in order to get the ultimate experience.
1. Santiago Bernabéu Stadium (Real Madrid)
Get up close and personal with what might just be the most legendary team in all of Spain when you visit Santiago Bernabéu Stadium. Home to the iconic Real Madrid soccer team, it also offers one of the must-do tours of stadiums in Madrid. In fact, with tours running 363 days a year, it’s incredibly easy to fit a visit into your schedule! Tickets run at €25 each for adults, and with the sheer amount of sensations you’ll experience, they’re worth every cent.
Tour Bernabéu starts by giving you a jaw-dropping bird’s eye view over the playing field from above. From there, you’ll step into the heart of the stadium. As you make your way through, you’ll visit several rooms highlighting the team’s rich history and various triumphs throughout the decades. Along the way, you’ll feel the passion and excitement of the game as you make your way through the locker room, press room, tunnel and bench area, and finally out onto the field! You’ll even have a chance to “meet” your favorite player and get a novelty photo taken with them.
Address: Avenida Concha Espina, 1
2. Wanda Metropolitano (Atlético de Madrid)
While not as well-known outside of Spain as crosstown rivals Real Madrid, the Atlético de Madrid soccer club deserves a mention here as well. For more than 50 years, Atlético called Vicente Calderón Stadium home before moving to a more modern facility, the Wanda Metropolitano, in 2017.
The tour of the Wanda Metropolitano gives you an up-close-and-personal look at one of Madrid’s most beloved teams. You’ll step onto the field, into the locker room, feel like a VIP in the President’s Box and more. The entire experience is led by a smart, professional and friendly guide, who will regale your group with plenty of anecdotes about the team along the way!
Address: Avenida de Luis Aragonés, s/n
3. Estadio de Vallecas (Rayo Vallecano)
If you’re looking to truly get off the beaten path and have an experience few other tourists can claim, head to the Estadio de Vallecas. As one of the lesser-known yet equally fascinating stadiums in Madrid, it dates back to the mid-1970s and has been home to the Rayo Vallecano soccer team ever since.
The stadium is much smaller than the Santiago Bernabéu and the Wanda Metropolitano. However, that just gives it a more authentic feel. You’ll be able to sit back and relax among local fans as you enjoy top quality soccer (Rayo Vallecano was recently promoted to Spain’s first division, La Liga). Although tours of the stadium are not currently available, we highly recommend catching a game at this hidden gem during your time in Madrid to complete your local experience.
4. Las Ventas
One of the most culturally important stadiums in Madrid, Las Ventas, opened its doors in 1931 and has been a hotspot for events in the city ever since. Historically, it has been one of Spain’s most important bullrings, but it offers so much more. The stadium hosts concerts (The Beatles, Diana Ross, AC/DC and Coldplay are just a few of the legends who have played shows in the arena), tennis matches, theater performances and more.
A tour of Las Ventas will take you past the breathtaking Neo-Mudéjar exterior and into the heart of one of Madrid’s most historic buildings. While private tours are available, the self-guided audio tour (available in eight languages) makes it easy to experience the stadium at your own pace. You’ll step out on the sand, into the royal box, and gain more context at the small museum inside the arena.
Address: Calle de Alcalá, 237
5. Caja Mágica
Calling all tennis fans! As one of the most modern sports facilities in the world, the Caja Mágica truly lives up to its name (which translates as “the magic box”). The state-of-the-art arena is actually home to three incredible tennis stadiums in Madrid! Each is covered by a retractable roof, so fans can enjoy games all year round. Every spring, it hosts some of the biggest names in the game at the Mutua Madrid Open.
While you can’t take a tour of the stadium itself, you can still enjoy plenty of the Caja Mágica’s numerous facilities. Play a game or two for yourself on one of the eighteen courts available. When you get tired, you can relax in the onsite pool or spa, or browse for souvenirs at the shopping area. This stadium really does have everything!
Address: Camino de Perales, 23
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Life is too short to speak one language and stay in one place. In 2015, this philosophy took her from familiar Ohio to sunny southern Spain. Usually drinking tinto de verano, reading Lorca, or attempting to dance flamenco (not all at once). Follow her blog, Viatic Couture, for more.