The Museum Prado is Spain’s main art museum, housing thousands of European paintings from the 12th early 19th century. Much of the collection belongs to the artist Goya – who’s art style is as varied as Spain itself. Entrance fee is 16 euros for adults, but is free for students between 16-25. Once inside, you can purchase an audio guide for 6 euros for the main exhibition and special exhibition or just 4 euros for the main exhibition. One key aspect about the museum is that you are not allowed to take photographs inside. I didn’t realise and got yelled at in Spanish.
The museum has 4 floors, lots of restrooms, a cafe and souvenir shops. I only had the chance to look at floors 0 and 1 (which are the main areas of the museum). Level 1 holds paintings from the mid 1500s to the late 1600s. It also features Goya’s famous image ‘Las Medians’, which was quite exciting to see in real life. While I did enjoy Level 1, Level 0 was by FAR my favourite. This level held Goya’s dark paintings, including the infamous image of Saturn devouring his children. The level also holds replicas of Ancient Roman statues – which the ancient history lover inside me squealed at!
I found the audio guides very useful in the museum. I’m not much of an art person, but I enjoyed hearing the history behind some of the paintings. Although some images, when they talked about the symbolism behind them, almost made me scream “BS!”. A few images in particular made me roll my eyes. My only other problem with the museum was the shop didn’t have much variety. I would have liked to be able to choose what images I wanted printed out, rather than having the choice of a select few. Especially since you couldn’t take any photos inside. For example you could buy anything with Goya’s drowning dog image – by why the heck would I want a bookmark with a drowning dog on it!? The prices were also a bit ridiculous, I wanted to buy a folder for my mum – just a clear plastic one with an image on it – it was 5 euros!
Overall the museum is a great place to visit when it’s boiling hot outside. I liked it, but wouldn’t spend too much time. Especially since I’m more interested in Ancient History than the middle ages/ renaissance. Although my friend travelling with me is going back tomorrow for the entire day – so it really depends on your likes and dislikes!