Open-air cinema has become a must-do summer activity in most cities around the world and Madrid is full of options for catching your favorite movie under the stars. From intimate rooftop settings to historical courtyards and giant American-style drive ins, here are our picks for the best outdoor cinema locations in Madrid.
Channel your favorite Grease character and head to Madrid’s drive-in cinema Autocine Madrid Race that is reportedly the biggest in Europe and set against the twinkling Madrid skyline. You don’t even need your own car to attend as they’ve partnered with local car sharing company Uneeqo so you can borrow the vehicle of your choice by the hour at a discounted price. Alternatively you can turn up sin coche and take a seat in the deckchairs or Balinese style beds at the front. You can make an evening of it as there are food trucks on site to feed you that will also deliver burgers, hotdogs and other classic American diner-style treats to your car if you pre-order. They’re showing some of the latest releases in the next few weeks such as The Secret Life of Pets 2 and Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw.
Calle de la Isla de Java, 2
Photo credits: Influenzia marketing, Flickr
This summertime cinema venue is a great option for when it rains, as even though you can see the stars above you, you’re not technically outside. It takes place in the grandiose glass roofed courtyard of the magnificent Palacio de Cibeles (Cybele Palace). Film buffs will delight in the diverse roster of films on show. There’s something for everyone from cult classics such as Labyrinth and Edward Scissorhands to current blockbuster movies A Star is Born and the much-talked-about remake of Disney’s The Lion King. Go early for a drink in the lively bar area and check out the adjoining Pop Legends exhibition by Spanish graphic design artist Flore Maquin that celebrates cinematic legends in a pop art style. Runs until September 12.
Galería de Cristal de Centro Centro, Plaza de Cibeles 1
If you’d prefer to watch a movie from a scenic rooftop, Madrid’s Casa Encendida cultural center has transformed its leafy roof terrace known as the ‘Magnetic Terrace’ into one of the best open-air cinema settings in the city. Movie screenings take places every Saturday and live music performances every Sunday. This year's program that includes both Spanish and international films is themed around the language of comics in alliance with Casa Encendida’s current exhibition Modern Vices that features Spanish artist and illustrator Ceesepe's work. Must-see movies include Pepi, Luci, Bom and Other Girls like Mom by Pedro Almodóvar that Ceesepe designed the poster for and also has a role in, and A Scanner Darkly by Richard Linklater. Runs until September 1.
Ronda de Valencia, 2
This cinema festival takes places in the verdant Parque de la Bombilla in the Moncloa district of Madrid. There are two screens showing 100 movies over the course of the summer. Most movies start at 10pm and on weekends they show another late night movie at midnight. The program includes hot releases from 2019 such as Rocketman and Bohemian Rhapsody as well as some new Spanish movies. Runs until September 8.
Av. de Valladolid
The patio of the Centro Cultural Conde Duque de Madrid has also set up a giant screen in the open air projecting a mix of the latest film releases, some old classics, interesting documentaries as well as some special sing-a-long events on the weekend that combine movie screenings of popular musicals with live singing and dancing, including everyone’s favorite Grease, The Rocky Horror Picture Show and Dirty Dancing. There are morning, matinee and evening showings as well as acoustic concerts, DJ sessions, chill-out areas, beer gardens, markets and food trucks to keep you amused for the rest of the summer. Runs until September 7.
Calle del Conde Duque, 11
Been to any other great outdoor cinemas in Madrid? Tell us what you though about them in the comments section below.