The historic Calle Gran Vía, a notable street and urban esplanade, is a main artery within central Madrid and is lined with remarkable architecture, shopping, dining and entertainment options. Running nearly a mile in length, the Gran Vía travels from Calle de Alcalá on the east, near the Plaza de Cibeles, to the Plaza de España on the west. Along the street, you’ll find a large number of notable buildings and examples of period architectural styles, famous plazas and public artwork.

As a major thoroughfare in Madrid, the Calle Gran Vía is travelled by visitors of all ages as they traverse the city. Whether you’re quickly passing through on your way to another location in Madrid or you’re heading to one of the attractions along the street, this historic area is worth visiting. The Calle Gran Vía can easily be reached via bus, car and metro.

Calle Gran Vía in Madrid - one of the highlights of 15 Best Things to Do in Madrid and 5 Best Shopping Streets in Madrid (Read all about Madrid here)

What are the highlights of Calle Gran Vía in Madrid?

Some of Madrid’s most historic city landmarks can be found along the Calle Gran Vía. The Metrópolis Building towering over the beginning of Gran Vía is known for its sweeping neo-renaissance facade, Corinthian columns and opulent gold details. The Telefónica Building dates back to 1930 and was once Europe’s tallest building as well as being the location of the first transatlantic telephone call from Spain.

Additional landmarks along the Calle Gran Vía include the Madrid Casino, a historic building that today houses a fine-dining restaurant. The Capitol Building, also known as Edificio Carrión, is a 20th-century Art Deco building that towers 14 storeys above the Gran Vía. One of Spain’s most famous movie theatres is located here, the Cines Callao, which has hosted a large number of historic premiers and events since its opening in 1926.

Foto de Jean-Pierre Dalbéra (CC BY 2.0) modificada

Shopping and dining along the Calle Gran Vía

Calle Gran Vía is one of the busiest streets in Madrid, serving as an open-air shopping mall housing a diverse collection of retail destinations. The Gran Vía offers 3 main shopping sections, with the first extending from the Calle Alcalá to Red de San Luis, a second from the Red de San Luis to Callao, and a third section from the Callao to Plaza de España. Within those shopping sections, you’ll find everything from boutique clothing shops and handmade goods to sportswear, jewellery, home decor, and luxury brands.

Dining options are also plentiful along the Calle Gran Vía in Madrid. Casual and fine-dining options along the street range from gourmet Spanish tapas and fusion cuisines to authentic Italian, American fare, and classic pub food.

Good to know when visiting Madrid’s Calle Gran Vía

The Calle Gran Vía in Madrid is both pedestrian- and cyclist-friendly, offering wide pavements and a dedicated bike lane. This popular street remains well-lit at night and offers benches, crosswalks and tree-lined avenues. As it's a lively part of Madrid’s nightlife, you’ll find that many of the street's bars, restaurants and entertainment destinations remain open late into the evening.

The Calle Gran Vía’s central location in the heart of Madrid makes it easy to incorporate into your visit to the city. If you’re driving, parking is available in paid car parks and parking garages on and around the street. City buses also travel along the Calle Gran Vía across several bus lines. Metro stops for the Calle Gran Vía include Banco de España, Callao, Gran Vía, Plaza de España and Santo Domingo. Locals recommend using public transport to reach the street, as parking can be limited along this popular thoroughfare.

Calle Gran Vía in Madrid