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Alcala De Henares Travel Guide, Spain

Alcalá de Henares Travel Guide - A modern day medieval citadel

Located 35 kilometres from Madrid, Alcalá de Henares, mostly known simply as Alcalá, is a charming medieval city that attracts thousands of tourists every year. The beautifully preserved city centre has been declared a Word Heritage Site by UNESCO, but the architecture is not the only thing Alcalá is famous for. In addition to housing one of Spain’s most prestigious universities, Alcalá is also the birthplace of Spanish writer Miguel de Cervantes, the creator of the famous Don Quixote. If you’re looking to spend our holiday in a picturesque city steeped in history and culture, Alcalá de Henares is the perfect spot for you. This Alcalá de Henares Travel Guide will help you plan your holiday in one of Spain’s most beautiful cities.

Alcalá de Henares Travel Guide - Transport

Alcalá is only a thirty minutes train ride away from Madrid. Trains depart every 10 minutes from the Atocha station in Madrid, and they run from early morning until past 11 o’clock at night. The closest airport to Alcalá is Barajas, a large airport that has incoming and outgoing flights to other major tourist destinations like Valencia, Alicante, Barcelona, and also international flights to most European capitals. In the city, the best way of getting around is on foot. The city centre’s narrow winding cobbled streets are usually pedestrian, and they make for a very pleasant walk. If you want to get to the outskirts of the city you can take the bus or a cab.

Alcalá de Henares Travel Guide - Accommodation

If you’re looking for cheap accommodation, you’d have better luck staying in Madrid. Although there’s a large student population in the area, there are very few youth hostels. Backpackers who don’t plan on spending much time in their hotel room will appreciate Hostal de Torero, an unpretentious but very affordable hostel. If you’re looking for something more comfortable, there are several pricier hotels in the city. Hotel Bedel has rooms with a great view towards the University, and it is very close to Plaza de Cervantes. Hotel Ciudad de Alcalá offers good living conditions and it is at 10 minute’s walk from the city centre. If you’re looking for a really luxurious place to stay, choose Rafaelhoteles Forum Alcalá, a four star hotel that offers everything from spas to conference rooms.

Alcalá de Henares Travel Guide Interesting facts

Not many people know that Alcalá is the birthplace of Catherine of Aragon, the first of the six wives of Henry VIII, the famous English monarch. Apart from being famous for its historical personalities, Alcalá is well known for its large population of white storks. If you're fond of bird-watching, this Alcalá de Henares Travel Guide recommends that you visit the city in spring when the storks are nesting. The city now even has an official policy for the protection of stork nests. Another little known fact is that 18% of Alcalá’s population is made up of immigrants, and the city has the largest Romanian community in Spain, who even organizes yearly festivals and has its own political party.

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