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Salamanca, situated in the northwest of Spain, is a gorgeous and ancient city renowned for it’s beautiful and ornate sandstone architecture, giving off a golden hue and earning itself the nickname of ‘La Dorada’ or Golden City.
The old city of Salamanca, which is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site, has fantastic examples of Moorish, Gothic and Baroque architectural inspiration. Some of the noteworthy sights being the Salamanca Cathedral, the Plaza Mayor and the Salamanca University to name only a few.
It’s no wonder that this city is such a popular stopover for many tourists visiting Spain.
If you’re wanting to visit and happen to be flying into Madrid first, then you may be wondering exactly how to get from Madrid to Salamanca.
If that’s the case, then great news, this post is for you!
In this article I will provide all the information you may need to travel between these two Spanish cities, whether doing so by bus, train or car.
Journey Duration: Fastest train service – 1 Hour 36 minutes
When using public transport to travel from Madrid to Salamanca, then travel by train is undoubtedly the quickest option and in my opinion, the best way to travel.
This is in large part due to the fast and reliable high-speed rail network that operates throughout Spain.
These high-speed train services are managed by Spanish rail company, Renfe, through whom you can consult schedules and book online too.
The faster AVANT trains are the quickest and take only around 1 hour 36 minutes to complete the journey between these two cities.
On this Madrid to Salamanca train route (and same upon the return), you will also find a couple of other slower trains in operation.
On average these take anywhere from 2 and a half hours to just over 3 hours in journey time.
In general, a one-way ticket for an adult traveller would start from around €20 and upward in price. Although, when booking in advance, you could bag yourself a cheaper promo fare, which go for as little as just under €12 for an adult one-way.
Unfortunately, the Renfe site does not allow you to book too far in advance. Only allowing bookings around 2 months in advance.
Thus, you may need to check back closer to your departure, especially if you are planning your trips months in advance.
Train from Madrid to Salamanca
The Madrid to Salamanca train route currently has over 10 departures on weekdays, starting from 07:40 am in the morning and running up to the last train departure at 21:43 pm at night.
On weekends, these schedules differ ever so slightly, when trains only start running from 08:28 am, and continue up until 21:43 pm.
I do have to point out that these times are based on currently availability and of course these may change over time.
As such I would highly recommend that you check back on the Renfe site closer to your set departure dates, to reconfirm the up to date departure times & frequencies.
Salamanca to Madrid Train
Upon the return, the services on the train from Salamanca to Madrid also offers over 10 departures and do so between the hours of 04:56 am until 19:58 pm daily.
When travelling from Madrid to Salamanca by train, the high-speed Avant Trains tend to depart from Madrid’s Chamartín Railway Station, whereas the slower services depart from the Príncipe Pío train station in Madrid.
Both of these stations are connected to Madrid’s metro / subway system, making them easily accessible.
Do make sure to note down and confirm the station from which you’ll be departing. This information will be displayed on your ticket that you receive from Renfe when booking online.
In Salamanca, there is only one train station which is situated quite centrally. Depending on where you are staying within Salamanca, you may be able to walk or alternatively catch a taxi to your end destination.
Journey Duration: Quickest bus service – 2 Hours 20 minutes
The next travel option, by means of public transport, is to take make use of the Madrid Salamanca bus service, operated by coach company Avanzabus.
Operating over 20 departures daily and with a one-way ticket starting from just under €15 and upwards, it’s a great alternative to rail travel.
The quickest bus journey takes around 2 hours 20 minutes, whereas the longest journey takes 3 hours 25 minutes in total.
Madrid to Salamanca Bus
More specifically, when taking the bus from Madrid to Salamanca, the service starts running from 07:00 am in the mornings and continue throughout the day until the last departure at 22:30pm at night on weekdays and Saturdays.
On Sundays, buses only start departing from 08:00 am up until the last bus leaves as 23:00 pm at night.
Salamanca Madrid Bus
If planning a return journey, the Salamanca to Madrid bus services usually operate between the hours of 06:00 am to 21:00 pm on weekdays and Saturdays.
Again, on Sundays, these times alter slightly and buses run from 08:00 am until 21:00 pm at night.
When departing out of Madrid you will have the option of departing either from Madrid’s Estacion Sur station, Madrid’s Moncloa bus station or even directly from the Airport too.
Both Moncloa and Estacion Sur are easily accessible by metro, whereas from Madrid Airport, the buses depart from either Terminal 1 or Terminal 4.
When searching online through the Avanzabus website, you will be able to specify your departure preference.
Tip: When searching on Avanazbus, it may be frustrating to go back and forth, searching by each station. As such, a tip is to make use of a comparative site such as Trainline or Omio to view all available buses including all departure points.
When arriving into Salamanca, you will arrive at the bus terminal which is situated in Avenida de Filiberto Villalobos.
Similarly, to the train, the bus station is also located quite central and you may opt to walk or even catch the taxi to your destination within Salamanca city.
Journey Duration: Quickest route should take approximately 2 hours 14 minutes
If you much rather prefer the freedom to travel at your own leisure, without the constraints of set departure schedules and times, then travelling by car would be your best bet.
With the distance from Madrid to Salamanca being around 220 kilometres, the quickest route, via the A-50 should in theory take you 2 hours 14 minutes to complete.
I say ‘in theory’ as it’s worth remembering that Madrid is a large city and depending where you depart from, traffic and other factors may end up adding lots more time to your overall journey time.
Spanish Tolled Motorways
If you do plan on taking the A-50 highway when driving from Madrid to Salamanca, then do bear in mind that you may encounter sections of tolled roads along the way.
In Spain you will come across both free and tolled motorways. I found this great, printable Spanish road map, which is very useful in establishing which roads you can expect to be tolled.
This may be especially handy if you’re planning a road trip throughout Spain.
Renting a car
Still need to book your car rental for Spain?
If you’re looking for a recommendation, then I can happily suggest that you check out – RentalCars.com.
If you haven’t used them before, they are a comparative site through whom you can view a range of providers as well as their rates, availability and terms based on your travel dates.
You can then also book and confirm your rental through their site.
Having personally used them before, we’ve found RentalCars.com to be pretty easy to use and seamless, and rates very competitive too!
Whether you are travelling from Madrid to Salamanca by bus, train or car, there is an option to suit any budget and personal preference. So, getting between these two Spanish cities should be a breeze!
Have you travelled along this route before and have any tips or suggestions I may have missed? Or do you have any questions on this guide?
If so, then I’d love to hear back from you. Feel free to add your comments or questions in the comments section down below.
Welcome! I'm Marco Santos a.k.a Travel-Boo. A South African & Portuguese travel blogger connecting with my Portuguese roots. Since I've moved to Portugal from South Africa permanently a few years ago, I've decide to share my story of discovery of all things Portugal travel related. So follow along and see what makes this beautiful country so very special!
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