Immaculate glasshouses in the serene Paque del Retiro (©Madrid Tourist Board)
This dreamy expanse of manicured gardens, lakes, shady woods and pavilions was once the garden of the Palacio Real del Buen Retiro, and is a locals’ favourite for an escape from the city. At its centre is a vast lake (estanque), with a sprinkling of kiosks and boats for hire. At the southern end of the park, take a peek at the bizarre Ángel Caído (Fallen Angel), one of only three monuments in the world to Satan, caught midway in his fall from Paradise. Ricardo Velázquez designed the elegant Palacio de Velázquez and Palacio de Cristal in 1882. Open 7am-midnight (Apr-Oct); 7am-10pm (Nov-Mar). Admission free.