The Philip II Train

  • El Tren de Felipe II
  • El Tren de Felipe II
  • El Tren de Felipe II
  • El Tren de Felipe II

A 50-minute ride to get to one of the most amazing sites in Spanish history. A different approach to the Royal Site of San Lorenzo de El Escorial and the adjoining village.

About 60km from downtown Madrid there stands one of the most dazzling sites in the area: the Monastery of San Lorenzo de El Escorial – the realisation of King Philip II’s imperial dreams. Located in a wonderful natural setting, the Monastery and its surroundings are places where history and culture come alive.

One of the funniest, most imaginative ways of getting to the Royal Site and Monastery is by the Philip II Train – a vintage train whose carriages and locomotive date back to the 1940s and 1960s, respectively. When you get on board, you are welcomed by characters wearing period costumes, who will introduce you to the atmosphere of ‘the empire on which the sun never sets’.

At your destination, you can visit the Monastery, of course – a masterpiece of Herrerian architecture –, and other landmarks in the Royal Site and the adjoining Village of El Escorial: the Casas de Oficios (Trade Houses), the Casita del Príncipe (Residence of the Prince), the Casa de Infantes (Infants’ House) and the Coliseo de Carlos III Royal Theatre. A walk in the village will give you a clear idea of the architectural splendour of the period.

Times and fares

The Philip II Train leaves Príncipe Pío Station at 10.20am, coming back to Madrid at 4.30 or 6.30pm (depending on the season). For full information on times and fares, click here.

You can include your train ticket in a package like Royal Legends, including a meeting at the station, a round trip on the vintage train (50-minute ride), a bus tour of Philip II’s forest, known as La Herrería, and visits to the Casa de Infantes gardens, the Monastery’s viewpoints, the gardens and esplanades at the Royal Site, and the San Lorenzo de El Escorial historical buildings. Tickets are 27 euro for adult visitors and 15 euro for children under 12 (infants under 4 free). Special group and family discounts available.


A unique way of traveling to and discovering Alcalá de Henares, the birthplace of Miguel de Cervantes. (Saturdays, from 18 May to 13 Jul and from 14 Sept to 14 Dec 2019).

A period train running between Madrid and Aranjuez recreates the Region of Madrid’s first rail line (Sat and Sun: 18 April-30 Jun and 14 Sep-26 Oct).

A fun way of travelling through time to the Middle Ages and discovering a city with centuries of history (27 Apr, 11, 18 and 25 May, 1 and 8 Jun, 21 and 28 Sept, 5, 19 and 26 Oct and 9 Nov).

Hop onto a train or bus and leave the hustle and bustle of the city behind.

Spend the day at a UNESCO World Heritage site, hire a guide to teach you interesting historical and cultural facts about Madrid, or follow one of our themed itineraries to discover the city from a different angle. 

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