Last updated on November 27th, 2018 at 02:15 am
Spain is a country known for the grandness of its architecture, the richness of its culture and the influence of its beliefs to the rest of the world. While the country is home to many gorgeous sites, saying that Segovia (a UNESCO World Heritage site) is one of the grandest, richest and most beautiful town is quite an understatement. Wondering what places to visit in Segovia? We got you covered.
In this blog post, we aim to give you all the best recommendations of things to do in Segovia, food to try in Segovia, your daily budget in Segovia on a day tour from Madrid and where to eat cochinillo in Segovia. After all, Segovia is a place that’s worth exploring and we wanna make sure you’re all set before you travel. Check out our comprehensive guide to Segovia below:
How to get to Segovia
Segovia is very accessible, especially for those coming from Madrid. You can take a bus from Madrid’s Monocloa bus station and reach Segovia’s bus station at Paseo de Ezequiel Gonzalez, which is near the Aqueduct. A one way ticket costs around €8 and the ride lasts for 1-2 hours.
Boarding a train from Madrid to Segovia is also quite easy. The Atocha and Chamartin train stations have trips to Segovia which costs around €8. If you’re traveling on the AVE (Spain’s high-speed train), you will be dropped off at the Segovia-Guiomar Station where you can take the bus to the Aqueduct or to the central bus station for €2.
There’s nothing like a good, old-fashioned European road trip! Segovia is located around 90 km away from Madrid so it’s always best to avoid traveling during the rush hour (7:30-9:30 AM) to avoid delaying your trip. You can leave Madrid from Gran Via or from the M30 and gain direct access to A6 which leads to Segovia. You can also take the scenic route at M601 to Navacerrada. There is a toll road from Madrid that it´s worth it to get to avoid the traffic crossing hte mountain. We chose going by car from Mostoles my hometown to Segovia.
Transportation around Segovia
Going around Old Town is usually done on foot as destinations are very close to each other and it’s also the best way to get to know the Segovia. There are also bike rentals available for those who like to cycle. How awesome would it be to go biking around such a historic and romantic place, right? Those traveling with family or friends might also consider renting a car to go around Segovia and the nearby cities of Mostoles, Fuenlabrada and Madrid. But to move around Segovia we decided to walk since there are short distances in the city.
Best time to visit Segovia
The weather in Segovia is very pleasant, making it pretty much a year-round destination. Yay! Those who want to spend the day walking around should note that the best time to visit Segovia is from March to September. Rainfall can only be expected between November and January while the other months are much drier.
ATMs and Currency in Segovia
We all know that the euro is a very powerful currency in the continent and is a must when traveling to most European cities. €1 is equivalent to $1.16, more or less. Click here to check the exact exchange rate between the euro and your currency. With Spain being the country with the most number of ATMs per person, you’re sure to find an ATM when you visit Segovia. There are plenty of machines in Segovia like the ones in Avenida Fernandez Ladreda.
Chip and PIN cards are more popular in Spain than swipe cards but the latter are still widely accepted in the country. It’s always better to use ATMs in safe establishments (like banks and malls) and to avoid shady looking machines. As for money exchange, there are places for those in Madrid but travelers are well advised to use ATMs instead or better yet, exchange money before their travels.
Daily Budget to visit Segovia
If you’re planning on visiting Segovia, I’m sure you’re wondering how many euros you need to prepare, especially if you are going on a day trip to the Old Town. It is actually advisable to take a day tour with a group to Segovia and other nearby places like Toledo and Avila. For €40-85, you can explore many cultural and historical sites with a guide and with lunch included. This is a great way to explore Segovia’s Aqueduct and other landmarks. If you go for a day trip as we did you can get a meal in Segovia for €20-25 you can try cochinillo, small pig typical dish in Segovia. It´s exact the same than lechon in the Philippines and it was Rachel´s favorite food in Spain.
Those who want to visit Segovia in their own time can go to the community by commuting or renting a car. A bus or train ride goes for €8 while car rentals from Madrid to Segovia for as low as €30 for a compact car, €70 for an SUV, a spacious 5-7 seater van for €90 and a cool convertible for €190. Food don’t have to take up so much of your budget since many meals can be afforded at €6-12 with a bottle of domestic beer. Great news: Many of the sites can also be visited for free! Others only charge a small fee of €2-7.
Finally, there are accommodations in Segovia for those who want to spend the night in this historic site. A budget hostel goes for €15-25 while a hotel room can cost around €30-100. A luxurious room or apartment can be availed at €150. AirBnB is also available in Segovia for as low as €8 – Wow! Want to get an even better deal? Click here to get a discount on your first booking with AirBnB!
Things to do in Segovia
1. Eat cochinillo in Segovia
Have you ever eaten roast suckling pig? Well, it wasn’t Rachel and I’s first time to encounter such a dish since lechon is a very famous food in the Philippines. In Spain, the dish is called cochinillo and the best ones in the country are said to be found in Segovia. You can order a cochinillo meal for €16 while an entire pig costs €110. We really loved Segovia’s version and we highly recommend it! We were 6 of us for eating the whole cochinillo in Segovia and it was too much food, we think is fine for 8 people.
2. Ride on a hot air balloon in Segovia
Want to explore Segovia beyond where your feet and wheels can carry you? Why not go on a hot air balloon tour in Segovia? This is quite a popular way to see Segovia among tourists who are willing to splurge a bit. Just imagine how romantic, quiet and memorable that moment will be! A hot air balloon ride typically costs around €160.
3. Wine and dine in Segovia
What is a Eurotrip without getting a little fancy shmancy? We’re not talking about 5-star hotels and Michelin star restaurants, just some good old wine night will do. If you’re looking for a place that has the perfect ambience for such an evening, places like Restaurante Taberna Lopez, El Oso Blanco, Casares, and La Postal are wonderful restaurants that serve local food and excellent wine. Treat yourself with a meal after a long day exploring Segovia!
More things to do in Segovia
4. Aqueduct in Segovia
For centuries, El Acueducto has been the symbol of Segovia as it is the city’s most popular and most beautiful landmark. The Roman Aqueduct is not just a sight to behold but is also a very historic structure as it was built in 1st century AD. The Aqueduct is made up of more than 20,000 granite blocks that form 163 arches, with its highest point at 28 m high in Plaza del Azoguejo. It is located at the center of town and stretches for 818 m.
Seeing it was such a thrilling experience. To be able to see a structure that stood the test of time really makes us think about how amazing human hands and minds can be.
5. Alcazar in Segovia
One must-see landmark in Segovia is Alcazar, a castle that looks like it came straight from a fairytale. In fact, many say that Walt Disney was inspired by the Alcazar when designing Cinderella’s castle. That’s how gorgeous and majestic this structure is. However, the one we see today is only a reconstruction of Alcazar as the original building burned down in 1862. Gates open at 10 AM and costs €5-7.
Travel tip: Every third Tuesday of the month, entrance to the Alcazar is FREE!
6. Torre de Juan II
An interesting part of the Alcazar is Torre de Juan II, a tower that can be visited for €2 if you want to see the most picturesque view of Segovia. Climbing the tower on its 152-step spiral staircase can be a bit tiring but the scenery from the top will make you forget the journey up. If you have the extra euros, make sure to add this on your list of things to do in Segovia.
7. Segovia Cathedral
Located in Plaza Mayor is the Segovia Cathedral, an imposing Gothic church and is the last of its kind made in Spain. The original cathedral perished in a fire on 1520 but has then been reconstructed from 1525-1577. Now, that’s a long time to build a church! All the years was worth it, though, as the Segovia Cathedral now stands tall and proud on the highest point of the town.
The Segovia Cathedral is open from 9:30 AM-5:30 PM and has a small entrance fee of €3. Great news: The Cathedral has free admission on Sundays from 9:30AM-1:15 PM. The place will be packed then so make sure to go early!
8. Jewish Quarter
Located at the south side of Segovia is La Juderia, or the Jewish Quarter, a district that formerly had 7 gates and is a nice street to walk around in. This is the perfect place to learn about Segovia’s Jewish history. Here you’ll find old synagogues, a small museum and many other interesting sites. Exploring the Jewish Quarter is definitely one of the things to do in Segovia that you shouldn’t miss!
9. Gate of San Andres
Puerta de San Andres is the last surviving gate into La Juderia, or the Jewish Quarter. Though not as appealing and eye-catching as other places to visit in Segovia, it is very much rich in history as it has been around since 1120, but has been restored several times. The Gate of San Andres is also close to the museum where you can learn all about social segregation of the Jewish community.
10. Royal Palace of La Granja de San Ildefonso
Segovia is home too beautiful architecture and that includes La Granja. This Baroque-style palace is located on the hills near Segovia, has magnificent gardens surrounding it and was formerly the summer residence of the King of Spain. Now, La Granja serves as a museum with a breathtaking garden filled with fountains, sculptures and art of of all kinds.
La Granja is open from 10 AM-6 PM, Tuesday to Sunday, with an entrance fee of €9. It is worth it to see this beautiful place!
11. Church of Vera Cruz
Iglesia de Vera Cruz is a church in Segovia built by the Knights Templar. Its inner temple was where the knights held their secret rites and it used to be the resting place of a piece of the Vera Cruz. Church of Vera Cruz has 12 sides and 2 storeys, lies just outside Segovia’s walls, and can be visited for free on Tuesday to Sunday from 4-6 PM. It is one of the best places to visit in Segovia, for sure!
12. Church of San Martin
Another church that you can visit for free in Segovia is Iglesia de San Martin in Plaza de Juan Bravo. It is a romanesque church with an eye-catching, ornate altar set inside bare church walls. You can visit the Church of San Martin during the hours of service only. It may be small but Iglesia de San Martin is an architectural marvel in Segovia.
13. Real Casa de Moneda
More famously known as “The Royal Mint,” this infrastructure is a rare example of industrial architecture in Segovia. Here’s a trivia: Real Casa de Moneda uses the same wooden channels and waterwheels that it did back in the 16th century. However, it no longer serves as a Royal Mint and now houses 2 museums: the Museum of the Casa de la Moneda and the Aqueduct Interpretation Centre.
The Royal Mint is open to the public daily for €3 while there are no entrance fees on Wednesday. There are guided tours to the place for those who want to learn more about its history.
14. Mirador de la Pradera de San Marcos
Looking for another angle to look at the fairytale castle of the Alcazar of Segovia? Then head on out to Pradera de San Marcos’ observation deck and fall in love with the stunning views of the Alcazar seen there. It is one of the best places to visit in Segovia, perfect for catching the sunset after a long day of exploring town.
Mirador de la Pradera de San Marcos can be visited for free (donations welcome) and is open 24 hours. Yay!
15. Museo Gastronomico
Those into Spanish cuisine will surely enjoy the private museum in Segovia, Museo Gastronomico. This site features the best the Segovian region has to offer from wine and cheese to cured meats and ponche segoviano, a rich layered cake with custard and marzipan. Sounds heavenly, right? This is the perfect place to discover and get fascinated by Segovian cuisine and culture.
The museum has an entrance fee of €1 and €3 for a visit with tasting. Museo Gastronomico is open in weekdays from 11 AM-3 PM and until 8 PM on weekends.
Food to try in Segovia on a day tour from Madrid
Speaking of Segovian food, we’d like to share with you the best things you can eat when you visit Segovia. We’ve excluded the super yummy cochinillo from the list since we’ve already mentioned it earlier. So, here are the best food to try in Segovia:
A Castillan dish best found in Segovia, cordero asado is roast lamb that’s often served with a lo pobre potatoes. Cordero in Segovia is typically cooked in a wood-fired oven to ensure that the lamb absorbs all the flavors. The dish is made with simple ingredients but remains a mouthwatering dish because of the quality of lamb meat in Segovia. A definite must-try!
Judiones de la Granja
A very famous white bean delicacy in Segovia is called judiones de la granja. This heavy dish can be paired with chorizo and is a staple in Segovian cuisine. Though judiones is not particularly special, this humble meal has won the hearts of tourists and locals alike.
Yes, Segovia has tapas too! There are many restaurants in Segovia that serve this signature Spanish dish. Places like Casares, El Sitio, and Restaurante Jose Maria have a delicious and authentic selection of tapas on their menus. These appetizers are able to capture the essence of the best Spanish dishes in a single bite. We can’t get enough of them!
Festivals in Segovia
Cabalgata de Reyes
Also known as the “Cavalcade of Magi” or the “Three Kings’ Parade,” this festival in Segovia is celebrated every 5th of January and is based on the story of the three wise men who found the stable where Jesus was born. Melchor, Gaspar and Baltasar came bearing gifts for the infant Christ and they do the same during Cabalagata de Reyes. Instead of myrhh, frankinsence and gold, the king and his pages throw out candies to children. Segovian people love dressing up during this celebration to welcome the three kings.
Segovia’s Carnival is much like every other Spanish and Catholic city, so celebrating the festivities here would be one of the best things to do in Segovia. The celebration begins in Shrove Tuesday and lasts until the Entierro de la Sardina (or the Sardine Burial), another festival that marks the end of the Lenten season.
San Marcos Festival
Celebrated in the neighborhood just outside the walled city is San Marcos Festival, a feast that honors St. Mark. Here, you can participate in the tradition of buy hazelnuts, a local delicacy in San Marcos. There are many events throughout the festival and Segovia’s locals love attending their neighbor’s simple celebration. You can join them on the 25th of April every year.
What did you think about our Segovia travel guide? We hope you enjoyed reading that as much as we loved seeing those places. Did we miss any of the places to visit in Segovia that you know about? Tell us all about them in the comments! Looking forward to hearing about your adventures in Segovia!
To learn more about our recent Eurotrip, click here to read about our experiences in Lisbon, Portugal. We also traveled to Madrid, and you can click here to see our full Madrid travel guide. You can also visit Segovia as part of Camino de Santiago and if you have time you can go to Andalucia and visit Rachel´s favorite city in Spain: Seville.