October 29, 2018
Halloween in Madrid

Halloween in Madrid

October 29, 2018
Halloween plaza mayor catrina mexico Madrid spain
How to celebrate Halloween in Madrid or maybe I should say Día de los Muertos? You see, up until a few years ago Halloween was just a foreign festivity for us. Traditionally, the 1st of November is the Day of the Dead (Día de los Difuntos) and that's what we celebrate in Spain but nowadays Halloween is everywhere... As an ESL teacher I have to teach my students about it, but I'm not fond of it. I don't like zombies, graveyards or anything of the sort. However, there are some interesting activities going on in Madrid that I want to tell you about.
Halloween mexico catrina plaza mayor Madrid spain
Halloween mexico spain plaza mayor catrina Madrid
Today's post is about Halloween related events all around Madrid but first of all I want to tell you about the two different traditions.

Halloween vs First of November

As I said, what we celebrate here is Día de todos los Santos or Día de los Difuntos which takes place the day after Halloween. On this day, we honor those who have passed on. People visit cemeteries and leave flowers on the graves of loved ones. Later in the day families gather and have traditional sweets like huesos de santo (bone-shaped marzipan) and panellets (made from almond and pine nuts).

Those who celebrate Halloween here have kept the scariest side of it. I've seen Halloween in Ireland and California while I was living there and I remember seeing people dressing up in both scary and non-scary costumes whereas in Spain you will see most people dressed up as something dead or horrific. That's probably because we have another festivity to dress up Carnaval (carnival). Trick or treating is not very popular but more and more kids are doing it every year.
Halloween Madrid Spain catrina plaza mayor mexico
Halloween Madrid Spain plaza mayor catrina mexico

How to celebrate Halloween in Madrid

Personally, I'm going to make these delicious chocolate peanut butter bars and watch a movie -but not a horror one- with my husband at home. Now, I know that some of you feel like me about Halloween but others love it so here you will find something for everyone.
  • Casa de Mexico in Madrid was inaugurated in October 2018 and they promoted it with these beautiful sculptures of Catrinas, an icon of the Mexican Día de Muertos, in Plaza Mayor. Let's see what they have in store for us this year! You can also visit Casa de Mexico -they also did a wonderful job decorating the building- to see the altar and check out their activities for Halloween this year. Casa de Mexico is in Calle Alberto Aguilera, 20.
  • My favorite healthy restaurant, Elektra offers a Halloween themed girls night out plan: manicure, cocktail and cake for 15€ from 7pm to 10pm on the 31st. Reservations: +34 912 54 59 11.
  • Dinner +  Escape Room with Enigmatium Room. The game starts during the meal where you have to find answers to some questions which will be the clues to leave the room. You have to be quick, you only get 60 minutes.
  • See Madrid in a different way with a ghost tour: La Noche de los Espíritus. Find out about murders, haunted places and paranormal activity in different palaces, manors and streets of the city.
  • If you don't mind leaving the city, Warner Bros Park offers lots of Halloween activities until November 3 including scar zones and terrifying passages. Parque de Atracciones and the Madrid Zoo will also be hosting multiple Halloween themed events.
  • Día de los Muertos (day of the death) in Palacio de Linares. A housekeeper, a butler and a marquis will guide you in this nocturnal visit to a magnificent 19th century palace. An hour of mystery, secrets and legends told by characters coming from the afterlife. The palace is actually believed to be haunted and the dramatized visit takes place the first Saturday of every month all year round -apart from the Halloween special performance- and it's totally worth it. I went with some friends a few months ago and we had so much fun!
  • Time Out suggests visiting these abandoned historical buildings which sounds like a great plan.
  • Go on a photography tour. Well, this one is my own suggestion. I took these photos walking around Madrid searching for Halloween decor. Taking my camera and exploring the city is one of my favorite things to do. Madrid has so much to offer for photography lovers! 
Halloween Madrid Spain Casa Mexico
Halloween Casa de Mexico Madrid Spain
Halloween Casa Mexico Madrid Spain

Halloween Casa Mexico Madrid Spain
Halloween Casa Mexico Madrid Spain
Now tell me, how are you celebrating Halloween?


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October 22, 2018
Best Photo Locations in NYC for First-Time Visitors

Best Photo Locations in NYC for First-Time Visitors

October 22, 2018
yellow cab street photography nyc
It's been almost ten years since the first time I visited New York. It was back in 2009 and I spent a few days there before going to my final destination: my au-pair year in San Francisco. The city that never sleeps stole my heart. I especially loved the architecture (and the shopping!). The place is heaven for any photographer. NYC has so many picture perfect spots you will need several memory cards during your stay.

New York is an incredible city to explore. There are so many things to see and do that it can be quite daunting when you visit it for the first time. The second time I visited was a year later and I got to experience it much more than the first one as it was known territory. Once again, it took my breath away. Every time you visit the city is different and the word "boring" disappears from your vocabulary while you are there. You can bump into celebrities or walk into a movie set at any moment. New York should be in everybody's bucket list. You simply cannot love it.

So how can you make the most of NYC photography? Let's see some tips together with 25+ photos that will give you serious wanderlust.m&m store nyc
New York is a very popular place for tourists and photographers alike so be prepared to wait at picture perfect locations to get your shot. The most beautiful photos are taken at golden hour or blue hour but if you want to have the place to yourself you are going to have to wake up at the crack of dawn and get there before everybody else.
squirrel central park new york city
architecture nyc water deposit
petrossian nyc architecture
belvedere castle central park nyc
Visit the museums. You can't miss the Guggenheim, the MOMA or the MET.
guggenheim museum new york
architecture building upper east side nyc
Designer fashion shops are spectacular. Walk around 5th Avenue and also go to SoHo. Photography inside is generally forbidden but some of them have impressive facades too.
apple store nyc central park 5th avenue
louis vuitton store 5th avenue nyc
architecture nyc skyline
chrysler building architecture nyc
If you have enough time, visit one of the other boroughs like Harlem. It's so different from Manhattan but equally impressive. I had the chance of attending a Gospel mass in Harlem and it's and experience I will never forget.
harlem borough new york
street photography NYC yellow cab
liberty truck nyc street photography
Get lost in Central Park. It has so many beautiful photo opportunities! There are so many things to photograph there: the people, the Bethesda Fountain or the romantic Bow Bridge! How dreamy it would be to do a photo shoot there with the first rays of light... The Loeb Boathouse is also a beautiful place to photograph and to eat, I had an amazing meal there.
bow bridge central park summer nyc
School bus NYC
Remember John Lennon at the Dakota. This New York landmark was his home until his murder in the archway of the building in 1980.dakota building nyc central park imagine
america flag empire state building nyc
The statue of Atlas carrying the heavens in front of the Rockefeller center is one of the most impressive photos you can get.
Atlas heavens Rockefeller center
new york architecture
Empire State Building
New York peer Lower Manhattan
Photograph touristy spots from a different angle like beautiful Lady Liberty below.
statue liberty nyc
seagull peer nyc black white
New York Stock Exchange wall street
ground zero memorial nyc
The Brooklyn Bridge is a true New York icon, from there you can see all the major New York City Buildings like the Chrysler or the Empire State buildings. Speaking of the Empire State, make panoramas when you are on the top. The views of the city are jaw-dropping.
Brooklyn Bridge nyc
Views Brooklyn Bridge NYC
Capture the most vibrant colors (and eat great pasta!) at Little Italy.
Little Italy Manhattan NYC
architecture nyc black white
Photograph the Flatiron building from all the possible angles. Did you know that its name comes from its resemblance to a cast-iron clothes iron?flatiron building nyc
view empire state building nyc
The iconic hotels. The Plaza, The Palace and the Waldorf Astoria must be in your pics. They are too pricey for most of us but you can always go in and take a peek to see how beautiful they are inside.
Plaza Hotel New York
Unconditional Surrender kiss sculpture NYC
For night time photography go to Times Square. The screen contrasts with the darkness and that equals amazing photos.
times square night nyc
Whether it's day or night, you must stop at Grand Central Terminal. How many movies can you name that have been set there?
Tip: a long exposure is needed inside the station to capture your perfect shot.
grand central terminal station night new york
If you go to Brooklyn you can get a beautiful view of the Washington Bridge from a place called DUMBO (Down Under Manhattan Bridge Overpass). Right now this is one of the most popular instagrammable spots in New York City.

When in New York...put on your walking shoes, charge your camera batteries, empty your memory cards and set off on the amazing adventure that is visiting New York City.


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Two Traveling Texans