Souvenirs Shopping Tour (Self Guided), Madrid

It would be a pity to leave Madrid without having explored its specialty shops and bringing home something truly original. We've compiled a list of gifts and souvenirs, which are unique to Madrid, that a visitor might like to purchase to reflect their visit. Take this self-guided shopping tour to hunt for your perfect souvenir.
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Souvenirs Shopping Tour Map

Guide Name: Souvenirs Shopping Tour
Guide Location: Spain » Madrid (See other walking tours in Madrid)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 6
Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.2 Km or 0.7 Miles
Author: Daniel
Sight(s) Featured in This Guide:
  • Casa Hernanz
  • Gritos de Madrid
  • La Favorita
  • Borca
  • Casa de Diego
  • La Violeta
1
Casa Hernanz

1) Casa Hernanz

Come spring time, the line outside of Casa Hernanz stretches far out the door. Spaniards and tourists alike gather to stock up on Spain’s favorite summer shoe – the alpargata. Made of rope and cloth, the shoes form a staple of Spanish summer attire, particularly at the beach.

Apart from the appealing bohemian look, they come in 32 colors, from candy-apple red to lime green and lavender purple. And even better, the price is oh-so-right starting at only a few euros a pair. Considering that they only last about a season, locals usually stock up yearly, purchasing a slew of their favorite colors.

While you can find them in various locations, the world-famous shop, Casa Hernanz, sits behind Plaza Mayor (Main Square), where it has made its mark in the shoe world for over a century and a half. If you are buying for someone back home, just be sure to come prepared with your European shoe size and those of friends back home.

What to buy here: Alpargatas.

Opening Hours: Monday-Friday, 9am-1:30pm and 4:30pm-8pm; Saturdays: 10am-2pm.
2
Gritos de Madrid

2) Gritos de Madrid

Most people probably fall into two categories when it comes to thimble collecting: they love the idea, or they think it’s silly. You might believe you belong to that latter group until you see the ornately handmade thimbles at Gritos in Plaza Mayor (Main Square).

While most tourist shops sell poorly made, even cheesy thimbles to the masses, Gritos sells true collectors’ items, ranging from commemorative to customized. Fancy a certain animal? Most likely they have a it for you. Obsessed with a cartoon character? They’ll probably have that too.

Amongst the hundreds of porcelain, ceramic and metal miniatures, you’ll undoubtedly find one that speaks to you - much to your surprise. And since the shop is located in the heart of Plaza Mayor (Main Square), it’s worth a stop by just to take a look. They’re cute, they’re cheap, and most likely at least one person in your family would absolutely love one.

What to buy here: Thimbles. Price: 2 euros - 50 euros.

Opening hours: Monday-Friday: 10am-2pm, 4:30pm-8pm; Saturday: 10am-2pm.
3
La Favorita

3) La Favorita

Wandering the Madrid streets, you might discover that many Spanish grandpas share one thing in common – their hats. While most Spanish men below the age of 50 are very unlikely to sport such a head piece, foreigners might be a bit more daring.

Find your own Spanish hat (for your grandpa, dad, or even yourself), at La Favorita, the oldest hat shop in Madrid. In La Favorita's Plaza Mayor (Main Square) shop, founded in 1894 and family-run, you can find gorras (messenger caps), proper sombreros (straw hats), as well as boinas (more or less what we might call a beret).

The gorras are more commonly worn during the cold winter months, while the sombreros are a popular summer choice. So if a flamenco outfit, fan or embroidered shawl doesn’t seem like quite the right gift for Dad, now you know just what to get him.

What to buy here: Spanish men's hats. Price: 4 euros - 158 euros.

Opening Hours: Monday-Saturday: 12:00 - 24:00; Sunday: closed.
4
Borca

4) Borca

There’s something romantic and extravagant about an elaborately embroidered shawl. Called mantones de manila, the traditional Spanish shawl gets its name from the port in the Philippines where the Spanish colony exchanged goods from the Far East (despite the fact that the item was actually made in China).

First popular in Southern Spain, the garment, known for its intricate embroidery, originally gained fame among flamenco dancers and even mainstream use in everyday life throughout the nation. These days, while shawls remain a flamenco staple, they are not a daily fashion accessory and instead only reserved for more formal occasions.

What to buy here: Shawls. Price: 49 euros - 2500 euros.

Opening hours: Monday-Friday: 10am-1:45pm, 4:30pm-8pm; Saturday: 10am-1:45pm.
5
Casa de Diego

5) Casa de Diego

The shops that infest the tourist traps of Madrid are littered with fans of all shapes, sizes and colors. The selection may be large, but the quality is probably low. So what if you are looking for something more authentic?

Stop by Casa de Diego in Puerto del Sol where three generations of family continue to make and sell traditional Spanish fans. Flowers, lace, ornately painted images – they’ve got every kind of fan imaginable, all made right there in the store in central Madrid.
If authenticity isn’t your thing and instead you are more interested in quantity or price, your best and most economical bet is Madrid’s famous outdoor market, the Rastro. Each Sunday, in the famous La Latina neighborhood, the winding raucous streets turn into a bustling market. There, you can bargain your way to fan happiness. They may not be as fancy, but with basic fans costing around 2€, it might make for a more suitable gift for your long list of people to shop for.

What to buy here: Spanish Fans. Price: from 12 euros to 2000+ euros.

Opening hours: Monday-Friday: 9am-1:30pm, 4:30pm-8pm; Saturday: 10am-2pm.
6
La Violeta

6) La Violeta

Almost 100 years ago, the shop La Violeta opened its doors, selling a selection of candies and other treats. After several years, one of its signature items reigned supreme – las violetas.

Nowadays, that same shop is run by the family’s third generation and still sells the same famous Madrid treats that have been a source of success for the last century. There, you can pick from a wide selection of quantities and containers, which they will wrap up for you and adorn with - what else - a purple ribbon.

Nostalgic Madrilenos recall their childhood at the taste of one of these famous candies, and gift-givers know a box of them will always be warmly received. The little sweets, purple and in the shape of their namesake flower, are made with flower essence and therefore have the slightest floral flavor. Their small size, flowery design and dainty packaging make them an ideal gift from Madrid. .

What to buy here: Violetas. Price: boxes starting at 5 euros

Opening hours: Monday-Saturday: 10am-2pm and 4:30pm-8:30pm.

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