Top Most Visited Museums in Spain – Mus3ums

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Spain

Spain ), officially the Kingdom of Spain , is a country in Southwestern Europe with some pockets of territory across the Strait of Gibraltar and the Atlantic Ocean. Its continental European territory is situated on the Iberian Peninsula. Its territory also includes two archipelagos: the Canary Islands off the coast of North Africa, and the Balearic Islands in the Mediterranean Sea. The African enclaves of Ceuta, Melilla, and Peñón de Vélez de la Gomera, makes Spain the only European country to have a physical border with an African country . Several small islands in the Alboran Sea are also part of Spanish territory. The country's mainland is bordered to the south and east by the Mediterranean Sea except for a small land boundary with Gibraltar; to the north and northeast by France, Andorra, and the Bay of Biscay; and to the west and northwest by Portugal and the Atlantic Ocean respectively. With an area of 505,990 km2 , Spain is the largest country in Southern Europe, the second-largest country in Western Europe and the European Union, and the fourth-largest country by area on the European continent. With a population exceeding 47.3 million, Spain is the sixth-most populous country in Europe, and the fourth-most populous country in the European Union. Spain's capital and largest city is Madrid; other major urban areas include Barcelona, Valencia, Seville, Zaragoza, Málaga, and Bilbao. Modern humans first arrived in the Iberian Peninsula around 35,000 years ago. Iberian cultures along with ancient Phoenician, Greek, Celtic and Carthaginian settlements developed on the peninsula until it came under Roman rule around 200 BC, after which the region was named Hispania, based on the earlier Phoenician name Spn or Spania. At the end of the Western Roman Empire, Germanic tribal confederations migrated from Central Europe, invaded the Iberian peninsula and established relatively independent realms in its western provinces. One of them, the Visigoths, forcibly integrated all remaining independent territories in the peninsula, including the Byzantine province of Spania, into the Visigothic Kingdom. In the early eighth century the Visigothic Kingdom was conquered by the Umayyad Islamic Caliphate. The Muslim rule in the Iberian Peninsula soon became autonomous from Baghdad. A handful of small Christian pockets in the north were left out of Muslim rule, along the presence of the Carolingian Empire near the Pyrenées, eventually led to the emergence of the Christian kingdoms of León, Castile, Aragon, Portugal and Navarre. Over seven centuries, an intermittent southwards expansion of these kingdoms culminated with the Christian seizure of the last Muslim polity in 1492, the same year Christopher Columbus arrived in the New World. A process of political conglomeration among the Christian kingdoms also ensued, and the late 15th-century saw the dynastic union of Castile and Aragon under the Catholic Monarchs, sometimes considered to be the emergence of Spain as a unified country. The Conquest of Navarre occurred in 1512, while the Kingdom of Portugal was also ruled by the Hapsburg Dynasty between 1580 and 1640. In the early modern period, Spain ruled one of the largest empires in history which was also one of the first global empires, spawning a large cultural and linguistic legacy that includes over 570 million Hispanophones, making Spanish the world's second-most spoken native language, after Mandarin Chinese. Spain hosts the world's third-largest number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Spain is a secular parliamentary democracy and a parliamentary monarchy, with King Felipe VI as head of state. It is a major developed country and a high income country, with the world's fourteenth-largest economy by nominal GDP and the sixteenth-largest by PPP. It is a member of the United Nations , the European Union , the Eurozone, the Council of Europe , the Organization of Ibero-American States , the Union for the Mediterranean, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization , the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development , Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe , the Schengen Area, the World Trade Organization and many other international organisations. While not an official member, Spain has a "Permanent Invitation" to the G20 summits, participating in every summit, which makes it a de facto member of the group.

Museo del Prado

Madrid metropolitan area

The Prado Museum , officially known as Museo Nacional del Prado, is the main Spanish national art museum, located in central Madrid. It is widely considered to have one of the world's finest collections of European art, dating from the 12th century to the early 20th century, based on the former Spanish Royal Collection, and the single best collection of Spanish art. Founded as a museum of paintings and sculpture in 1819, it also contains important collections of other types of works. The Prado Museum is one of the most visited sites in the world, and it is considered one of the greatest art museums in the world. The numerous works by Francisco Goya, the single most extensively represented artist, as well as by Hieronymus Bosch, El Greco, Peter Paul Rubens, Titian, and Diego Velázquez, are some of the highlights of the collection. The collection currently comprises around 8,200 drawings, 7,600 paintings, 4,800 prints, and 1,000 sculptures, in addition to many other works of art and historic documents. As of 2012, the museum displayed about 1,300 works in the main buildings, while around 3,100 works were on temporary loan to various museums and official institutions. The remainder were in storage. The museum received 2.8 million visitors in 2012. It is one of the largest museums in Spain. The best-known work on display at the museum is Las Meninas by Velázquez. Velázquez and his keen eye and sensibility were also responsible for bringing much of the museum's fine collection of Italian masters to Spain, now the largest outside Italy.

Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum

Madrid metropolitan area

The Thyssen-Bornemisza National Museum , named after its founder), or simply the Thyssen, is an art museum in Madrid, Spain, located near the Prado Museum on one of the city's main boulevards. It is known as part of the "Golden Triangle of Art", which also includes the Prado and the Reina Sofia national galleries. The Thyssen-Bornemisza fills the historical gaps in its counterparts' collections: in the Prado's case this includes Italian primitives and works from the English, Dutch and German schools, while in the case of the Reina Sofia it concerns Impressionists, Expressionists, and European and American paintings from the 20th century. With over 1,600 paintings, it was once the second largest private collection in the world after the British Royal Collection. A competition was held to house the core of the collection in 1987–88 after Baron Thyssen, having unsuccessfully sought permission to enlarge his Museum in Lugano , searched for a better-suited location elsewhere in Europe.

Museu Nacional d'Art de Catalunya

Barcelona

The Museu Nacional d'Art de Catalunya , abbreviated as MNAC, is the national museum of Catalan visual art located in Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain. Situated on Montjuïc hill at the end of Avinguda de la Reina Maria Cristina, near Pl Espanya, the museum is especially notable for its outstanding collection of romanesque church paintings, and for Catalan art and design from the late 19th and early 20th centuries, including modernisme and noucentisme. The museum is housed in the Palau Nacional, a huge, Italian-style building dating to 1929. The Palau Nacional, which has housed the Museu d'Art de Catalunya since 1934, was declared a national museum in 1990 under the Museums Law passed by the Catalan Government. That same year, a thorough renovation process was launched to refurbish the site, based on plans drawn up by the architects Gae Aulenti and Enric Steegmann, who were later joined in the undertaking by Josep Benedito. The Oval Hall was reopened in 1992 on the occasion of the Olympic Games, and the various collections were installed and opened over the period from 1995 to 2004. The Museu Nacional d'Art de Catalunya was officially inaugurated on 16 December 2004. It is one of the largest museums in Spain.

Bilbao Fine Arts Museum

Basque Country (autonomous community)

The Bilbao Fine Arts Museum is an art museum located in the city of Bilbao, Spain. The building of the museum is located entirely inside the city's Doña Casilda Iturrizar park. It is the second largest and most visited museum in the Basque Country, after the Bilbao Guggenheim Museum and one of the richest Spanish museums outside Madrid. It houses a valuable and quite comprehensive collection of Basque, Spanish and European art from the Middle Ages to contemporary, including paintings by old masters like El Greco, Cranach, Murillo, Goya, Van Dyck, Ruisdael and Bellotto, together with 19th century and modern: Sorolla, Mary Cassatt, Paul Gauguin, Henri Le Sidaner, James Ensor, Peter Blake, Francis Bacon and Richard Serra.

Museu de Belles Arts de València

Valencian Community

The Museu de Belles Arts de València is an art gallery in Valencia, Spain, founded in 1913. It houses some 2,000 works, most dating from the 14th–17th centuries, including a Self portrait of Diego Velázquez, a St. John the Baptist by El Greco, Goya's Playing Children, Gonzalo Pérez's Altarpiece of Sts. Ursula, Martin and Antony and a Madonna with Writing Child and Bishop by the Italian Renaissance master Pinturicchio. It houses a large series of engravings by Giovan Battista Piranesi. The museum is in the St. Pius V Palace, built in the 17th–18th centuries. It has also sections dedicated to sculpture, to contemporary art and to archaeological findings.

El Greco Museum, Toledo

Castilla–La Mancha

The El Greco Museum is located in Toledo, Spain. It celebrates the mannerist painter El Greco , who spent much of his life in Toledo, having been born in Fodele, Crete.

Toledo Cathedral

Castilla–La Mancha

The Primate Cathedral of Saint Mary of Toledo , otherwise Toledo Cathedral, is a Roman Catholic church in Toledo, Spain. It is the seat of the Metropolitan Archdiocese of Toledo. The cathedral of Toledo is one of the three 13th-century High Gothic cathedrals in Spain and is considered, in the opinion of some authorities, to be the magnum opus of the Gothic style in Spain. It was begun in 1226 under the rule of Ferdinand III and the last Gothic contributions were made in the 15th century when, in 1493, the vaults of the central nave were finished during the time of the Catholic Monarchs. It was modeled after the Bourges Cathedral, although its five naves plan is a consequence of the constructors' intention to cover all of the sacred space of the former city mosque with the cathedral, and of the former sahn with the cloister. It also combines some characteristics of the Mudéjar style, mainly in the cloister, with the presence of multifoiled arches in the triforium. The spectacular incorporation of light and the structural achievements of the ambulatory vaults are some of its more remarkable aspects. It is built with white limestone from the quarries of Olihuelas, near Toledo. It is popularly known as Dives Toletana .

Hospital de Tavera

Castilla–La Mancha

The Hospital de Tavera, also known as the Hospital de San Juan Bautista, Hospital de afuera, or simply as Hospital Tavera, is an important Building of Renaissance style that is in the Spanish city of Toledo. It was built between 1541 and 1603 by order of the Cardinal Tavera. This hospital is dedicated to John the Baptist and also served as pantheon for its patron, Cardinal Tavera. Initially it began to be constructed under the supervision of Alonso de Covarrubias, being succeeded by other architects and finishing the work Bartolomé Bustamante. The remoteness with the old part of the city made it known as el hospital de afuera, since within the walls there already existed the Hospital de Santa Cruz. Currently the building remains the property of the House of Medinaceli and inside it is the Museo Fundación Lerma, which houses part of the artistic collections of this lineage, as well as the Section of the Nobility of the National Historic Archive.

Museo Nacional de Escultura, Valladolid

Valladolid

The Museo Nacional de San Gregorio is a museum in Valladolid, Spain, belonging to the Spanish Ministry of Culture. The museum has an extensive collection sculptural ranging from the Middle Ages to the 19th century from Region of Castile's churches that, at 19th-20th c., these were confiscated, and other particular donations, deposits or acquisitions of the state. The museum was founded as the Provincial Museum of Fine Arts on 4 October 1842. It had its first headquarters at the Palacio de Santa Cruz. On 29 April 1933 it was moved to the Colegio de San Gregorio. Other current seats are in the 16th-century Palacio de Villena and Palacio del Conde de Gondomar The museum houses works from the 13th to 19th centuries, executed mostly in the Central Spain, and also in other regions historically connected to Spain . Artworks include, among the others, a Raising of the Cross by Francisco del Rincon, I Thirst, and The Way of Calvary Gregorio Fernández, Adoration of the Magi by Alonso Berruguete, Lamentation of Christ by Juan de Juni, Penitent Magdalene by Pedro de Mena or the Holy Sepulchre or passage of the Sleepers Alonso de Rozas. During the Holy Week in Valladolid the museum gives 104 images to the processions for the brotherhoods.