11 Mar, 2024 @ 13:04
2 mins read

Must-visit: These 5 ‘low-cost’ escapes all within an hour from Madrid – according to a leading Spanish newspaper

TRAVELLING on a budget? Try these ‘low cost’ escapes all within an hour of the Spanish capital. 

Puebla de la Sierra 

The romantic streets of Puebla de la Sierra. Photo: Sierra Norte de Madrid

A pretty town found in the Sierra del Rincon, Puebla de la Sierra is a UNESCO bio reserve. 

The picturesque ‘valley of dreams’ is home to the Puebla river as well as an open air sculpture trail. 

Art lovers will also enjoy the Museo Japones, a museum dedicated to Japanese art. 

Despite being one of the most targeted areas during the Spanish Civil War, the area still has a lot of history, including the Parroquia de la Purisima Concepcion, an old chapel and mill. 

The stone buildings surrounded by forest are great to visit at any time of year but especially in Autumn. 

The town is a 1 hour 40 minute drive from the capital but there are no easy public transport routes. 

Patones de Arriba

Patones de Arriba is known for its traditional ovens Photo: Patones de Arriba Turismo

The unique stone architecture and steep, magical streets attract many visitors to this small village full of charm. 

Once a ‘kingdom’, Pantones de Arriba has a rich past which can be seen in the Antigua Iglesia de San Jose and Fuente Nueva. 

The cobbled streets house many miradores and traditional log burning ovens, as well as a museum dedicated to the local area. 

Autumn is the perfect time to visit this fairytale village as the leaves turn burning orange along the many hiking paths. 

Patones is easily accessible by car or public transport, being just over an hour outside of Madrid. 


Chinchon’s balconies are picturesque at any time of year. Photo: Ayuntamiento de Chinchon

This town has a unique plaza with ramshackle buildings and enchanting three story balconies where you can enjoy the local cuisine. 

The square hosts many events throughout the year including bull fights, comedy festivals and music performances. 

Another must visit is the 17th century nunnery famous for the sweet treats handmade by the sisters. 

The local baths, once for washing clothes, has now been renovated using colourful murals, turning it into a picturesque spot. 

Chinchon is easy to get to from the capital, with trains taking just one hour.

Perales de Tajuana 

The Perales de Tajuana caves are just one of the areas impressive sites. Photo: Ayuntamiento de Perales de Tajuana

Great for families, there are a wealth of free activities in Perales. 

The Island of Taray is ideal for hiking or cycling along its old railway line. 

Kids will also love discovering the caves, ruined castle and neolithic site, both free to explore.

For those interested in religion, the Iglesia de Santa Maria del Castillo and the Ermita de San Sebastian are worth a look. 

Finally, take a wander through the town to discover its many fountains, curious cave house and picturesque main square. 

It is a 45 minute drive from Madrid, or you can catch a 50 minute bus from Atocha station. 

Alcala de Henares

Alcala de Henares is picturesque, cultural and historic. Photo: Turismo Alcala de Henares

Known as the birthplace of Miguel de Cervantes, author of Don Quixote, Alcala de Henares is one for culture lovers. 

Visitors should start in the floral Plaza de Cervantes before exploring the historic university, Cervantes museum, cathedral, palace and roman ruins. 

Getting to the town couldn’t be easier, with a 40 minute train or drive from Madrid.


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