Plaza in Madrid

The legendary art museums of Madrid

There’s no shortage of art museums in Madrid. Madrid (one of my favorite cities) is globally renowned for its numerous art museums and collections ranging from modern to the Middle Ages to ancient. The Spanish capital houses one of the most extensive aggregations of famous artwork worldwide, with no shortage of museums to showcase them.

The Prado

Arguably Madrid’s most famous museum, the Prado has several important permanent collections worth visiting, including a huge assortment of works by Diego Velasquez, the Garden of Earthly Delights by Heironymous Bosch, and the “Black Room” of paintings by Francisco Goya.

Reina Sofia

Museo Reina Sofia facade
Credit: Museoreinasofia on Wikimedia

Madrid’s most well-known modern art museum is the Reina Sofia. Highlights include a number of works by Spanish artists Dali, Picasso, and Miro. One of the most famous works in the Sofia is Guernica, which is stunningly large.


Museo Thyssen facade in Madrid
Credit Wikimedia user Jean-Pierre Dalbéra

This is the final museum in Madrid’s “Golden Triangle” (the other two being the Reina Sofia and the Prado). The Thyssen-Bornemisza’s collection includes Impressionist, Expressionist, and early 20th century art.

Museo de América

Spain famously plundered the Americas in a rapacious search for gold, and has amassed one of the greatest collections of Native American artifacts in this splendid museum.

Museo del Romanticismo

Interior of the museum of Romanticism in Madrid Spain
Credit: Wikimedia user manuel m. v.

This museum is dedicated to the Romanticism period of the 19th century. The collection is in a beautiful old two story building and the exhibits offer an example of what life looked like for upper class Spanish citizens of the time.

Museo Arqueológico Nacional

Archaeological museum facade in Madrid

This archeological museum shares a building with the national library, and features artifacts from Egyptian, Celtic, Iberian, Greek, Roman, and other ancient periods.

Museo Sorolla

This museum features the works and studio of Joaquin Sorolla, a late 19th century Spanish Impressionist painter. The building has been left as it was during the artist’s death in 1923, down to brushes left next to unfinished canvas.

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Museo Lázaro Galdiano

This museum, housed in a palatial estate building, contains the collection of Lázaro Galdiano. The collection includes mainly works from Iberians, but you can find Bosch, Goya, Velazquez, and El Greco as well as many other sculpture and jewelry artists inside.

Any other art museums in Madrid you love that I missed? Let me know in the comments!

Heading to Madrid sometime soon? Check out my guide to tapas dishes you have to try in Madrid!

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Artist with a passion for travel.

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