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Madrid is the capital of Spain, with a rich cultural heritage and loads of world-class attractions that cover the spectrum. Tourists flock to the city each year for its interesting historic sights, museums and vibrant nightlife. Major hire car companies are located around the city, but to secure the cheapest deal you should compare car hire options online and make a booking as early as possible.
Tourists can reach the city via the Madrid Barajas International Airport, from which it is possible to get to your destination by train, metro or bus. However if you want to travel outside the city limits it is better to have your own vehicle. Car hire in Madrid from the airport can start paying for itself right away as the terminal is about 12kms from the city centre.
With a car rental in Madrid you can reach a range of locations outside the city such as Avila, Chinchon or El Escorial. Vehicles can be arranged through international and local companies such as Europcar, Avis and Hertz. With a variety of vehicles to choose from, there are options to suit everyone from families and groups of friends to solo business travellers.
Traffic travels on the right side of the road and overtakes on the left. It is prohibited to talk on a mobile phone while you are driving and don't park where there is a yellow line. The city is connected to a major motorway network that includes the M30 and M40. The A-1 connects the city to outlying destinations such as Burgos, Vitoria and San Sebastian.
Famous attractions within the capital include the Plaza de Colon, Plaza de la Villa and Puerta del Sol. If you have your own vehicle, however, it is possible to reach nearby attractions such as Alcala de Henares, a UNESCO World Heritage site. This historic learning centre was first opened in 1499 and gained fame during the Renaissance. Another site outside the city is Aranjuez where you can dine in style at market restaurants and see the Palacio Real.
Spring and autumn are the best times to visit the capital of Spain as there are fewer crowds during these seasons. During August, many of the local residents go to their holiday homes and many restaurants are shut during this period. There are festivals throughout the year, such as the Feast of St James on the 25th July and All Saints' Day on the 1st November, which are good reasons to plan a visit. January is the coldest month, when temperatures can drop to just 2°C.