Segovia is the jewel in the crown of Central Spain and home to three of its most incredible attractions: a magnificent Roman Aqueduct, a jaw-dropping gothic cathedral, and a medieval castle so beautiful it was used as the inspiration for Cinderella’s castle by Walt Disney. This exciting day trip from Madrid with private transport takes you inside of all three with guided visits and features a bonus visit to El Escorial - the ancestral home of Spain’s Monarchs.
You’ll meet your guide and a small group of 19 fellow travelers in central Madrid, where you’ll hop on a private, air-conditioned minibus headed to Segovia. In just over an hour, you’ll be passing under the medieval city walls and entering the stunning Alcázar, a medieval castle that will be familiar to anyone who likes Disney movies. Here you’ll enjoy a full tour of the castle and learn about the ancient dynasties that built it.
Strolling through the narrow streets of the old Jewish Quarter, you’ll arrive at the Segovia Cathedral, one of the finest examples of gothic architecture in Europe. Your guide will show you the most interesting parts, like a full-sized wooden sculpture of Christ, then take you on a short city stroll through the winding streets of Segovia, passing the lovely Church of San Martín and the bizarre facade of the Casa de Los Picos. Your destination is the city’s titanic Roman Aqueduct. This nearly 2,000-year-old watercourse is one of the finest surviving Roman aqueducts in the world and you’ll enjoy an amazing view of it from our favorite viewpoint while learning about the history of Roman conquest in the Iberian Peninsula.
After a lunch break with plenty of recommendations from your guide, you’ll hop back in the bus and head to El Escorial, the one-time residence of the kings of Spain. Part monastery, part immense, opulent palace, you’ll explore some of its most impressive rooms while learning how the building was willed into existence by the Catholic Church, a visionary king, and a flood of gold from the Americas. The highlight of the visit is seeing the Pantheon of the Kings, an enormous chamber holding the coffins of 26 kings and queens from the Habsburg and Bourbon dynasties, and learning about the burial practices of European royals.
Your tour lasts 1.5 hours and includes the basilica and the private apartments of the royals. Then you’ll hop back in the bus for the hour-long drive back to Madrid.
Segovia and El Escorial are two of the most beautiful and history-rich attractions in Spain. This day trip lets you explore it without worrying about any of the logistics.
San Martin (outside)
Casa de Los Picos
Roman Aqueduct viewpoint
El Escorial Royal Palace:
Basilica & royal chapel
Royal Tombs (Pantheon of the Kings)
Royal Apartments & bedroom of King Philip II (where he died)