Madrid to Zaragoza
Travel from Madrid to Zaragoza by train is easy from Madrid Atocha Station. The train station boasts excellent high-speed AVE train links to connect Madrid to Zaragoza Station. On any given day you’ll find around twenty daily direct services and the journey takes around 1 hour and 15 minutes. And because Zaragoza Station is located close to the city centre, you’ll be in the heart of the city in no time!
For more information on taking the high-speed AVE service from Madrid, see our guide to departing on the AVE from Madrid Atocha Station. But if you’d rather reach Zaragoza with the convenience of your own car, see our Madrid Atocha car rental guides. Many car hire suppliers also offer one-way rentals within Spain, which is worth considering if you’d rather start and finish your trip in a different location.
Best in Zaragoza Travel
Zaragoza (also referred to as Saragossa) is the stunning capital of the Aragon region in northern Spain. The Basilica de Nuestra Señora de Pilar is one of the standout attractions in the city. The multi-domed and multi-towered Baroque church provides the city’s sense of grandeur. To see it at its best, head to Balcon de San Lazaro on the north bank of the River Ebro. It’s located just east of the Puente de Piedra, an old stone bridge that is also a good place to capture the church and the city. Along with the Basilica de Nuestra Señora de Pilar and river, the Puente de Piedra is integral to capturing this classic Zaragoza scene. You can enjoy great views from the Balcon de San Lazaro at any time of day but it’s best at sunset or twilight. Another amazing viewpoint of the city is actually from the Basilica itself. When you visit, make sure you also head up the north north tower by lift for more spectacular views of the domes and city.
The city is full of historical and architectural highlights. The old town (Casco Viejo) is home to many of them, which include the Cathedral and the ruins of a Roman Theatre. About 2kms west of the old town, the Aljaferia is another standout attraction. It gives visitors an insight into the city’s Islamic past. Cultural highlights in the city include the Goya Museum and Caesaraugusta Theatre Museum, which are both in the old town.
Best time to visit
Like many cities across Spain, Zaragoza enjoys a good fiesta. Two of the best times to visit include Easter week and the El Pilar Fiestas in October. If you’re planning to visit at either time, book your accommodation in advance as things get booked up quickly.
Best beyond Zaragoza
Zaragoza is also a good jumping off point for exploring more of the Aragon region. Highlights around Zaragoza include Cinco Villas, a series of 5 small medieval villages, and Tarazona with its Mudejar architecture. Both are around an hour’s drive from Zaragoza. Other picturesque villages that are worth a visit include Belchite, Uncastillo and Albarracin. There are also some wonderful natural landscapes around Zaragoza. Dehesa del Moncayo, Las Bardenas and Ordesa y Monte Perdido are three fantastic places to enjoy the great outdoors.
10kms west of the city, Zaragoza Airport is the nearest airport. In addition to hosting a number of domestic flights, international routes include London, Brussels and Bucharest.