Are you moving to Madrid and don’t know which is the best neighbourhood to live in? Keep reading because this post is for you.
Spain’s capital is internationally known for its cultural diversity, vibrant nightlife and bustling restaurants. Each neighbourhood in Madrid has its own identity, but not all of them offer the same security and quality of life, so it’s important to do the right research to know which Madrid barrio best suits your needs.
The first thing to know is that Madrid is divided into 21 districts, which are in turn divided into smaller neighbourhoods. Usually, these areas are known by the name of the neighbourhood and not the district to which they belong.
If you are looking for a quiet and safe neighbourhood, the best neighbourhoods will undoubtedly be in the city centre, but they are also the areas where the price of buying and renting is much higher. Let’s take a look at what are the best neighbourhoods in Madrid:
This is one of the most traditional and charming neighbourhoods, which will make you feel at home in a city that has as much life as Madrid has. It’s the favourite neighbourhood for locals to live in the central area of the city, given its large number of leisure and gastronomic activities.
However, Chamberí is probably not the best area to live with children, given its lack of green areas and recreational or sports facilities. If what we are looking for is social life and leisure, it is a fantastic option on the other hand.
As areas to visit we have the famous ghost station of Chamberí, the Plaza Olavide, the Bermejillo Palace or the Sorolla Museum, with exclusive collections of the famous Spanish painter. Undoubtedly, this is an emblematic neighbourhood of Madrid that you shouldn’t fail to take into consideration.
In this district are the neighbourhoods of: Palacio, Cortes, Embajadores, Justicia (Chueca), Malasaña and Sol. Without a doubt, this is the perfect place to live. In the heart of Madrid, very well communicated with all public transport, a great variety of shops and department stores.
Full of culture, leisure, and gastronomy, it’s also the place with the highest number of tourists and one of the safest. In this district, we find one of the most expensive streets in Spain to open a business, in Calle Preciados.
Plaza Mayor, Centro, Madrid
Within Centro you’ll also find the enchanting area of Opera – As is the case with other areas of Madrid, it is not a neighbourhood per se, but due to the great influence of the Teatro Real it has become known as the Ópera area. Nestled between Calle Mayor and Bailén and the outskirts of the Opera Theatre. It retains all the charm of the Habsburg period.
There are good accommodation options here. Close to metro stops. From the more commercial city centre but in very quiet streets like El Room Mate Laura or the Mario, La casa de Madrid: a very peculiar B&B. Eat at the Amena & Coere with all the flavours of Italy or have a drink at the Anticafé.
Another of the beautiful areas that the central area of Madrid has to offer is the Retiro neighbourhood. This is characterised, as its name suggests, by the massive park built by Felipe II.
Although the price of flats and rents are somewhat higher than in other areas, the truth is that it is a really nice area to live in, with lots of people doing sports, leisure activities such as the Book Fair and the incredible views if we have near the Parque del Buen Retiro.
As areas to visit, apart from the park we have already mentioned, with lots of leisure activities, we can visit the famous Prado Museum, with large collections of renowned painters, which are visited daily by thousands of people.
Retiro Park, Retiro
But if what you are looking for is the best offer of shops and high-quality brands, one of your best options to live in is undoubtedly the Barrio de Salamanca. Home to wealthy people, it is obvious that it will not be the cheapest area to live in, but we assure you that it is certainly one of the quietest and most peaceful.
Interesting areas to visit in the Barrio de Salamanca are the Plaza de Colón, the bullfighting ring of Las Ventas or the National Archaeological Museum. This neighbourhood is undoubtedly one of the most central and one of those that can offer us the best leisure and cultural offers.
Undoubtedly one of the most expensive neighbourhoods in Madrid, the shopping area is on par with excellence with a multitude of establishments with highly renowned firms in the fashion and accessories sector. The hotels and restaurants are the most expensive and luxurious in Madrid. In this district is the Fernán Gómez Centro Cultural de la Villa, with a great cultural offer for all tastes.
Made up of the neighbourhoods of Casa de Campo, Arguelles, Ciudad Universitaria, Valdezarza, Valdemarín, El Plantío, Aravaca. This area is known for its university atmosphere, as the campus of the Complutense University of Madrid is located nearby.
Nature lovers can take a stroll around the Casa de Campo lake, and there is also the Madrid Cable Car, where you can enjoy wonderful views of the city. But undoubtedly, the most impressive highlight of this area is the incredible Madrid sunsets that can be seen from the viewpoint of the Temple of Debod, without a doubt a sunset impossible to forget.
Casa de Campo, Moncloa
When searching where to live in Madrid, in the end, it’s all about the lifestyle you want. The city has something to offer for everyone, with historic parks, enticing culture, a highly efficient metro and bus service, and of course, amazing people.