Best Things To Do During Summer In Madrid
In the summer, Madrid is getting very hot and many Madrilenos leave either for the Costa beaches or the mountains. That doesn’t mean there is nothing interesting going on for visitors. Very much the opposite: Summer is the season of festivals, open-air cinemas and concerts, clubbing, a trip to the mountains, and swimming in posh rooftop pools.
Each year, the community of Madrid runs a program called Veranos de la Villa, Summer of the City in English. Normally the different performances of theatre, music, and dance are held in various venues but, due to the restrictions of the pandemic, this year, 22 events take place in a single venue: Conde Duque Cultural Center. Among the many events between the 29th of June and August 30, there is bound to be at least one to your taste.
Explore the colorful district of La Latina and participate in the Festival de La Paloma, during which locals celebrate a virgin, dress up in traditional clothing and eat great food. If you dare, try the specialty: offals of all kinds, from lamb to chicken.
There are quite a few rooftop pools in Madrid for cooling off in the sizzling heat, but most are attached to hotels and only open to guests. An exception is the super cool GYMAGE. On top of what was the former Luna cinema, there is a pool, lounge bar, and even a fitness center.
If you travel with kids, you might prefer a waterpark over a rooftop pool, Aquopolis, at a distance of about 30 minutes from the city center by train to Henares, fits the bill perfectly.
Do as the locals and escape the summer heat on a day trip to the fresh mountain air of the Sierra de Guadarrama. You can swim in a natural pool, then return refreshed for clubbing in The Hat at night at Madrid’s coolest rooftop bar.
Pro Tip: My absolute favorite boutique hotel, located near Madrid’s Gran Via is the Hotel Santo Domingo. It even has a rooftop pool for the exclusive use of guests, so it’s never overcrowded.