The historical gardens and public park that cover 118 hectares constitute one of Madrid’s most important tourist attractions as well as being a favourite amenity for locals. El Retiro is a Bien de Interés Cultural (National Heritage Site) that first opened to the public in 1767 after previously being the sole preserve of the Royal Family.
The word retiro meaning to retire in Spanish defines this important urban green space that is nowadays completely enclosed by Madrid’s metropolitan area. The park accommodates numerous architectural set pieces, art galleries, sculptures and landscapes laid out over the 17th and 21st Centuries. A visit here is obligatory for anyone interested in appreciating how the locals enjoy their city.