Royals - Madrid's Royal Palace
Updated: Jan 19, 2019
The Royal Palace is one of my favorite places in Madrid. When I visited back in 2010, it became one of the spots that sticks out most in my mind about the city. Peacocks wandering the courtyard. Stunning, grand architecture. Every room a different color and theme. Your eyes were constantly occupied, jumping from painting to piece of furniture to sculpture. It was overwhelmingly beautiful.
Note: you are not allowed to take pictures inside the palace. There's security in every room to enforce this. This does not mean that people haven't tried and succeeded at snapping photos, but if you get caught it really isn't worth being thrown out and missing the rest of this glimpse into royalty.
So when the group of us in Spain this last October decided we wanted to go see the Royal Palace, I was super excited. We made our way over to that part of the city after visiting Museo Reina Sofía. We had checked the hours beforehand - the Palace closed at 8pm, and stopped taking visitors in at 7pm. We arrived at 6:09pm.
Unfortunately, something that Google had missed was that, starting in October, the Royal Palace switched over to their winter hours - closing at 6pm. We were an hour and 9 minutes too late to get in.
Pro tip: always make sure to check the location's website for hours and other info when you're planning a visit. Google has a lot of good information, but it is not always accurate and updated.
Although disappointed, we didn't let this ruin the experience. While we were too late to get in, we arrived at the perfect time to catch one of the most stunning sunsets I've ever seen. Golden hour was at it's peak, which meant it was time for a photoshoot. We had so much fun, photographing the palace and each other (and some other tourists as we traded group pics).
Pro tip: be flexible when traveling. Even if you have things perfectly researched and planned out, things happen and something is likely to go wrong along the way. Your experience is what you make of it. So even when something goes wrong, keep an open mind and positive attitude and make the best of it.
Once the sun had fully gone down, we walked away from the palace smiling and laughing. It was a very different experience than I had in 2010, and a very different experience than we had planned on having, but I felt just as happy and elated walking away as I did 8 years before.
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