The Royal Botanic Garden is part of the Spanish National Reseach Council (CSIC) and has a long history spanning more than 260 years. It is located in the historic center of Madrid within walking distance to the world-famous Prado, Thyssen-Bornemisza, and Reina Sofia art museums. Many hotel options in the vicinity make the Garden a convenient place to host a conference like this one. Close by there are many subway and bus stations, Madrid´s main train station Atocha Renfe, and different options for travel to and from the Adolfo Suarez Madrid-Barajas International Airport. More information on directions to the RGB can be found below.
We are in one of the main touristic areas of Madrid, and it is impossible to get any discount for conferences from nearby hotels. For those of you with really tight budgets, much cheaper accommodations can be found in cities situated East and South of Madrid, as access to Atocha train station is easy and fast, taking no more than 20′ to commute (Alcorcón, Fuenlabrada, Getafe, Leganés, Torrejón de Ardoz, or Vicálvaro). Of course, you would like to be near the Royal Botanic Garden to take advantage of the its privileged situation to enjoy Madrid life; the usual webpages to book accommodations are the best choice to get good deals.
Some hotels next to the Garden are:
Hotel Radisson**** Calle Moratin 52 Plaza de Platerias de Martínez 28014 www.radissonblu.com/es/pradohotel-madrid
NH Madrid Nacional**** Paseo del Prado, 48, 28014 www.nh-hoteles.es/NH-Hoteles
Hotel Paseo del Arte**** Calle Atocha 123, 28014 www.hotelpaseodelartemadrid.com
Catalonia Atocha**** Atocha, 81, 28012 www.hoteles-catalonia.com/es/
NH Madrid Atocha*** Paseo Infanta Isabel, 9, 28014 www.nh-hoteles.es/NH-Hoteles
Hotel Mora** Paseo del Prado, 32, 28014 www.hotelmora.com
Access to the conference
The entrance to the conference will be located on Claudio Moyano 1 St. This entrance is used exclusively by delegates, staff and visiting researchers. This is not to be confused with the entrance for general public visiting the Garden, located in Plaza de Murillo 2, 28014 Madrid.
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How to arrive
Paseo del Prado: lines 10, 14, 27, 34, 37, 45
Plaza del Emperador Carlos V: lines 6, 19, 26, 32, 59, 85, 86, C1, C2
Plaza de Cibeles: lines 1, 2, 3, 5, 9, 15, 20, 51, 52, 53, 74, 146, 150, 202
Commuting trains (cercanías) to Atocha Renfe Station
Line C-3 Chamartín / Aranjuez
Line C-4 Chamartín/ Parla, estación Atocha
Line C-5 Móstoles del Doto / Atocha / Fuenlabrada / Humanes
Line C-8 Atocha / Villalba
Line C-8a Atocha / El Escorial
Line C-8b Atocha / Cercedilla
Line C-10 Villalba / P.Pío / Atocha / Chamartín / Tres Cantos
Line 1: Pinar de Chamartín/Valdecarros, Atocha and Atocha Renfe stations
Line 2: Cuatro Caminos/La Elipa, Banco de España station
We do not recommend to come in your own vehicle. Madrid has now enforced restrictions to private vehicles and can be a living hell to move (if you are lucky to move) around. However, if you prefer to come by car you must know that the Royal Botanical Garden does not have parking service. The closer public parkings are:
Atocha Station, Plaza Emperador Carlos V s/n, 28012 Madrid
Plaza Cortes, Plaza Cortes, 5 28014 Madrid
Temperatures in Madrid are already hot in early July, with an average of 25º and a mean minimum of 19º. Depending on the year, and on the presence or not of hot waves coming from the heart of Sahara desert, nights can be a problem because of high temperatures, although most homes, and of course all hotels, are air-conditioned. In July no rain is expected, although there may be localized storms. If you go to the excursion to Gredos, you should know that the temperature in the summits can be quite less than in Madrid, and that the probability of storms is much higher.
Tips regarding Spanish customs
The Spanish way of life entails a daily schedule different from most other countries. In general, breakfast is a light meal, while lunch is the main meal of the day, typically a big meal eaten anywhere from 2-4 pm. Dinner is eaten late, anywhere past 9 pm, and it is a smaller meal. Because of this food schedule, businesses and especially restaurants close later at night and might open later in the morning than most of you are used to.
The food schedule at the conference will follow a pattern more similar to a mid-day lunch and earlier dinner than the Spanish schedule. Check the schedule for any specific questions you may have about meal timing.
Spanish food is great, so enjoy it and do not avoid anything. You could carry on your diet later. Vegetarian restaurants are easy to find, but strictly vegan are a rarity. There are many restaurant options in Madrid and it is possible to find the type of food you are looking for!
Personal space and greeting
In Spain, people tolerate, and often feel more comfortable, with short interpersonal distances and greater physical contact, contrary to what usually happens in North America, northern Europe and Asia. Do not be surprised if in a normal conversation your partner touches your arm or shoulder; it means nothing more than it is a pleasant conversation.
It´s the custom in Spain to greet someone with two cheek-kisses, depending on the level of professionalism you have with the person you´re greeting. Shaking hands is more common among men and in more formal settings. Don´t worry about greeting someone the “right” way, just don´t be surprised if they go in for two kisses!