Madrid is well established as one of Europe’s top cities for nightlife. While it has plenty of rivals, the party in the Spanish capital goes on later than anywhere else on the continent. An average Friday or Saturday night out for Madridlenos doesn’t really get going to well past midnight and most discotecas are still packed at 6am. Even on weekdays bars and clubs are full of life well into the early hours of the morning.
Chueca is the centre of the action for Madrid’s gay community and although it caters for various tastes, some of the bars here are extremely lively and certainly not for the faint-hearted. For a relatively small district, Chueca boasts a ridiculous amount of nightlife options. Strolling between the various cafes and bars before hitting one of the clubs is a popular way to spend an evening but there are a few that should not be missed.
Black and White has been around for decades and was partly responsible for the emergence of Chueca as the centre of gay life in the city. Nightly cabaret shows and various themed parties set the tone here and it tends to attract a young but varied crowd.
If you’re in Madrid during the week, a good option is Polana, a club which opens till 5am every night. Meanwhile nearby La Bohemia and Vendetta tend to gear themselves more towards girls.
It’s not all about Chueca however and there are good nights out to be had all over Madrid. Close to Sol you will find nightclubs such as Ohm and Why Not which have regular gay nights and generally cater to a happy open-minded crowd. Further out of town you will find giant mega-clubs such as Fabrik that attract literally thousands of party-goers every weekend.
There are several other neighbourhoods that are also well worth checking out. If you’re near Plaza Mayor you won’t struggle for things to do, with various theatres and bars among your options whilst street performers and stalls often line the nearby streets. Lavapies is an up and coming urban district home to some cheap galleries and underground bars that have their own unique flavour. Meanwhile Tribunal also boasts some trendy nightspots and is more popular with the locals than the touristy central area. An evening hopping between the numerous Tapas bars in the area is a relaxed and very Spanish way to spend an evening.
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