El Buen Retiro Park is a group of historic, artistic gardens that were created in the 17th century. Also known as El Retiro Park, it is one of the main attractions in Madrid’s city centre, as shown by the joint candidacy of Paseo del Prado and El Retiro Park as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
It is the largest green space in the city centre covering 125 hectares and with a huge wealth and diversity of landscapes, created over the different historic periods. Among the garden areas and ponds, of note are:
- El Retiro Lake
- The French-style Parterre garden
- The Campo Grande landscaped garden
- The Cecilio Rodríguez gardens, with their trimmed cypresses, boxwood hedges and pergolas.
- The Rose Garden, an oval-shaped area with 4000 rose bushes planted along symmetrical paths and parterres, with a central pond and two fountains.
- The Planteles gardens, square areas of small woods with hedged borders.
- The Bosque del Recuerdo, a monument built in memory of the 191 victims of the Madrid bombings on 11 March 2004.
Among the most important architectural and historic elements are:
- The Velázquez Palace, built in 1883 in red brick covered with iron and glass vaults that provide natural light to the interior which is used as an exhibition room by the Reina Sofía Museum.
- The Glass Palace, one of the best examples of the so-called iron architecture, also used for exhibitions by the Reina Sofía Museum.
- The Ángel Caído statue, the only sculpture in the world representing the devil.
- The monument to Alfonso XII, a set of sculptures dedicated to the king, with a viewpoint and beautiful views.
- The Galapagos fountain, commemorating the birth of Queen Isabella II.
- The Private Gardens of King Ferdinand VII.
The filming permits to shoot on the public parks and gardens of the city of Madrid are managed by the Filming Authorization Bureau. For more information on these permits and how to process them, read the How to film in Madrid page.
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