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Prado Museum Tour: A Guided Crash Course with Skip-the-Line Tickets

Decipher the visual delights of one of the world’s greatest art museums
From US$150 for 1 person
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Tour Details
3 hours
Product Type
Prado Museum
Photos & Highlights
  • See highlights of the Prado Museum, including Bosch and Goya, with skip-the-line tickets
  • Led by a professional art historian
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Tour Description
During this 3 hour Prado Museum tour with skip-the-line tickets, we will explore the Prado Museum, famous not only for works by such major Spanish artists as Velazquez and Goya, but also for a wide range of Flemish, Italian, and French art–representative of the far reach and influence of the Spanish Empire. Under the tutelage of an art history expert, we’ll gain a broad, contextual understanding of this exciting collection while visiting some of the most significant paintings in one of the world’s greatest art museums. Our Prado Museum tour is offered daily for both small groups and private tours.

Interested in further exploration of Madrid's art museums? We recommend our Private Thyssen Museum tour.
  • Prado Museum
  • 3 hours with a Ph.D. or MA-level expert
  • Skip-the-line tickets
    • Please Note: Our team will pre-purchase timed admission tickets on behalf of your party. However, due to enhanced COVID-19 safety precautions at this venue, there will be a mandatory security line which we must wait in together. 
We’ll begin our tour by looking at the paintings that once formed part of the private collections of Spanish monarchs. These works are the initial core of the Prado Museum and account for the presence of such masterpieces as The Garden of Earthly Delights by Hieronymus Bosch and The Descent from the Cross by Roger van der Weyden, two of the most important paintings in the Prado. Next, we'll turn our attention to the advent of the Habsburg dynasty in Spain. Brought upon by Charles V, who, along with his son Philip II, became prominent patrons of Venetian artists, chiefly Titian. We may dwell for a while with this artist's powerful portraits of both regents. We’ll also discuss how a fascination with Italy—specifically Venice—infused the work of Velazquez, whom King Philip IV (grandson of Philip II) sent to Italy in order to acquire paintings.

Next we’ll look at Rubens, who sojourned at the court in Madrid and who provides a unique contrast to Velazquez, in particular Velazquez's famous Las Meninas. We'll finish in the Goya rooms, where we can review the relationships between artists and their royal patrons as we study such works as The Family of Charles IV. We'll conclude with a deep appreciation for the variety of masterpieces contained within the Prado, and how this museum serves as a capsule of European history from the Renaissance to modernity

What are skip-the-line tickets?
For this tour, your tickets are pre-purchased which allows you to skip the ticket office line upon arrival at the museum. You may still have to wait in a security line or in a line to have your pre-purchased ticket scanned.   

Is this tour wheelchair-accessible?
The museum is accessible to wheelchairs with the exception of certain areas connected to the Villanueva building due to its design. Please contact us to discuss in more detail your mobility concerns so that we can best advise.

There are 7 or more people in my group but your website won't allow me to include more than 6 participants. Can't you make an exception?
No, unfortunately due to venue reservation restrictions we cannot accommodate groups larger than 6 people. If your group is larger, we recommend you split into multiple groups.
Where You'll Start
430 Reviews (4.88)

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We are lucky enough to have been able to experience many guided tours over the years. I would say that Context Travel ranks near the top. They were very timely in their communications and flexible to meet our needs. The guide, Carlos, was very knowledgeable, spoke great English and was nice enough to send us a follow-up email with ideas on restuarants and other places we should visit.
This was an excellent introduction to the Prado collection itself, and to the antecedents and contemporaries of the great Spanish painters.
Carlos exceeded our expectations on this Prado tour. He showed us highlights in great detail, drawing our attention to things we never would have seen otherwise. His ability to link painters with royalty and the political events of the eight centuries represented in the museum illuminated our visit. Instead of leaving the Prado, as we thought we might, overwhelmed and exhausted, we left with a richer understanding of Spanish art history. Carlos paid great attention to our needs through the three hour tour, making sure we were comfortable, navigating us through a massive building with ease and confidence. His attitude and enthusiasm made the tour a real pleasure.