Puerta del Sol is one of the nerve centres of Madrid. The first buildings surrounding this area were begun in the 16th Century, although the square took on the importance it holds today with the construction of the Casa de Correos building in 1768.
In the 19th Century the square was completely transformed and between 1857 and 1862 it took on its current look following the demolition of a number of buildings. This site, “kilometre zero” from which all radial roads out of Madrid start, has witnessed many different historical events, including the Esquilache Mutiny in 1766, the resistance against Napoleon’s troops on 2nd May 1808 and the coronation of Fernando VII in 1812.
Puerta del Sol must not be missed. It features several attractions, such as the “Oso y Madroño” (the “Bear and the Strawberry Tree”) statue, located between Alcalá street and Carrera de San Jerónimo.
The square is closely linked to the New Years Eve tradition of eating twelve grapes at midnight, one on each chime. The large clock that dominates the square sees the new year in for many Spanish people.
TRAVEL FACT: The Puerta del Sol is considered the "heart" of the city and is one of the busiest places in Madrid.
Start at Puerta del Sol and walk in any direction. There is no way to be disappointed.
SEPARATED DESTINATION! behold, you're on the "very heart of Madrid" scatter your hearty regrets to the four winds of heaven.
No trip to Madrid will be complete without visiting the Puerta del Sol, a square at the center of the city where you'll find the El Oso y El Madroño, one of the city's most notable structures.
This plaza is the heart of Madrid and one of the busiest places in the city - a hub for the local transit system, a favorite meeting spot for locals, street performers, and all the tourists.