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Segovia Aqueduct

One-day tour of Segovia

Segovia

What to see in Segovia in one day

Segovia is a World Heritage City, with unique sights that are worth a trip in themselves. However, once in Segovia you will find the city offers much, much more. An old Jewish quarter, grand mansions, outstanding views and a green belt which is ideal for a pleasant stroll in the sunshine. This route covers the best of the city in one day.

In the morning

Journey: Walking / Duration: 2 and a half hours

Visit to the Aqueduct, Jewish Quarter and the Cathedral: A good time to begin your visit to Segovia is at 10.30 am. Our first stop is in the Plaza del Azoguejo square, where we find the main Visitor Centre and the imposing Aqueduct. This is a good opportunity to pick up all the information you need.As well as having your photo taken under the aqueduct, you can also see interesting details, especially the perfection of the masonry, with no mortar or other adhesive material to keep the blocks together. Each one (weighing up to two tons) is simply placed on top of another, demonstrating the precision of Roman engineering. If you look closely, you'll see that apart from some of the lower ones, the stones all have grooves on their sides. These are the marks caused by dragging the stones and raising them into position.From the Aqueduct, walk towards the Jewish Quarter along Calle Cervantes, and continue along Calle Juan Bravo until the Puerta de la Luna arch, which leads onto the avenue of Paseo del Salón. On the way, take a look at the façades of the buildings, many decorated with geometric and plant motifs. Their variety adds to their charm. You will also pass the church of San Martín, a good example of Romanesque art in Segovia, and the Casa de los Picos house. Some of the courtyards in this area –for example, the one in Casa de los Del Río– are also worth visiting.From the Paseo del Salón, you have a good view of part of the city’s green belt, and the Alcázar fortress to the left. You can then go up through the Puerta del Sol arch to Calle de la Judería Vieja (the old Jewish Quarter), and visit the former Main Synagogue. Next, go around the Cathedral along Calle San Geroteo street to the Plaza de la Merced square, to complete your tour of the Jewish Quarter.After you have seen its spectacular exterior, you can enter the Cathedral from Calle del Marqués de Arco, which leads onto Plaza Mayor.Worth knowingIt is advisable to wear comfortable shoes, as Segovia is quite hilly.In the Visitor Centre on Plaza Azoguejo, you can hire guides to show you around the whole city and its heritage buildings. The best-conserved section of the Aqueduct is on Plaza Azoguejo, although other sections of the monument are still standing and in good condition. However, these parts have been reconstructed, as you can see from the style of the arches or from the stones themselves. The rest of the aqueduct extends to the mountains for about 14 kilometres.One of the best views of the Aqueduct can be had from the top of the Postigo steps beside it, next to the information centre.There is a small market in Plaza Mayor on Thursday mornings.The remains of the former Jewish Cemetery are located in the green area known as El Pinarillo, opposite the Jewish Quarter.

Lunch: This is the time to try the local cuisine. There are a host of restaurants in the streets leading off Plaza Mayor, in the area around the Cathedral and on Plaza del Azoguejo.If it’s a warm, sunny day, there are numerous terraces with impressive views of the monuments. To eat, there are famous local specialities, such as roast suckling pig or milk-fed lamb. If you prefer fish, trout is the best option.

Traditional roast suckling pig in Segovia
Places not to be missed

What to see


In the afternoon

Journey: Walking / Duration: 4 and a half hours

Visit to the Alcázar and up to the tower: Segovia is a city that can be explored on foot, and a gentle walk will take you to the Alcázar fortress. As well as visiting the interior, it is definitely worthwhile to climb to the top of the tower (152 stairs), as it offers outstanding views of the church of Vera Cruz and El Parral monastery. There is also another surprise in store for you: all around you, the mountains spread in waves like a great sea. Nearby, in the centre of the city, stands the Cathedral. The Aqueduct is a little lower down, although it cannot be seen from the Alcázar.Segovia’s layout and gradient mean that many people conceive of the city as a great ship, with the Alcázar at the prow, the Cathedral as the main mast, and the Aqueduct as the anchor cast into the sea, represented by the mountain range. Bearing this image in mind, your view from the top of the tower is like a sailor's in the crow's nest of a ship.Worth knowingThe visit to the Alcázar has two parts: the interior of the building, including the armoury and the chapel; and the tower.The climb to the tower, although not requiring any great levels of fitness, may be hard due to the shallow steps and the narrowness of the stairwell.It is advisable to book in advance for guided tours in languages other than Spanish.

View of the Alcázar fortress in Segovia

Looking out over a balcony with a thousand views: Segovia is surrounded by a stretch of greenery that offers up a different view at every turn: a mysterious castle (the Alcázar) which rises from among the trees, a large river, and a fortified citadel with multiple towers. All this makes it an ideal spot for photographers. It's also a very brightly lit city, and particularly from May to September, is the perfect place for strolling amid the greenery against the backdrop of the Alcázar.A good way to spend the afternoon, if you are not tired enough to go back to the hotel, is to head down from the Alcázar to the river Eresma and cross the bridge to visit the church of Vera Cruz, the Fuencisla shrine and the convent of the Carmelitas Descalzas or El Parral monastery. Also, if you take along something to eat, you can sit peacefully beside the river and have a picnic in the shade of the trees as you enjoy the afternoon.Worth knowingThere are three signposted routes around the city, all of which take you through the Jewish cemetery, Fuencisla, Vera Cruz, El Parral and the convent of the Carmelitas Descalzas. These are highly recommended on a sunny day and will guarantee you take home some unique photos of Segovia.You can rent bicycles on Plaza Mayor - a great way to enjoy the city’s green belt.El Parral has a mass in Gregorian chant every Sunday at midday.

Plaza Mayor square in Segovia

Buying souvenirs:  It’s time to go back to the walled city and pick up a few souvenirs. Go up via Puerta de Santiago, a road which is part of the Way of Saint James. The Poets’ Garden is a good place to stop and take some photographs. The area around Plaza Mayor is a great spot to find a whole range of souvenirs of the city, including typical local crafts, and all kinds of gifts. 

Souvenir shop in Segovia

Dinner overlooking the illuminated Aqueduct: Paseo del Salón, Plaza Mayor, Plaza de Medina del Campo and the streets between them are full of places where you can whet your appetite with some typical Segovian tapas. But there's one unforgettable way of rounding off your day, and that is having a wonderful dinner against a backdrop of the illuminated Aqueduct. This is the perfect time to try some delicious wild mushrooms or tasty Cantimpalos chorizos. Afterwards, if you want to get a taste of Segovia’s nightlife, there are numerous venues in the San Millán area playing the latest music. If you feel like a leisurely stroll before returning to your hotel, the historic centre of the town, with all the monuments beautifully lit up, is an excellent option.Worth knowingThe Visitors' Centre arranges dramatised tours and night walks to learn about the city’s legends.

Panoramic view of Segovia
Places not to be missed

What to see


Tips and recommendations

How to get here

Bus: there are several regular bus lines to and from Madrid, Avila and Salamanca, running several times a day.

Train: several daily high-speed train services (AVE) connect with Madrid (approximately 30 minutes) and Valladolid (approximately 40 minutes). From the station, there is a bus service to the city centre (approximately 15 minutes)

By road: Madrid – Segovia: on the A6 motorway, then continue on the AP6 and AP61. Approximate travel time: 1 hour 15 minutes. Avila – Segovia: on the A51 and continue on the AP6 and AP61. Approximate travel time: one hour.

By air: the nearest airports are Madrid (87 kilometres), Valladolid (125 kilometres) and Salamanca (164 kilometres).

What to do

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