Junior High Culture Trip to Madrid and Valencia
First we will travel to Madrid. Madrid is the capital and the largest city in Spain. It is best known for its great cultural and artistic heritage. We will spend 3 days exploring the famous landmarks, parks and museums.
These will include:
- The El Prado museum to observe the works of Goya, El Greco and Carvaggio.
- The Reina Sofía National Museum and Art Center, houses Madrid’s best collection of modern art and includes many of Pablo Picasso’s most revered works including the renownedGuernica and it also houses masterpieces by Miró, Kandinsky, Dalí, Bacon, and more.
- Palacio Real – The Royal Palace is considered to be one of the most emblematic and beautiful buildings in Madrid and is one of the biggest in Europe. Though it is the official residence of the King of Spain, the royal family does not actually reside here and it is generally used only for state ceremonies.
- Plaza Mayor, Puerta del Sol, Plaza Colon, Catedral de la Almudena, Gran Via, Alcala Street and Paseo de la Castellana, El Retiro Park and many more– all of which are beautiful sights, squares and streets to observe city life, shop and soak up the atmosphere.
- Mercado de San Miguel is an indoor market, worth entering for the sights and smells of dried ham, fine wine, freshly baked goods and other treats from the vendors inside.
- Flamenco dancing and dinner– an evening to see an authentic Flamenco show in the centre of Madrid, and we will enjoy typical Spanish food during the performance.
- Santiago Bernabeu, the home of the local football club Real Madrid. Real Madrid is the most successful football club in Spain and Europe, having been crowned Spanish champions a record 32 times and European champions a record 10 times. We will take a self-guided tour of the Santiago Bernabeu Stadium. It includes tours around the field, the dressing rooms, the Press Room and the Real Madrid Museum where the trophies and other memorabilia are kept.
We will take the high speed train from Madrid and spend one day visiting Valencia – a charming historic city on the east coast of Spain famous as the birthplace of Paella and for the recently built City of Arts and Sciences. This is an entertainment-based cultural and architectural complex that is the major modern tourist destination in the city of Valencia. It is a massive architectural project designed by Santiago Calatrava and Felix Candela. Some of the buildings we anticipate visiting are:
- El Museu de les Ciències Príncipe Felipe— Is an interactive museum of science that resembles the skeleton of a whale. It occupies around 40,000 m² on three floors.
- L’Hemisfèric— an IMAX Cinema, planetarium and laserium. The building is meant to resemble a giant eye, and has an approximate surface of 13,000 m². The Hemesferic also known as the planetarium or the “eye of knowledge,” is the centerpiece of the City of Arts and Sciences.
- L’Umbracle— a landscaped walk with plant species indigenous to Valencia (such as rockrose, lentisca, rosemary, lavender, honeysuckle, bougainvillea, palm tree).
- L‘Oceanogràfic — an open-air oceanographic park. It is the largest oceanographic aquarium in Europe with 110,000 square meters and 42 million liters of water. It was built in the shape of a water lily and is the work of architect Félix Candela. Each building represents different aquatic environments including the Mediterranean, Wetlands, Temperate and Tropical Seas, Oceans, the Antarctic, the Arctic, Islands and the Ted Sea. This aquarium is a home to over 500 different species including dolphins, belugas, sawfish, jellyfish, starfish, sea urchins, walruses, sea lions, seals, penguins, turtles, sharks,and rays. It also inhabits wetland bird species.
We will also spend some time on the beach and we hope to sample some of the regions paella!