Nihan makes Christmas plans in Madrid

Hi, how are you?

I couldn’t be more excited, my first months in Madrid have been amazing. Whenever I go out in the city and I find places that catch my attention, I write them down in the notes on my phone to recommend them to you.

I wanted to have written here before, but I haven’t had much time. I don’t know if you know it, but at AIL Madrid we are moving to a bigger building and that’s why all the staff is helping with the move.

Plans of ChristmasOf course, when I leave work I have a lot of time to discover the city and make the best plans in Madrid. Since I arrived in the capital to work as an intern at AIL Madrid, I have discovered many amazing places: the Plaza Mayor, the rooftop of the Circulo de Bellas Artes or the Rastro.  Besides, you already know that I love fashion and beauty, so I adore shopping in Gran Vía and visiting the Zara in Plaza de España, which is the biggest in the world.

As you can guess, I couldn’t be more excited to have decided to do my university internship in Madrid. In addition to practicing Spanish all day with my coworkers, I am also attending an intensive Spanish course at the C1 level.

What I like most about studying Spanish here is that I get to meet new people to hang out with in Madrid and make “guiris” plans.  Christmas is not celebrated in Turkey since a large part of the population is Muslim, but since my mother’s family does celebrate it, I am excited about the decorations in the city and all the Christmas markets.

Madrid during WinterLast Thursday, November 24, the illumination of the lights in the center of Madrid began. Of course, I had this date well marked on my calendar and I was there on the same day of the inauguration. I didn’t go alone, I went with my partner Maria, who is the opposite of the Christmas Grinch, and we had a great time!

The buildings in the center of Madrid are even more beautiful illuminated, I looked for some pictures on the internet to give you an idea, although you know it’s much better to see it live than in pictures.

This week I have planned to go with my Spanish classmates to see the Christmas market in Plaza Mayor. I’ve seen on Tiktok that a lot of people are buying wigs and tacky glasses and taking super fun pictures. You know I have an influencer spirit so I’ll be taking pictures and documenting my experience all day.

Another activity on my list is going to see a nativity scene*. Andrea, who works in the school’s coordination department, told me that in her house it’s a tradition to set up a nativity scene and DIY the buildings of the city of Bethlehem, they even make the rivers with blue gel to make it more realistic. I think it’s amazing!

Lights for ChristmasAh! Speaking of things to do, I have to keep trying roscones de Reyes. You can’t imagine how delicious they are, I’m a real fan of this sweet. Plus, it comes with a surprise inside the roscón and a cardboard crown for you to wear if you’re the lucky one who gets it. It also comes with a bean and according to tradition, whoever gets it, has to pay for the roscón. I’m crossing my fingers that I don’t get it!

What do you think of my plans for these weeks?

Don’t worry, I’ll keep telling you more in the next blog and if you want me to tell you something curious about Madrid, don’t hesitate to tell me in the comments. I sound like a real instagramer, don’t you think? Give me time, I’ll become one!

See you next time!


Belén: it’s pretty complicated to explain, but basically it’s some sculptures of the Virgin Mary, St. Joseph, Jesus, the mule and the ox in the manger where the birth took place. I know it’s a bit difficult to understand, so I leave you this page to become an expert in the history of Christmas.

Nihan Yilmaz

Merhaba ¡Hola! Me llamo Nihan y soy mitad colombiana y mitad turca. Después de terminar mis estudios, he venido a Madrid para hacer unas prácticas y mejorar mi español. No puedo esperar para hacer mil planes en la capital. Desde ir a un karaoke hasta ir a la Fashion Week, estoy emocionadísima y tengo claro que voy a quemar la ciudad.

Leave a Reply