The most convenient tourist office in the heart of tourist attractions is located on Plaza Mayor 27 (Salón de Columnas de la Casa de la Panadería; tel. 91-454-44-10; www.esmadrid.com; Metro: Sól or Ópera); it’s open daily from 9:30am to 8:30pm. In addition to personal advice and information (including providing lists of hotels and hostales if you specifically request them), this center has several terminals to tap into the esMadrid web site. The office also offers free downloadable audioguides in mp3 format. Ask for a street map of the next town on your itinerary, especially if you’re driving.
The Colón Tourist Center (www.esmadrid.com) is located near the Archaeological Museum on the Paseo de Recoletos in the underground passageway beneath Plaza de Colón. It does not offer telephone service but is open for visits daily from 9:30am to 8:30pm. Like the Plaza Mayor site, it has terminals for access to esMadrid and offers specific advice for students who have come to Madrid to study Spanish. A booklet, “Learn Spanish in Madrid,” gives a rundown of current talks, films, and guided tours. An overview is also available on the www.esmadrid.com web site. Similar walk-in information points with the same hours are also available at Plaza de Cibeles (opposite the Prado bus stop), Plaza de Callao on the corner with Calle Preciados, and the Paseo del Arte next to the Museo de Reina Sofía.
The Tourist Office of Spain (www.spain.info) can help you plan your trip with listings of lodging options, attractions, tour operators, and packages, plus handy tips on getting around. For the viewpoints of individual travelers, check www.tripadvisor.com and www.virtualtourist.com—but be wary, as such sites tend to highlight reviewers with personal agendas and have been known to list more positive results first for advertisers. Among the individual commercial websites touting Madrid information, www.madridman.com seems the most credible.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.