My weekends in Madrid have always been monotonous — and I must say that they have turned doubly so, now that I have taken a new job. In fact, the latter has taken much of my time because workdays almost always include the weekends. So whenever I am free on a Saturday, I find myself confronted with the dilemma of whether to just use such precious time to rest, or do what I really like, which is to travel outside Madrid.
Traveling outside Madrid meant choosing nearby towns that are preferably 50 kilometers away or even nearer.
This is why I am hesitant in visiting Buitrago del Lozoya, one of the smaller towns within the Community of Madrid, nestled in the Lozoya Valley near the Sierra de Guadarrama — and some 74 kilometers away from the capital.
Such a distance meant more or less 2 hours of travel, causing me to have some second thoughts . But then I realized that my previous trips such as Cuenca and Salamanca were also distant. And I was only too happy to have gone through such travels as these two are veritable goldmines as far as tourist attractions are concerned.
What to see in Buitrago de Lozoya:
The Arrabal Bridge, or El Fuente Viejo, as it is popularly called, is a strong structure that spans the Lozoya River. It serves as a link between the Andarrio neighborhood and the walled city of Buitrago. From the bridge, you are afforded a beautiful view of the river as well as the walls.
Fly-fishing days at Buitrago are weekends, like how I observed when I wander by the vicinity of the river last Saturday. I presume the river bank is littered with avid anglers any day of the week
The Rio Lozoya is the natural geographical feature that gives the town its name. This river almost embraces the town on all parts, which makes it an effective means of defense against enemies.
Another famous landmark of Buitrago is its Clock Tower, found in one of the walls of the city
Popular recreational activity in Buitrago is canoeing. with the river turning into a major natural water facility as families troop to the site with their own or rented canoes to enjoy paddling through the waters all day long
The small town of Buitrago is surrounded by thick, good-conditioned walls built as early as the 11th century. It is said that walls surrounding Spanish towns and cities during the Medieval Ages are commonplace; they are meant to protect the towns and their people from invaders.
The crenels on the top edge of the castle walls have seen better days, yet they are obviously an integral part of what once were majestic majestic town walls meant to drive away prospective invaders during the Olden days
One of the major entrances of the Arab Walls, in front of the Sta Maria Iglesia
One of the minor gates of the Arab Walls, this one facing the River Lozoya
Peering through the main entrance to he walled town, you will be greeted by the Iglesia de Santa Maria del Castillo, a church that’s small in size but otherwise impressive in its interior. Santa Maria Church definitely adds character to the already charming town.
Visitors of the town will also be treated to the works of Spain´s foremost writer as Buitrago maintains a Cervantes Museum, located right in its midst.
How to go to Buitrago:
Take the ALSA autobus 191 stationed at Plaza Castilla Station. The buses park and pick up passengers at Darsena 36. Tickets cost 5.10 euros one way. From Madrid, you will have arrived at the town in approximately 1 hour and 35 minutes.