Madrid is a great metropolis that has done a great job in preserving the look of its historic buildings. But it is also a city with lots of greenery, charming parks and and peaceful gardens where you can take a stroll, relax, play sports, or participate in leisure activities.
The most emblematic of Madrid's parks is El Retiro, with more than 125 hectares and 15,000 trees, some of which are centuries old. For instance, the famous Bald Cypress is the oldest tree in the capital from nearly 400 years ago. With origins documented since the time of the Catholic monarchs, this park is not only a great lung of the city, but the centre of culture, entertainment and sport. The notable monuments at El Retiro include the grand Estanque, el Palacio de Velázquez, and el Palacio de Cristal.
Despite the enormity of El Retiro, the prize for the largest park in Madrid has to go to la Casa de Campo, a huge wooded area of about 1,723 hectares. la Casa de Campo is home to various leisure facilities such as an amusement park, a zoo and the cable car.