Capital of Spain (since 1561) and of the Autonomous Community, it is the largest and most populated city in the country (3,293,601 inhabitants at 1 January 2011). As the state capital, Madrid is home to the seats of government, the Parliament, ministries and institutions, as well as theresidence of the King and Queen of Spain.
It is an influential cultural centre and has museums of international importance. The group of Madrid museums located in the area near the Paseo del Prado and the Part of El Retiro is referred to as the Art Triangle or the Golden Triangle. The three points of the triangle are the Prado Museum, the Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum and the Museo Reina Sofía. The nerve centre of Madrid is the Puerta del Sol. It contains the point known as kilometre zero, opposite the Royal Post Office. This is the point from where all the radial roads in the country set off.