Faro de Moncloa
Broadly visible to anyone taking a stroll in the north-western Madrid area, the futuristic 110 meter-high Faro of Moncloa rises up in the skies, delivering the highest viewpoint opportunity in the central Madrid area – the top-deck being located a daring 92 meters up. Built in 1992, the year that Madrid held the status of European Capital of Culture, the former light-tower now serves to give a broad view over Spain’s capital, featuring various informational charts about the demographic development and growth of Madrid. The mother of all viewpoints, this is a sight you won’t forget.
Central Viewpoint – Cibelles
Offering a 360 degree view of Madrid, the tower of the cultural center Palacio de Cibeles lets you take a look at some of the most emblematic sights in Madrid – from the two famous streets Gran Vía and the Calle del Alcalá, to the Bank of Spain and the seemingly endless avenue of Paseo de la Castellana to the north. Even the ostentatious Paseo del Prado, home to world-renowned museums, such as the Prado, Reina-Sofía and Thyssen-Bornemisza, will unravel below you.
Círculo de Bellas Artes
It might not look like it from below, but the topmost floor of the Círculo de Bellas Artes building offers one of Madrid’s finest sights. The Círculo is a private organization founded in 1880 dedicated to funding and protecting fine art, housing temporary art exhibitions. Its top-floor terrace reveals a stunning view of the city from a central perspective. Gran Vía, the Retiro park, even the peaks of the Guadarrama mountains can be seen, stretching out in the distance. This exquisite atmosphere comes with a special touch, as very often students of art classes and amateur painters will be interpreting their very own vision of the beautiful Madrid skyline in their sketchpads. While enjoying a drink, or an excellent meal at the rooftop restaurant Azotea- Tartan Roof, you will be sure to pick up the authentic city vibe.
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Catedral de la Almudena
From the central dome of the stunning Almudena cathedral, the seat of the Roman Catholic Archdiócesis of Madrid, spectators can take in the lovely bird’s-eye perspective of the Royal Palace of Madrid and its gardens. Visitors will be amazed at the architectural masterpiece, its full magnitude only visible from above. However, the viewpoint is only accessible to visitors of the official cathedral museum, which is more than a worthwhile visit due to the incredible history of its construction and the problematic inauguration of the cathedral itself throughout the tumultuous Spanish Civil War.
Viewpoints at Madrid Río
To be precise, the viewpoint at the Madrid Río Park doesn’t exactly offer a view from above, but rather a view from afar. If you have some extra time on your hands, a visit to the lovely park at the shores of Madrid’s river will not only allow you to capture a perfect panoramic view of the historical center, but might also make for a small escape from the more touristic sites in the center and let you relax with the locals.
Templo de Debod
This viewpoint might not be the highest in Madrid, but it’s certainly one of the most beautiful. This is mostly due to the 2000 year-old original Egyptian Temple of Debod, a present to Spain by the Egyptian government in 1960, in recognition of Spain’s assistance in saving several ancient Egyptian monuments. Even if you don’t find the time to enter the temple – the place itself is an absolute must-see location. Surrounded by palm trees and rectangular water pools, it creates a special atmosphere, including a wonderful view to the south-east and west, making it the number one spot for taking in the sunset.
Teleférico of Madrid
This is much more than a viewpoint, but visitors with motion-sickness should be careful, as the aerial cableway ride running just about 40 meters above the ground will take you from its starting point near the Parque del Oeste all the way into the heart of the Casa del Campo park. This breathtaking 10 minute ride will open up a whole new perspective, as Madrid slowly glides into the distance, revealing an outstanding one-of-a-kind view of the skyline. At the end of the journey, visitors are invited to enjoy a stroll through the park, home to various species of deer, a zoo, as well as an amusement park.
Starting Point in the City Center: Paseo del Pintor Rosales, Madrid, Spain
Starting/Returning Point at Casa de Campo: Calle Cerro Garabita, Madrid, Spain