Puerta de Alcala Madrid Guide
Madrid is a city with few instantaneously recognisable monuments when compared to other European capitals but if Madrid needed an icon, the Puerta de Alcala would probably be it. The three-arched monument was once the eastern gateway into the city and today is still one of the first recognisable features for travellers who arrive into the capital by bus or from the airport. The Puerta de Alcala was commissioned Carlos III in 1778 as a grand entrance to the royal city but the monument also bares the scares of Madrid’s turbulent history in the form of damage from cannon shrapnel from the civil war. The monument is worth visiting both during the day and night when it is dramatically illuminated.
Tourist Information for the Puerta de Alcala Madrid
The Puerta de Alcala is located on the eastern side of central Madrid on the Calle de Alcala the main east/west artery of the cit. The monument is by the main entrance to the Retiro Park and one block east from the Fountain of Cibeles. The closest metro station is Retiro and as the monument is in the centre of a major roundabout there is no entrance fee.
Puerta de Alcala Madrid Further Information
The Puerta de Alcala was built slight to the north of the original gate which was positioned on the main road from the centre of Madrid (Puerta del Sol) to the town of Alcala and the east of Spain. The gate was one of five each constructed on the edge of the capital on the main roads leading from the Puerta del Sol. Charles III of Spain constructed the Puerta de Alcala as he was appalled by the dismal entrance to his new capital for which he had abdicate from his beloved Naples and Sicily. In 1774 Charles commissioned the almost unheard of architect Francesco Sabatini to design a grand new entrance to the city.