Start at the Prado, Spains response to the Louvre. One of the most visited sites in the world, the Prado is essential for any trip to Madrid. Housed in an 18th century neoclassical building, The Prado Museum displays thousands of works from its vast collection, spanning the 1200s to the 1900s. Some of the stand-out pieces include Las Meninas (The Maids of Honor), an inventive self-portrait by Spanish-born Velázquez, and The Garden of Earthly Delights, a triptych from Dutch painter Hieronymus Bosch. Youll wander its hall as your expert guided reveals the stories and secrets behind works by Goya, Fra Angelico, El Greco, Rembrandt, and others. Explore the largest collection of Italian masterpieces outside of Italy in addition to a fine selection of prints and sculptures.
Next, make your way to the Reina Sofia Museum, which houses an exquisite collection of Spanish modern and contemporary art. Part of a former hospital, the Reina Sofia became gallery space for 20th century art back in the 1990s. On this tour, your guide will introduce you to the different artistic movements showcased here, including abstractionism, cubism, surrealism, and modernism. Youll come face to face with works by the iconic Pablo Picasso, including his world-changing painting, Guernica. Youll browse works by Joan Miró, like The Man with a Pipe, and Salvador Dalis Face of the Great Masturbator, learning about the techniques and strategies they used to create their oftentimes quirky works of art. Youll discover all about the social and political movements that shaped these artists and their work, including the Spanish Civil War. Youll leave with a richer understanding of 20th century Spain, allowing you to wander confidently through one of the worlds largest contemporary art collections.