The following article is published in the #RGNNMadrid Magazine: Vol. III, Summer 2017, produced during ROOSTERGNN Academy’s Travel Journalism & Photography Internship Seminar in Madrid, Spain, under the editorial direction of RGNN Expert and Mentor Natalia Martín Cantero. Follow #RGNNMadrid for all of our Madrid coverage.

When planning a vacation somewhere foreign, one of the first questions you ask is what the budget will be for the trip.

There are two main budgets people can stick to when traveling to not only Madrid, Spain, but to other cities and countries as well.

The two main budgets have a range to do multiple activities per day, and will allow tourists in Madrid to see as much of the city as possible, without going over their budget.

The first budget is a low-end budget, with a range of 50-100 euros per day.  This budget is most common for young travelers.  These travelers are oftentimes students trying to gain real world experience.

The second budget is a median budget of 100-150 euros per day.  This budget may be relevant for young travelers as well as travelers who have saved up for a vacation, and do not need to pinch pennies as much.

However, it is sometimes hard to fit in everything you want to do within a specific budget.

When you are on a budget, you don’t want to feel like you are wasting your money on good but not great food, or feel like you’re spending too much time trying to figure out where to go and what to see.

View from El Retiro park | Kaitlyn Norris

This guide will help tourists in Madrid decide what to do, where to eat, and what to see, all while staying within their budget when visiting Madrid.

Beginning with the first budget, staying in a hostel will allow the most spending money to do other things around the city.  One of the most popular hostels for young travelers is The Hat.

As the first boutique hostel in Madrid, this hostel is thriving with travelers from all over the world looking for cheaper accommodations in order to save money.  The Hat costs 19 euros per night which leaves between 30-80 euros to spend throughout                                                                                                                      the day.

“I don’t mind staying in a lower end place in order to save money to do things I want instead of being worried about going over budget, at the Hat, they offer all the accommodations a hotel would,” 23 year old American tourist Amanda Gillman said.

When traveling, costs of food add up quickly, but there are many places to go to get quality food at a low price.

“I like to experience the culture through a city’s’ food, therefore I try to stick to local places which tend to be cheaper as well,” 26-year-old British student Robert Adkins.

For breakfast, a good place to go to experience a traditional Spanish treat of churros with chocolate would be Chocolateria San Gines. With 6 churros and chocolate costing 3.80 euros, this is a good way to start the day like a true Spaniard while not breaking the bank.

For lunch a good place to go to get true Spanish food is Mercado San Miguel.  This indoor market is a good place to get out of the strong Spanish sun and grab a quality bite to eat.

With options ranging from tapas, traditional Spanish jamon, and various drink options, you can spend about 10 euro on a sandwich, caña, and maybe a small dessert.

For dinner, a restaurant to go to that is not very expensive is Ojala in Malasaña.  This restaurant has good selection of international foods and a wide variety of drinks.

The ambiance of Ojala is supposed to remind visitors of the beach with sand on their basement floor and low to the floor tables.  A normal dinner and drink costs around 10-15 euros.

ABC Museo | Kaitlyn Norris

In addition to places to eat, a tourist still needs things to do during the day.  There are many free things to do in Madrid that will never leave you feeling bored.

The Museum of Contemporary Art and ABC Museum in Malasaña, Museo del Prado, and Centro de Arte Reina Sofia, all offer free entry.

You can visit one museum a day, or multiple.

El Retiro park boats | Kaitlyn Norris

Retiro Park is also a great place to enjoy the locals and see all the different cultures of Madrid come together.

Later in the day, Temple of Debod which is free to go, is a beautiful place to watch the sunset.  You can bring friends and food and watch the sunset which makes for some great Instagram pictures.

The second budget of 100-150 euros per day allows a little more room for doing things that cost an entrance fee.

For accommodations, renting an Airbnb is a low cost alternative to a hotel.  Many times, the Airbnb will be apartment style, which is good for longer stays in Madrid.  Most Airbnb’s in Madrid range from                                                                                                                              50-60 euros per night.

For breakfast, there are a lot of nice brunch places to visit.  One recommendation would be Mur Cafe in Malasana.  There are various options for brunch including traditional English breakfast, or more of a Spanish style breakfast.  Their prices range from 10-15 euros a plate.

To keep yourself busy throughout the day, one thing to do would be to visit the Caixaforum in Atocha.  There are various exhibits ranging from film to ancient Greek art.  The entrance fee is 4 euros, which includes every exhibit.

El Jardin Secreto | Kaitlyn Norris

For lunch, a good place to go would be El Jardin Secreto.  This hidden restaurant is boasting with plants and color.  It is a very popular spot for tourists because of how photogenic it is.  Plates of food and drinks range from 20-30 euros.

Since the budget is higher, this leaves room for seeing a show or going somewhere special.

A flamenco show is a great Spanish experience.  Many shows offer food, drinks, and the show for 35-50 euros.

If there is money left in the budget for tapas and drinks, a great late night rooftop bar is Carrera de San Jeronimo.  This rooftop restaurant offers great views of Madrid at night.

Traveling within a certain budget is difficult, however, there is plenty to do in Madrid no matter your budget.