Museum Nacional del Prado
Sep 3, 2015
|After a horrendous night of lack of sleep due to very loud music and children laughing and playing until after 1:30 am, (I am not enamoured with the culture of the parts of Spain we have visited)we moved our pitch to what we hoped was a quitter part of the park.
Once settled we took a taxi to the train station to Madrid.
I love the electric trains they are so quite and smooth. The trip in to the city took about 45 minutes with several stops along the way.
Once de-boarded we both remarked how unlike it was to the exquisite stations of Berlin. It was quite austere by comparison.
Unfortunately, the Tourist Information desk was hidden quite well. Up and down stairs and escalators, finally outside to a kiosk where a fellow in very very broken English sent us back inside and down an escalator, I walked right past it but Bill happen to notice a little "i" standing on a sign under the escalator.
No wonder they didn't want anyone to visit them they were horrible; unfriendly doesn't cover it.
You would have think we were stealing the maps; when Bill asked for another one I thought she would explode her lips were so tightly compressed.
We are convinced that Spain is not prepared for International visitors. (To us that includes N. America and Australia.)
Anyway we found our way to Paseo del Prado and found a beautiful 10 lane street with a huge boulevard dividing the north and south bound lanes. Massive mature trees lined both sides of the streets and the boulevard, with a sprinkling of fountains thrown in as an added touch. It was a beautiful area.
After a 10 minute walk we found the Museum. The entrance we used was quite unassuming because the usual one was under repair. Bill had bought our entry tickets on line so it was only a matter of minutes (had to go through security first) until we entered.
What we found inside was jaw dropping WOW, absolutely outstanding.
Of course, no pictures were allowed and as many of you known Bill and I don't approach museum's in the same manner. Suffice it to say we are on different planets. We quickly came to an understanding though. As I just wander, looking and reading "everything" and have no concept of directions until I start seeing things I have seen before, Bill did his thing, then studied the map and decided on the most practical route through the maze of rooms ahead of us. The paintings were displayed in different size rooms, the large wall size ones just had one painting per wall - incredible!!Other rooms had 5-6 depending on size per wall. While many of the "Greats" had two or three rooms of their art, many of their paintings were also dispersed through out the museum. Imagine viewing a "Rueben's, Rembrandt, a Goya. It was breathtaking.
It worked great having my own personal docent. We also had a list of the "Masterpieces" and the rooms they were in. Bill's route included them as well. Also, I had noticed that there was a picture of a head set beside many of the pictures so those were the ones I looked for in each of the rooms and tried to restrict myself to reading about them only. For the most part I think it worked, although I just had to sneak a few others in.
At one point Bill said OK one more room to view. I asked, "What time is it?" he replied, "7:30 pm". I was astounded we had spent almost 6 hours walking, looking and reading. I was mesmerized.
I just had to spend some time in the "Gift Shop", no worries no "Masterpieces" were for sale.
Dinner was at a street side café and we finally found some "Nachos" con Quesco!!! which we enjoyed immensely.
It was about a 20 minute walk downhill to the train station. Thanks to s few locals we didn't get on the wrong train (it was close though). When the right train arrived Bill was tapped on the shoulder and told (This one). We were grateful.
I spent the train trip reading the book we had bought with our tickets to the museum and reveling in the fact that I recognized many of the pictures of the paintings we had seen.
There were several taxis at the stand so no problem there. When I asked him about the summer palace in town he took us for a tour through Aranjuez. We were surprised at its size.
Unfortunately for us a huge 4 day, 24 hour festival was setting up. The noise was almost unbearable as it was. Couldn't imagine what it would be like over the week end.
Finally at 1 am the very, very, loud music and emcee went to bed or fell asleep as did we.