Because of its central location, city sightseeing tours typically pass close to the San Fernando Royal Academy of Fine Art. A great option for seeing the academy is on a Segway tour, most of which pass the nearby Puerta del Sol, and offer a chance to enjoy Madrid's blue skies and sunshine. Alternatively, Madrid hop-on hop-off bus tours typically stop nearby, and you can visit the museum and jump back on the bus when you're done.
Things to Know Before You Go
- Art history enthusiasts shouldn't miss the museum's celebrated permanent collection, featuring 15th to 20th century works from Spanish, Italian, and Flemish artists.
- Architecture fans appreciate the academy's ornate, 17th century building and its picturesque original interiors.
- Since it's a smaller than more famous museums like the Prado, visitors enjoy a fantastic cultural experience without the crowds.
- Travelers on a budget should visit on Wednesdays, when the museum offers free entry.
How to Get There
Travelers that opt for a self-guided tour to the San Fernando Royal Academy of Fine Art should travel by metro. Hop on the 1, 2, or 3 line to the Sol transit stop. From there, it's a short walk to the museum, located at Calle de Alcalá, 13.
When to Get There
The museum is open Tuesday to Sunday, from 10am to 3pm. The museum is closed on Monday, and over the holidays. Since the academy is typically less crowded than nearby museums—like the Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum and the Prado Museum—it's a great place to visit if you find crowds at these more popular destinations.
Visiting Madrid's Bustling Puerta del Sol
Famously home to the clocktower Spaniard's watch on New Year's Eve, Puerta del Sol is a bustling square in central Madrid. Just a short walk from the academy of art, visitors find a popular public space with numerous statues, street performers, and excellent shopping. Stop by to sip a coffee at a neighborhood café, or grab a traditional sandwich (known as a bocadillo to locals).
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- Círculo de Bellas Artes (CBA)
- Puerta del Sol
- Casino Gran Vía
- Cardamomo Tablao Flamenco
- Official Real Madrid Store El Carmen
- Essential Flamenco
- House Museum of Mouse Perez (Casa Museo de Ratón Pérez)
- Lope de Vega House Museum (Casa Museo Lope de Vega)
- Plaza de Cibeles
- Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum (Museo Nacional Thyssen-Bornemisza)
- Cybele Palace (Palacio de Cibeles)
- Church of San Ginés (Iglesia de San Ginés)
- Plaza Mayor
- Prado Museum (Museo del Prado)
- Madrid Naval Museum (Museo Naval de Madrid)