Madrid is now officially one of the leafiest capital cities in the world, thanks to energetic programs for planting a multitude of trees, flowers, and grasslands organized in the last decade by the Comunidad de Madrid. Some parks -- such as Casa de Campo and the Retiro -- have been around for centuries, but new green zones are springing up annually. This overall change from just a few decades ago is remarkable.

An Area You May Want to Avoid -- The zone by the teleférico in the Casa de Campo has a very good self-service restaurant with a terrace section enjoying fine views of the park -- an excellent place to enjoy a relaxing lunch before walking down a wood-fringed park to Lago. But some 500m (1,640 ft.) to the west, it's a different story. There, the road that runs just inside the park is a pickup zone for prostitutes and a drug zone, so you should avoid that particular section of the park entirely.

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