Spanish fly - With an unsurpassed vibrancy, MADRID has more to offer than you . might first think.

Words: Simone Baird

Photographs: Spanish Tourist Office

Madrid is a city of two faces: day and night. While it may not have the immediate beauty of Barcelona, it has a vibrancy that often proves addictive - there are few cities in Europe in which you can find yourself in a traffic jam at 4am.

Renowned for its galleries, museums and football, time in Madrid is a non-stop cultural experience. For the best taste of this incredible city, however,

experience its nightlife.

Madrid is blessed by being riddled with eating and drinking places and is one of the few Spanish cities to

have a fairly cosmopolitan palate. Most surprisingly of all - : considering its geography Madrid enjoys a constant supply of superb

Blooming marvellous: Madrid's Plaza de la Villa y Ayuntamiento

Explore Europe by train this summer

An Inter-Rail pass gives you unlimited travel on an extensive network covering 28 European cOuntries and Morocco. These flight and pass combinations Will give you the freedom to see Europe at yOur own pace.

The Cheese 8: Wine Pass (fr £323)

0 A one month Inter-Rail pass covering France, Belgium, The Netherlands, Morocco, Spain, Portugal, Turkey, Greece and Italy.

0 Includes free ferry between Brindisi, Italy and Patras, Greece.

0 Flight from Scotland to Paris

0 31 days travel insurance.

Classical Explorer (fr £399)

0 22 days Inter-Rail pass covering Greece, Italy and Turkey.

0 Includes free ferry between BrindiSi, Italy and Patras, Greece.

0 Flight from Istanbul to Scotland.

0 31 days travel insurance.

Sausage 8. Beer (fr £325)

0 One month Inter-Rail pass covering France, Belgium, Austria, Denmark, Germany, The Netherlands, SWitzerland, Czech & Slovack Republics, Croatia, Poland and

fresh seafood and some of the best sushi to be found outside of Japan.

. If you crave tapas, almost every bar serves some sort of bar snack. But, like so many things, some are great and others are nothing to write home about. Don't forget that this is Spain and everything is done much later; lunch is rarely eaten before 2pm and dinner can be drawn out until 11pm in the hot summer months.

somewhat of a resurgence in the 905, especially among the young generation, although it should be noted that there are many Spaniards who would prefer to leave it firmly in the past as well as those who will find it surprisingly dull. If you decide that you want to see the practice of matador vs bull (it’s considered more of a ritual than a sport), head off to Plaza de Toros Monumental de Las Ventas - Spain’s biggest bullfighting

Hungary. 0 Flight from Scotland to Amsterdam. 0 31 days travel insurance.

Another option is to simply purchase the rail pass only which costs from £159 (for 22 days) to £259 (for unlimited travel for a month).

Despite international opinion, bullfighting has enjoyed ring on a Sunday.

Stating the obvrous Museo del Prado/Museo Thyssen- Bornemisza/Centro de Arte Reine Sofia The big three art galleries in the capital. A pass is available for around £6 which allows unlimited access to all three for a year.

Cervecerla La Moderna A modern and very friendly bar offering superb tapas and one of the best Wine menus around.

PhotoEspana99 5000 works by 300 Spanish and international photographers displayed in 91 simultaneous shows until Sun 18 Jul. Phew.

Plaza Mayor Madrid's most famous square; grab a coffee and watch the city 90 by.

Farode Madrid The view at the top affords a near 360° View of the city and its surrounds. Don’t forget your camera.

The List alternative

Mama Carlota A veritable temple to all things Mexican offering over 100

See panel at bottom of page for STA Travel branch details.

brands of Teqwla.

Joy Madrid After a fire at Christmas, this nightclub has re-opened as the focal pomt for every nocturnal mover and shaker in the capital,

La Ida An extremely funky new-ish small cafe with Wild decor leaning towards all things African. Great background n0ise encompassing drum & bass, trip hop and funk. Soldemersol An excellent if qunky eaterie With vegetarian chorces that are extremely cheap on the pocket. Chicote Housing Madrid’s best known 19305 art deco interior and famous for never closmg in the Civrl War, this bar/cafe still has its original seats you could be Sitting where Hemingway once did.

Getting there

STA Travel offer return fares from Glasgow and Edinburgh for £179; a speCiaI fare of £167 return from Edinburgh is available but must be booked before Fri 16 Jul. Prices inc tax.

STA Travel are at 184 Byres Road and The University of Strathclyde, 90 John Street Glasgow. Tel: 0141 338 6000

27 Forrest Road, Edinburgh. Tel 0131 226 7747 0 30 Upperkirkgate, Aberdeen. Tel 0122 465 8222 0

102 THE UST 8—22 Jul 1999