Madrid is home to many famous world-class museums. And visiting them does not have to break the bank. You have probably heard about the famous Reina Sofia museum in Madrid, where you can find many of Picasso’s famous paintings. Did you know you can visit it during specific hours for free? In fact, there are many free museums in Madrid or museums that you can visit for free during certain hours. Apart from that, I also included museums that offer free entrance on Sundays. It will make it easier for you to plan your stay in Madrid. This list contains many different museums in Madrid that do not charge entrance- from art museums, and cultural museums to modern museums with awesome innovative content!
So let’s jump right into it: Here are 25 free museums in Madrid that will absolutely blow your mind!
Affiliate links may be sprinkled throughout the free content of this blog post. If you purchase from one of the links I may receive a small commission while the price for you stays the same. This helps me cover the costs of The Lithuanian Abroad. Gracias!
Other blog posts about Madrid you should not miss:
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104 cheap things to do in Madrid: This blog post includes the best free and cheap activities you can do in Madrid in order to save money and visit Madrid’s most impressive places.
The ultimate Madrid bucket list for first-time visitors: This post includes an incredible bucket list for visiting Madrid. I made sure to include the most important museums, monuments, and fun activities.
Things to do in Madrid at night that aren’t just partying: This blog post includes all kinds of activities you can do in Madrid at night. From Flamenco Shows to night tours and bars. There is something for every kind of traveler!
Do a free walking tour in Madrid!
I love doing a free walking tour every time I visit a new city for the first time. They are truly the best way to learn about a new place in only one afternoon. My boyfriend and I usually do one of these tours on the first day of our visit to really get to know a place better. The best part about free walking tours are the local guides that do a great job at showing you the city from the eyes of a person that lives there.
So how do free walking tours work? Free walking tours do not come with a set price, so they are free. You will spend a couple of hours with your local guide exploring Madrid. You can ask questions about recommendations and things to do. After the tour, you have the chance to leave your local guide a tip. And how much you would like to tip them is completely up to you. Usually, it depends on your budget and on how much you liked the tour.
You can find all free walking tours in Madrid here.
Facts about museums in Madrid:
Many museums in Madrid close on Mondays
A very important thing to know when planning your trip to Madrid: Many museums close on Mondays because they do open on Sundays. The good news is that you can still go to museums during the whole weekend, but make sure to double-check whether the museum you would like to visit on Monday is open.
For example, the Museum of the History of Madrid and the Joaquín Sorolla Museum close on Mondays.
Many museums in Madrid offer free entrance on national holidays
This means that many museums offer free entry on the 12th of October (National Day of Spain), the 18th of May (International Museum Day), and the 6th of December (Day of the Constitution).
Arrive at least 30min before closing time
You should arrive at the museums at least 30min before their closing time. I would recommend arriving even earlier in case you have to queue.
Let’s start: A list with ALL free museums in Madrid
Museums in Madrid that are completely free:
Museo de Historia de Madrid
This museum located on Calle Fuencarral in the neighborhood of Malasaña is completely dedicated to the history of Madrid. It takes you on a journey from the 15th century, when Madrid became the capital of Spain, to the 20th century. The collection includes paintings, sculptures, and old maps of Madrid.
Address: Calle Fuencarral 78
Opening Hours: Tuesday-Sunday 10 am-8 pm, closed on Mondays!
This cultural center was founded by the Spanish telecommunication company “Teléfonica” and always hosts the coolest exhibitions. Since they are very interactive and modern I would recommend this place for children or families.
Entrance is free, but you need to book your entrance beforehand here.
Address: Calle de Fuencarral, 3
Opening Hours: 10 am-8 pm, closed on Mondays!
Museo Geominero (One of my favorite free museums in Madrid!)
This museum is one of my favorite museums in Madrid! It has a huge collection of minerals, gemstones, and fossils of Spain and its former colonies. Currently, you can only access the first floor of the building (which is absolutely beautiful!) but it’s still worth checking out.
Address: Calle de Ríos Rosas, 23
Opening Hours: Monday- Sunday 9 am-2 pm
Casa Museo Lope de Vega
This museum is the house where the famous Spanish writer Lope de Vega used to live in. It was bought by him in 1610 and he lived there for the last 25 years of his life. Today it is a museum where you can see his reconstructed flat.
The entrance is free, but you have to book a guided tour before via call, e-mail, or accessing the museum. They offer guided tours in Spanish, English, Italian, and French.
Address: Calle de Cervantes, 11
Opening Hours: Tuesday-Sunday 10 am-6 pm, closed on Mondays
Are you interested in learning about the history of the Spanish Navy? Then this museum is perfect. The Museo Naval is the perfect place for learning about Spain’s colonies, past rulers, old Spanish ships, and much more.
Address: Paseo del Prado, 3
Opening Hours: Tuesday-Sunday 10 am-7 pm, closed on Mondays
El Matadero is an old slaughterhouse in the South of Madrid right next to the metro stop of Legazpi. Today it is a center dedicated to contemporary art and culture. They offer contemporary art exhibitions that are very interactive. I promise you, you won’t be bored!
Address: Plaza de Legazpi, 8
Opening Hours: Monday-Sunday 9 am-10 pm
Museo de Arte Contemporaneo
Are you a fan of contemporary art? Then the Museum of Contemporary Art in Madrid is your place to go. It is located in the neighborhood of Malasaña. Two big rooms show the modern art collection of the city council in Madrid. This collection includes sculptures, drawings, paintings, and sketches.
Address: Calle del Conde Duque, 9
Opening Hours: Tuesday- Friday 10 am-2 pm & 3 pm-9 pm, Saturday 10 am-2 pm & 3 pm-9 pm, Sunday 10.30 am-2.30 pm, closed on Mondays
This museum is located in a building from the 19th century that used to be a brewery. It shows the art collection of the Spanish newspaper ABC which includes more than 200.000 drawings, sketches, and photographs.
Address: Calle de Amaniel, 29
Opening Hours: ABC Museo is Temporarily closed!
Panteón de Hombres Ilustres
The Pantheon of Illustrious Men is an architectural complex in the South of Madrid. You can see the tombs of former prime ministers and other famous Spanish figures. The highlight of the complex are six individual mausoleums of famous Spanish figures from the 19th and 20th centuries.
Address: Calle Julián Gayarre, 3
Opening Hours: Tuesday-Saturday 10 am-2 pm & 4 pm-6.30 pm, Sunday 10 am-3 pm, closed on Mondays
The city council of Madrid is not just another boring building. It is also a cultural center, called CentroCentro, that offers temporary exhibitions related to Madrid, urban planning, architecture, and design. The entrance to the exhibitions is free and for 3€ you can go up to the rooftop terrace to enjoy one of the best views of Madrid.
Address: Plazade la Cibeles, 1
Opening Hours: Tuesday-Sunday 10am-8pm, closed on Mondays
The Palacio Velazquéz is an art museum located right in the center of the beautiful Palacio de Cristal in Retiro Park. It hosts temporary modern art exhibitions. And what I love most about this place: They are usually very interactive and sometimes even quite bizarre! If you are already at the park, make sure to check out this place as well.
Address: El Retiro Park, Paseo de Venezuela, 2
Opening Hours: Monday-Sunday 11 am-6 pm
Museums in Madrid you can visit for free on certain days or time slots
Don’t stop reading! The list has not ended yet 😉 Let’s continue with museums you can access for free in Madrid during certain hours or days. This will be a game-changer if you visit Madrid when the weather is bad or you do not want to spend a lot of money on visiting museums. Let’s jump right into it!
Museo de la Reina Sofia
The Reina Sofia Museum is one of the most visited art museums worldwide, and also one of the most important museums in Madrid. The highlight of the museum is Picasso’s painting “Guernica“. Did you know that you can access this museum for free if you go during the last two opening hours?
Address: Calle de Santa Isabel, 52
Free Entrance: Monday, Wednesday-Sunday 6-8 pm, Sunday 1.30 pm-2.30 pm
If you cannot make it during that time you can book your ticket here. I would absolutely recommend going to the Reina Sofia Museum in Madrid. I was speechless when I saw Picasso’s ‘Guernica’ painting for the first time. I have learned about it in school but seeing it was a completely different experience. It was much bigger than I expected and you can find so many details in it. Absolutely incredible!
Museo del Prado
The Prado Museum offers a fine art collection of European art. Apart from Spanish artists like Goya and Picasso, you will also find art from international artists like Albrecht Dürer. The most famous paintings in the Prado Museum include ‘Las Meninas’ by Spanish artist Velazqués. Entrance is free during the last two opening hours as well.
Address: Calle de Ruiz de Alarcón, 23
Free Entrance: Monday-Saturday 6pm-8pm, Sunday 5pm-7pm
If you cannot make it during that time you can book your ticket here.
Together with the Prado and the Reina Sofia Museum, the Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum forms the “Golden Triangle of Art” in Madrid. With more than 1600 paintings it was once the second-largest private art collection worldwide.
Address: Paseo del Prado 8
Free Entrance: You can visit the permanent collection for free on Mondays from 12 pm-4 pm
If you cannot make it during that time you can book your ticket here. I would recommend visiting the Thyssen Museum if you are not a huge art fan, but still would like to go to an amazing museum in Madrid. I have heard from so many people that this is their favorite museum in Madrid.
Museo Nacional de Artes Decorativas
This is one of the oldest museums in Spain. And the first museum in Spain was dedicated entirely to decorative arts, from glass to furniture or even ceramics from the city of Toledo.
Address: Calle de Montalbán, 12
Free Entrance: Thursday afternoon, Saturday from 2-3 pm, Sundays
Museo de Lazaro Galdiano
Lazaro Galdiano was a Spanish businessman and art collector. You can see his HUGE art collection, which contains art from Spanish artists like Goya as well as international artists like Lucas Cranach. His house looks like a huge villa and is even more impressive on the inside.
Address: Calle Serrano, 122
Free Entrance: Tuesday-Sunday from 2-3 pm
Surprise! Did you know you can visit the Royal Palace of Madrid for free? Find out how the Royals of Madrid used to live and look at all kinds of different rooms in the Royal Palace. Did you know it is almost twice as big as Buckingham Palace?
Address: C. de Bailén
Free Entrance: Monday to Thursday, from 4 pm to 6 pm (October to March) and from 5 pm to 7 pm (April to September)
If you cannot make it during that time, you can buy your tickets, which include fast access, here. That way you can also skip the ridiculous queue of people waiting to enter. To me, the Royal Palace of Madrid is a MUST in Madrid. You will be able to visit so many different rooms, like the former dressing room of Carlos III. My favorite must be the porcelain room. It is a room that is completely covered in Porcelain from China with so many details.
Museo Nacional de Antropología
The National Anthropology Museum in Madrid is the oldest Anthropology museum in Spain and was inaugurated in 1875. It has an African Hall, an Asian Hall, and an American Hall where it educated its visitors about Indigenous Cultures and Spanish former colonies.
Address: Calle de Alfonso XII, 68
Free Entrance: Saturdays from 2pm-10-3pm
Museo de Joaquín Sorolla
Joaquín Sorolla was a famous Spanish painter in the 19th century. It is one of the best-preserved homes of an artist in Europe. Apart from his paintings and personal belongings, you can also admire the beautiful garden that he designed himself. A true treasure of Madrid.
Address: Paseo del General Martínez Campos, 37
Free Entrance: Saturdays from 2pm-8pm, Sundays from 10am-3pm
Museo de las Américas
The Museum of the Americas shows prehistoric and pre-Colombian pieces. It shows a lot of Spanish history from Colonial Times with an emphasis on indigenous culture. A very educational museum that you must visit in Madrid!
Address: Avenida de los Reyes Católicos, 6
Free Entrance: Thursdays 2 pm – 7 pm, Sundays 10 am – 3 pm
Museo Arqueológico Nacional
One of the most interesting museums in Madrid! The National Archaeological Museum takes you on a journey through Spain’s history from prehistoric times all the way to the 19th century. Apart from that, it also shows Greek and Egyptian pieces in its collection.
Address: Calle de Serrano, 13
Free Entrance: Saturdays from 2-8 pm, Sundays from 9.30 am-3 pm
This museum lets you have a look into a gorgeous villa of the 19th century and shows the collection of Spanish archaeologist Enrique de Aguilera y Gamboa. You will be able to admire old furniture, paintings and the highlight of the museum: A huge chandelier.
Address: Callede Ventura Rodríguez, 17
Free Entrance: Thursdays from 5 pm-8 pm, Sundays 10 am-3 pm
Palacio de Liria
A true hidden gem in Madrid. This museum belongs to the “Alba” family of Spain, which is one of the oldest noble Spanish families. This museum shows their private art collection. But not only that, this museum is a MUST in Madrid because of its beautiful interior that looks like a fairytale.
Address: Calle de la Princesa, 20
Free Entrance: There are two timeslots on Mondays where you can visit the museum for free. You have to make a reservation one week in advance here. (Every Monday at 12:00 noon the next Monday become available.)
Museo de Romantisicmo
This museum shows you paintings, furniture, and other objects from the Romantic Area. And not only that, there are paintings from the Spanish artist Goya as well! Apart from that, the museum gives you insights about important topics from that time: from hygiene to technological developments.
Address: Calle de San Mateo, 13
Free Entrance: Saturdays 2 pm – 6:30 pm/8:30 pm (November to April/May to October), and Sundays 10 am – 3 pm.
Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando
This museum has an unbelievable collection of 1400 paintings from famous painters like Goya, Sorolla or El Greco. To continue, 15.000 drawings and 600 sculptures. Their collection also includes silverware and porcelain artworks.
Address: Calle de Alcalá, 13
Free Entrance: Wednesdays
Those were 25 free museums in Madrid!
Wow! What a list! While I was researching all kinds of free museums in Madrid I even found a couple of museums I have never been to. So they are going directly on my bucket list. What is your favorite museum in Madrid? Let me know in the comments below.