Prado Museum, Madrid

4.5 out of 5 stars 168 Reviews

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  • FatesWarn's Profile Photo

    Prado - A Bosch Fan's Dream Come True

    by FatesWarn Written Jun 11, 2016

    I have always wanted to visit Spain, with my main agenda being the Prado to see "The Garden of Earthly Delights" in person. I finally convinced my husband that this was a vacation he would enjoy and hoarded enough airline miles to make the trek in style.

    I purchased my tickets online so that I could avoid the long lines everyone talks about, but I wasn't prepared for the confusion and chaos to come.
    Going there, I honestly had no idea that there was a special Bosch exhibit happening this summer - the Prado had collected additional pieces for the exhibit that are normally housed elsewhere. This was a delightful surprise, but added to the struggle for entry.
    Seeing the lines, I had no idea where to go and found someone who spoke English to help. She asked me if I wanted to see the "special exhibit" but I didn't realize that was Bosch, so I said no and we went in, but then found we couldn't enter Bosch without a timed ticket. When I went back outside, I managed to find the same person to help me get the timed ticket (included in the price of my ticket, but you have to stand in line for it).
    Three times, someone different approached me to tell me that I have a ticket and don't have to stand in line, but they didn't speak English, so I had to dig deep to get my point across with my limited Spanish. Finally, I get to the front of the line and again had to explain in Spanish that I needed a timed ticket for Bosch.
    Our time was a couple hours away, so we killed the time in nearby Retiro Park until it was time to go back.
    My ticket had already been scanned and it was a 2-day ticket, so thankfully I was able to explain (in English) to the ticket-taker at the front entrance that she had already scanned it and that I had to go back out to get the Bosch ticket.

    Once the chaos was done, I finally entered the "El Bosco" exhibit and was in heaven. It was incredibly crowded and everyone hoards around each painting, so you can't step back to enjoy them. Fortunately the bigger pieces are on large platforms that force people to stay back about two arm lengths.
    When I finally reached "The Garden of Earthly Delights", there was a huge crowd around it. You kind of have to muscle your way in as people move away (like getting a drink at a crowded bar). When I finally got an unobstructed view, I spent about 5 minutes in front of each piece.
    Two of the most stunning pieces didn't have anyone hoarded around them - the infrared reflectography and the x-ray of "The Garden of Earthly Delights". These images are captivating and I found myself studying them almost as long as the original work.

    In sum, all of the chaos I "suffered" was due to my own negligence, so the most important thing is to be prepared (and then double-check your work). I did have the good sense to make sure the painting was there, but I didn't look hard enough at everything else that was going on. The website has an annoying tendency to switch back to Spanish every time you click on a link, so that didn't help.
    For the Bosch exhibit, or any other special exhibit requiring timed entry, you can select your time when you purchase your ticket - there's a check-box for that (I think I possibly purchased my tickets too far in advance and didn't necessarily overlook this). This would prevent a lot of the hassle I experienced.

    Most important, if you really want to see the Prado, don't mess with the free entry period... the line went down the block - it looked line San Diego Comic Con. My friends tell me it only took them 25 minutes to get in once it started moving, but you don't get access to the special exhibits and it was likely even more crowded than it was when I was there. This may not be true for less popular times of year, but definitely don't do it in the summer.

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  • leics's Profile Photo

    Getting into the Prado for nothing....

    by leics Updated Aug 29, 2015

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    There's no point in writing loads about the Prado itself: it's a huge place stuffed ith artworks, some of which are indeed masterpieces.

    I like art, but not so much that I was prepared to pay the 12 euro entrance fee if there was a way of avoiding it. And there is, especially if (like me) you choose a hotel in the nearby area.

    The Prado is free every evening Monday>Saturday from 6pm-8pm, and on Sundays from 5pm to 7pm. If you stay nearby you will be able to go on more than one evening, before you nip out for your evening meal/drink (as I did). Which is very pleasing. :-)

    The queue at 5.45m, when I joined, stretched to the Velasquez statue and I was concerned that I would lose a lot of time actually getting into the museum. But it turned out not to be so. On the do of 6 the queue began to move steadily forwards, with the ticket sellers ready with free tickets as you entered and the security scanners functioning speedily. So I was inside and ready to go by 6.05 both times I visited.

    I've no doubt queues will be longer at busier times of year, so it makes sense to get there around, say, 5.30 or risk taking a bit longer to get in.

    Once inside, people quickly dispersed around the huge building so I was able to see all the paintings close-up, with no problems at all.

    Address: Paseo del Prado

    Directions: Queue at the main entrance. They won't let you in until 6pm, but you can clearly see where the 'free' queue is.

    Website: https://www.museodelprado.es/en/

    Free queue at 5.45pm February Prado frontage Rather clever scaffolding cover
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  • Kuznetsov_Sergey's Profile Photo

    Prado Museum

    by Kuznetsov_Sergey Updated Dec 14, 2014

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Prado Museum certainly is the main sight in Madrid. It occupies two buildings: Cason del Buen Retiro (a ball palace of Phillip IV) and Edificio Villanueva. The last building was constructed in 1785-1819 by arcitect Villanueva specially for the Royal museum of paintings and sculptures in order of king Ferdinand VII.
    Prado Museum is one of the world's largest art museums. It is comparable with Louvre and Hermitage on riches of the collections.

    You can watch my 2 min 26 sec Video Madrid Museums out of my Youtube channel or here on VT.

    Madrid - Prado Museum Prado Museum Prado Museum Prado Museum Prado Museum
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  • MichaelFalk1969's Profile Photo

    Prado Museum

    by MichaelFalk1969 Updated May 15, 2014

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The Museo del Prado in Madrid is one of the most famous art museums in the world, with a collection of about 3000 paintings and other works of art. It was established in 1819 by King Ferdinand VII.; since 1971, modern art was transferred to the Museo de Reina Sofia.

    The Prado collection focuses on Spanish painters such as Goya, Velazquez, El Greco as well as Dutch, Flemish and Italian renaissance and baroque artists. Some of the most priced works of art in the Prado Museum are paintings by Flemish artist Hieronymus Bosch.

    Museo del Prado

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  • Toughluck's Profile Photo

    World class art - Spend time with the Spanish Arts

    by Toughluck Written May 12, 2014

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    We specifically made a point to see the Spanish art collection, of which these were the the highlights.
    Las Meninas by Velázquez,
    Jacob’s Dream by Ribera and
    The Third of May: the Executions on Príncipe Pío by Goya.

    Other things to include:
    The Annunciation by Fra Angelico,*
    Christ washing the Disciples’ Feet by Tintoretto,
    The Descent from the Cross by Rogier van der Weyden,
    The Garden of Earthly Delights by Hieronymous Bosch, and
    The Three Graces by Rubens.

    Address: Calle Ruiz de Alarcón 23 Madrid 28014

    Phone: 34 91 330 2800.

    Website: https://www.museodelprado.es/en/

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  • GentleSpirit's Profile Photo

    One of the best museums in the world

    by GentleSpirit Updated Mar 5, 2013

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The Museo del Prado, the art collection of the Spanish Royal Family, is one of the very best overall collections of European art. The collection is especially strong in the Spanish painters, particularly Velasquez (my favorite) and Goya. I also loved the great collection of Titian and Italian Renaissance paintings they had.

    The collection is especially interesting in that it reflects the origins of the royal family as well. Carlos V was Holy Roman Emperor and King of a Spain that was suddenly a European and world power. Carlos was the son of Juana of Castile (daughter of Ferdinand and Isabella- the Reyes Catolicos) and Phillip the Handsome (Hapsburg house, duke of Burgundy from Flanders). You see the increasing influence and presence of the artists from the Low Countries in the collection from this period. Why? well in this case, Carlos V actually spent very little time in Spain. He had grown up in the Low Countries and spent the majority of his reign there.

    One of the really nice things about the Prado,other than the very high level of quality of its exhibits, is that the museum itself is not as enormous as the Louvre or British Museum. You can go through it at a relaxed pace and see most if not all of it without having to spend days or weeks there. Give yourself at least 4 hours to see the Prado.

    Address: Calle Ruiz de Alarcón 23 Madrid 28014

    Website: http://www.museodelprado.es/

    Velasquez in front of the Prado Museum Statue of Goya at Museo del Prado
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  • Redang's Profile Photo

    Museo del Prado (Prado Museum)

    by Redang Updated Jul 7, 2012

    4 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The best museum of the world about painting.

    Important notice: As of 16th Janiary 2012, the museum will open 7 days a week.

    Free entry:
    - Monday to Saturday: From 18h to 20h (6pm to 8pm)
    - Sunday and bank holidays: From 17h to 19h (5pm to 7pm)

    Info about opening hours and prices:
    - www.museodelprado.es/visita-el-museo (en Español)
    - www.museodelprado.es/en/visit-the-museum (in English)

    Address: Paseo del Prado s/n.

    Directions: How to get there:
    - Metro: Atocha (line 1) or Banco de España (line 2)
    - Bus: 9, 10, 14, 19, 27, 34, 37 and 45
    - Train: Atocha station

    Phone: Tel.: (+34) 91 330 28 00

    Website: http://www.museoprado.es

    Museo del Prado (Madrid, Spain) Painter Vel��zquez (Museo del Prado, Madrid, Spain)

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  • jlanza29's Profile Photo

    One of the best in the world !!!!

    by jlanza29 Written Jan 29, 2012

    One of Madrid's and Spain's biggest attraction is the Prado .... one of the best in the world no questions asked .... on par with the Lourve in Paris with some of the most beautiful art works in the world. Give yourself plenty of time !!! this place is huge !!!!! We came on Sunday afternoon when there is free entrance after 4:00 pm, but be warned the lines to get in free run almost a mile long ... so get there early and be ready to fight the huge crowds. The normal entrance fee is 12 euro's. A must do in Madrid !!!!!

    Address: Calle Ruiz de Alarcón 23, Madrid 28014

    Directions: In front of the Ritz Hotel, can't miss it ... everyone knows where it's at !!!!!

    Phone: 34 91 330 2800

    Website: http://www.museodelprado.es/en

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  • IreneMcKay's Profile Photo

    Prado Museum

    by IreneMcKay Written Jan 1, 2012

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    This museum is world famous and we intended to visit until we saw the length of the queues outside!!! I was not waiting in that not even for Goya and Velasquez. The area round about is well worth visiting. I liked the statues around the museum.

    Goya in front of the Ritz Hotel. Velazquez in front of the Prada.
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  • Danalia's Profile Photo

    Prado Museum

    by Danalia Written Apr 18, 2011

    The Museum presents the following collections:

    The Spanish Collection, The Flemish Collection,The Italian Collection.

    The Prado also holds important collections from the French, Dutch, German and British schools, as well as sculpture, prints, drawings and coins. All told, the Prado holds over 9,000 paintings, 7,000 prints and drawings and nearly 1,000 coins. The collection is so vast that only 1,500 works can be displayed on exhibit with the remainder of the collection rotated.

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  • Danalia's Profile Photo

    Prado Museum

    by Danalia Updated Apr 18, 2011

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The Prado Museum is renowned as being the largest art gallery in the world.
    It also exhibits sculptures, drawings, coins and other works of arts, but it is undoubtedly its large collection of paintings which has given it fame worldwide.
    It houses more than 8,600 paintings, of which they exhibit less than 2,000 because of lack of space available.
    Many museums throughout the world have less artistic riches in their halls than the Prado Museum has in storage.

    The present day art gallery comes from the royal collections of the old Trinidad Museum, as well as acquisitions, donations and bequests.

    Its history began during the reign of Charles III, when he tried to create a single art collection under one roof.
    But it was not until the reign of Fernando VII when the Royal Museum of Painting and Sculpture was created, on 19th November 1819.
    The kings death caused inheritance problems and endangered the unity of the collection, but with the disappearance of the monarchy in Spain the museum became national property and became known as the Prado National Museum.

    From then to this date, the works of art have survived several challenges and were transferred several times during the Spanish Civil War, ending up in the Swiss city of Geneva and being returned to Madrid during the Second World War.

    Nowadays, its treasures are exhibited in two adjacent buildings : the Villanueva Building where the majority of the works are housed, and the Cason del Buen Retiro.

    When to come?

    Tuesdays to Saturdays: 9am-7pm
    Sundays, holidays, 24th and 31st december: 9am-2pm
    Mondays: closed
    Closed 1st January, good Friday, 1st May, 25th December

    Address: Paseo del Prado

    Directions: You can get there by Subway to Atocha, Banco de España stations; Line 1,2
    Get yourself ready to spend many hours there, or ,if you have time, to come visit the Museum twice.

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  • breughel's Profile Photo

    Prado museum vs. Thyssen-Bornemisza

    by breughel Updated Apr 9, 2011

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    One might be tempted to compare the famous MUSEO NACIONAL DEL PRADO with the THYSSEN BORNEMISZA collection on the other side of the same avenue. I visited both museums several times and must say that my aesthetic pleasure was much greater each time at the Thyssen-Bornemisza than at the Prado Museum.
    I confess that I am not a fan of the Spanish school with its painters such as El Greco, Ribalta, Ribera, Murillo, or Zurbaran. My taste or judgement has probably been "spoiled" by having grown up surrounded by Flemish and Dutch paintings.
    Fortunately for those who might share my taste, the Prado has a large section of Flemish painters (1000 paintings) including Van de Weyden, Bosch ("the Garden of Delights") and Rubens and 200 works from Dutch painters.
    Most spectacular is Jerome Bosch whose pictures have always fascinated viewers; Philip II, king of Spain, was a major art collector who liked the bizarre fantasies of this Netherlandish master.

    If in his time Bosch was regarded as the inventor of monsters and chimeras, today his paintings still hold as an intriguing attraction reflecting mysterious practices of the Middle Ages.

    I was surprised during my last visit at the Prado to notice that guides stopped their groups in front of his famous triptych " The Garden of the Delights " to explain at length its symbolism, while in previous years they would spend more time on Velazquez and other painters of the Spanish school.
    Jerome Bosch seems a rising star in the world of the fans of the esotericism, the mysteries and the sects. Should we see here a collateral effect of the "Da Vinci Code" esoteric passion?

    With the help of Google Earth it is now possible to see major works of the Prado such as the Garden of Delights in detail and high resolution. Fantastic!

    On the other side of the Paseo del Prado, the Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum was enlarged in June 2004 to display more than 200 paintings collected by Carmen Thyssen-Bornemisza. The collection of the Baroness is a natural continuation of the historical Thyssen-Bornemisza collection (located in Madrid since 1992) and includes 17th century Dutch painting, 19th century landscape, North American painting, Impressionism, Post-impressionism and Avant-Garde movements. It is a real pleasure to visit the new galleries which complement the historical collection. Quality and variety are the characteristics of this museum which now belongs among the Europe’s best museums of paintings.

    To conclude: a visit to Madrid must include both museums.

    Jerome Bosch Prado museum.
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  • Wondertime's Profile Photo

    Prado

    by Wondertime Updated Apr 4, 2011

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Prado Museum is huge ! Consider to spend 3 hours here. You can give a break in their coffe shop. ( or visit it in 2 days, 2 hours each day)
    Prado has great art collection of Flaman painters including famous painting "Gardens of Eden / El Bosco", Rubens, Velasquez, Goya, El Greco and many more...

    Hours
    From 9am to 8pm: Tuesday to Sunday and public holidays.
    From 9am to 2pm: 24 December, 31 December and 6 January.
    Last entry to galleries is 30 minutes before closing time.
    Galleries are cleared 10 minutes before closing time.

    *De 9.00am~ 14.00 pm
    24 de diciembre
    31 de diciembre
    6 de enero

    Closed
    Mondays and
    1 de enero
    1 de mayo
    25 de diciembre
    Viernes Santo

    Permanent Collection
    General admission 6 Euro

    Free days
    Tuesday to Saturday 6 to 8 pm
    Every Sunday 5 to 8 pm

    12 de octubre (D?a de la Hispanidad)
    6 de diciembre (D?a de la Constituci?n)
    2 de mayo (Fiesta Oficial de la Comunidad de Madrid)
    18 de mayo (D?a Internacional de los Museos)

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  • marielexoteria's Profile Photo

    Prado Museum

    by marielexoteria Updated Apr 4, 2011

    4 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    One of Madrid's famous art museums and part of the "Triangle of Culture" together with Thyssen-Bornemisza and Reina Sofia museums. It's not as big as the Louvre but it has a good collection of paintings, drawings and sculptures, including an interesting exhibition of Middle Eastern carpets, pottery, paintings, etc.

    Minus points for not allowing visitors to take pictures inside the museum, even without flash (although I found out after I took the last 2 pictures of this tip).

    Address: Paseo del Prado

    Directions: Nearest metro stations: Atocha and Banco de España

    Garden and statue next to one of the entrances Art on the outer facade Sculpture Painting of Saint John the Baptist
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    The Building

    by barbskie Updated Apr 4, 2011

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    This popular museum is really that very interesting to see. This is an art Museum housing the world's richest and most comprehensive collection of Spanish painting, Italian and Flemish and other masterpieces of other schools of European paintings. Has a Neo-classical style of building designed by Architect Juan de la Villanueva as commisioned by Charles III in 1785. During the war of Napoleon's time, the costruction was stopped and was completed in 1819 under Ferdinand VII. Then was opened to the public as the Royal Museum of Painting. In 1868, it became the National Museum of Prado.

    Address: Villanueva Building , Paseo del prado

    Phone: Tel: (091) 330 2800 or 330 2900

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