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Aranjuez Cultural Landscape

Travel Guide Europe Spain Madrid Aranjuez Aranjuez Cultural Landscape

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Introduction

Aranjuez, Royal Palace

Aranjuez, Royal Palace

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The Royal Palace

The palace was build in the late 16th century upon the wished of King Felipe II, and over the years completed and extended with two large wings. The Palace is situated at the place where the river Jamara and the Tagus meet. A visit to the castle includes visits to the King's and the Queen's private chambers, the Gala Dining hall and the Throne room. One of the highlights however is the Arabian Room, which is decorated with the Alhambra in Granada in mind. The room was done by the architect who was in charge of the restauration on the Alhambra. In the room is also a painting of the Courtyard of Lions, that can be found in the Alhambra. Another highlight is the Porcelain Study, which has all the wall covered by Chinese porcelain figures which are held in place by screws. On the southside of the palace is the Garden of the King, and the Parterre, with layed out garden, and the fountain of Ceres.

Jardin del Principe

Near to the palace there are a lot of gardens, which make a nice retreat for the people of Aranjuez as well as for the visitors. Almost every king has extended the gardens. Especially the Jardin del Principe has been extended several time. It can be devided into several gardens, with different themes and dating from different era's. In this garden, you will find a mixture of trees and plants from Europe, and from the Americas. The garden follows the stream of the river Tagus, which makes a natural border for the garden.

Aranjuez, Casa del Labrador

Aranjuez, Casa del Labrador

© All Rights Reserved Herr Bert

When coming from a visit to the palace, the easiest way to enter the Jardin del Principe is at the beginning of the Calle de la Reina.

If you walk through the gates you can walk the road between the 1st and the 2nd garden, till the end where you will find 5 pavillions, and also the Landing stage for the royal family. It was a custom for a long time that the royals made the trip to the pavillions by boat, which also included musicians, making the trip into a kind of floating opera. Near to the pavillions is the Museo de las Faluas (the boat museum). If you follow the Tagus, which makes a bent here, you will get to other parts of the park. The 5th and 6th garden might be the most beautiful ones. Here you can find the fountain of Neptune, and a nice Chinese pond. In the so called 8th garden you can visit the Casa de Labrador, which is a small palace, build in the 18th century, and now holds a museum.

Jardin de la Isla

Aranjuez, Fuente de Ceres

Aranjuez, Fuente de Ceres

© All Rights Reserved Herr Bert

The other garden is the Jarden de la Isla (Garden of the Island), which streches next to the Palace. In this garden you can find fountains tributed to Hercules, Venus, Apollo, Bacchus and Neptune.

The Palace and the surrounding gardens were put on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 2001.

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Opening Hours

The Palace can be visited in the summer (April till September) from 10.00 until 18.15. In winter the palace closes one hour earlier at 17.15. On mondays the palace is closed. The gardens open at 8.00 and depending on the season close between 18.30 and 21.30.

The Casa del Labrador can only be visited with a reservation. The number to on which you can make the reservation is 918910305. The casa del Labrador is opened between 10.00 to 18.00 in summer and 10.00 to 17.00 in winter.

On many holidays, the palace is closed, for a complete overview, visit the website of the Patrimonio Nacional.

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Cost

Aranjuez, Jardin del Principe

Aranjuez, Jardin del Principe

© All Rights Reserved Herr Bert

There are several tickets available for several tours. The most expensive tour (with a guide) costs 8 euros, and a visit without a guide 4,50 euros. On wednesday the non-guided tickets are free for citizens of the EU. On the 18th of May (Museum Day) and on some local holidays, the palace is free for everyone, no matter where they come from.

A said: there are guided tours, but you can also opt for an audio tour. (2,50 for the Palace, 3,50 Palace & Gardens)

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Getting There

By Train

From Madrid Aranjuez can be easily reached by Cercanias. You can the C-3 line from most of the major station in Madrid (Chamartin, Nuevos Ministerios, Sol and Atocha). The Cercanias are commuter trains so they make a lot of stops, but still get you in Aranjuez under an hour.

By Car

Aranjuez lies on the A-4 highway that runs from Madrid to the south to Córdoba and Seville. An alternative for the A-4 is the R-4, which is toll free, and splits off from the M-50 highway, south of Madrid, near Getafe.

By Bus

From the busstation of Mendez Alvaro in the south of Madrid, the company of Aisa y Samar has a direct busconnection between Madrid and Aranjuez.

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This is version 9. Last edited at 20:27 on Sep 6, 09 by Herr Bert. 3 articles link to this page.

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