Puerta del Sol is just two stations away from my house and normally I will either stop in Atocha station and walk to Sol (which I normally call it).
23 minutes or if you walk pretty slowly about 30 minutes. It sounds a lot of walking but trust me, you won’t feel it especially if you are in Spain during one of the best seasons IMO.
The center of Madrid is occupied with so many aesthetic architectures and soon you will be lost in time. Never realizing that you have walked that whole 1.8 ~2.0 km. It is really an amazing walk and we love walking around this area.
Puerta means door.
Del is de + el means of the.
Sol means sun.
Puerta del Sol means door of the sun.
This is the location of the 0 km, which means the center of Madrid where all the Spanish roads start.
Right in front of the 0 km walk of fame is the clock building where the Spaniards or anyone who wants prosperity for their life in the new year ahead will eat twelve grapes (las doce uvas de la suerte) at midnight right before the clock strikes 12 on the 31st of December every year.
Around this time whenever we want to buy some grapes, we realize that there is a spike in grapes price. Demand and supply rules!
What can you do in Sol?
Right in the center of Sol Plaza, you will find the bear and strawberry statue (El Oso y El Madroño); the most famous symbol of Madrid (other than Real Madrid FC and Christiano Ronaldo hehehe).
Other than that of course food gastronomy. If you want to try tapas (wide variety of appetizers and snacks in Spanish cuisine), you can visit Mercado de San Miguel, one of the oldest and most beautiful Madrid’s market.
You can watch theater or musical at one of the many theaters along GranVia, watch movie at Callao, shopping at famous local brand names like Zara, Mango, El Corte Ingles and etc.
The Royal Palace (Palacio Real) is very near too about 10 minutes walking distance from Sol, a little less than a kilometer.
There are so many attractions nearby Sol and every major ones are just walking distance. I always advise my friends who normally have only one day to spend in Madrid to stop by at Sol and then walk about from here.
I am not really crazy about it because it reminds me of cakoi or youtiao in Malaysia but when churros is served with yummilicious hot chocolate dipping sauce, one dip is all you need.
Make sure you ask for a glass of water too. It’s normally free. You will feel very thirsty when you eat churros con chocolate.
Don’t forget to download all your maps from MetroMadrid before you come. I especially love their Touristic Map of Metro Network. It helps me a lot in planning where is the location of the tourist spots that I want to visit or if I want to omit them from my list.
How to go to Puerta del Sol?
You can reach here easily either by Metro line 1 (blue) ,2 (red) , 3 (yellow) or Cercanias to Sol Station.