Top 10 Day Trips from Madrid
If you have visitors who have already been here to Madrid a few times or will be staying for a week or more, you’ll probably want to start taking them on some day trips. Here are a few of the best places to visit right outside Madrid:
1. San Lorenzo de El Escorial: This monastery/palace/mausoleum has been described as the “eighth wonder of the world.” You and your visitors can easily spend an entire day exploring this architectural masterpiece. This impressive monastery-palace was built by Phillip II in the late 1500s and it is believed to the the burial site of the Spanish monarchy.You can take a trip to El Escorial as well as the valley of the Fallen, which will include:
- Air-conditioned motorcoach
- Multilingual official guide: tour guaranteed in English and Spanish
- Entrance to the Royal Monastery of El Escorial
- Entrance to the Valley of the Fallen and the Basilica
2. Toledo: Your guests will enjoy escaping the hustle and bustle of Madrid , to wander through the narrow streets of this ancient town. Be sure to take them to its impressive cathedral. Toledo is a picture-perfect medieval town recognized for a peaceful coexistence between Christians, Muslims and Jews. Moreover, it is a UNESCO Heritage site and the home to the paintings of world renowned´s El Greco.
3. Segovia: Just a short trip from Madrid, Segovia is famous for its Roman aqueduct and its well-preserved Alcázar castle.Get there in an air-conditioned motor coach with multilingual tour guides .The tickets also include entrances to the Convent, Museum of Teresa de Jesús, Plaza Mayor, Basilica of San Vicente, the Cathedral in Segovia and the Alcázar castle.
4. Chinchón: This picturesque village is known for its iconic Plaza Mayor, where bullfights have been held since at least the 16th century. If you go there, be sure to try their local anisette and all the liquorish-flavored pastries.
5. Aranjuez: If you take your guests to see the Royal Palace in this beautiful town, you might end up spending the entire day just wandering around its royal gardens. The over 740 acres of gardens inspired Joaquín Rodrigo to compose the Concierto de Aranjuez.
6. Alcalá De Henares: The birthplace of Miguel de Cervantes, this university town hosts an interesting museum dedicated to this great writer. The stunning architecture of the university of Alcalá De Henares is definitely worth seeing.
7. Manzanares el Real: This quaint village, just a 45-minute drive from Madrid, is home to a lovely 15th-century castle—Castillo de los Mendoza—where a Medieval festival is held every spring. It offers fantastic views of the Guadarrama mountain range. Take your visitors on a hike through nearby Pedriza park to see magnificent granite rock formations.
8. Palacio de El Pardo: This Royal Palace was first built as a hunting lodge, but is today a magnificent monument. Goya made some of the tapestries on display there.
9. Buitrago de Lozoya: A visit to this village, just 75 km north of Madrid, will make you feel like you’ve traveled back in time. Buitrago de Lozoya still preserves the 11th century wall that surrounds it. While there, you must check out its stunning Gothic-Mudéjar style Castle and its Picasso Museum, full of artifacts that Picasso’s barber collected.
10. Ávila: The walled city of Ávila is home to Spain’s oldest gothic church. You can climb the city’s walls to get a great view of the surrounding plains.
What are your favorite day trips from Madrid? Let us know!