JIYOUNG SIM- If you love art museums, Madrid is the perfect place to stay in. There are a lot of museums and art exhibitions in Madrid and many of them are free for students. Today I am going to write about the three most famous museums in Madrid. The three museums are National Museum of Prado (Museo Nacional del Prado), Reina Sofía National Museum Arts Center (Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía), and the Thyssen Bornemisza Museum. All three of them are located very close to each other so you can walk from one to another, although I do not recommend visiting more than one on a day. You probably would not be able to finish even one on a visit.
Reina Sofía Museum is a national modern art museum. It is famous for the original work of Guernica by Picasso. Its collection also includes masterpieces of modern artists like Picasso, Dalí, and Miró. Reina Sofía is my personal favorite of the three museums because I personally like modern art more than classic. For those of you who love modern art, Reina Sofía Museum is a very exciting place to visit. Its admission is free for students so do not forget to bring your student ID with you!
Prado Museum is the largest and the oldest of the three. It is almost 200 years old. Prado is known for the magnificent collection which includes numbers of masterpieces from Middle Ages to 18th century. The works by El Greco, Velazquez, Goya, and Murillo are some of the featured masterpieces. Prado is also free with your student ID. My recommendation before you go see the Museum is to take a look at the website. Since the museum is very large and the number of works is enormous, it is impossible to see everything in one visit. You can find recommended tours under different themes and also explanations on each work on the website, so planning your tour before visiting will help you decide what you want to see. Otherwise you might be lost with where you want to start and what you want to see.
The Collection of the Thyssen Bornemisza Museum includes masterpieces from 13th century to 20th century. There are nearly one thousand works on display. It covers a wide range of periods and styles from the Baroque, Rococo, and Romanticism to Impressionism and Pop Art. I like their special exhibitions as much as their collection. They often have special exhibitions that are very interesting so do not forget to check them out. Unlike Prado and Reina Sofía, students do not get free admission but still get discount. However, the good news is that if you are studying through the Tufts-Skidmore Spain program, you can get unlimited reimbursement for museum visits! My favorite part of the Thyssen Bornemisza Museum is its terrace. It has a very nice terrace where you can enjoy a cup of coffee (although I don’t drink coffee) after the visit. Especially in the summer when the weather is hot, a visit to the Thyssen Museum is a perfect way to escape from the hot weather!