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Schedules and ticket prices to visit the Monastery of El Escorial

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Monastery of the Escorial in the surroundings of Madrid

If you have some days for your tourist trip to Madrid, so that you can do some visits in the surroundings, from my point of view two are the essential, Toledo and the Escorial Monastery.

In this regard you should know that in San Lorenzo del Escorial, very nice villa at the foot of the Sierra de Guadarrama, you have one of the most important monuments that you can visit in Spain.

Of the majesty of El Escorial Monastery, considered World Heritage by Unesco, it is useful for you that when it was built in the 16th century, it became the largest building in Europe at that time.


Escorial Monastery in the Sierra de Madrid

When you visit it, among other outstanding rooms, you can see the Palace of the Austrias, with the spectacularBattle Room, he Pantheon of Kings, very important place in the history of Spain, the Basilica and the library.

In short, it is a visit that you can do to your needs, well on your own or in a guided group (most advisable), which can take several hours due to the size of the monument.

All information in detail

  • How to visit the monastery of El Escorial from Madrid
  • How to go to El Escorial on your own from Madrid
  • Opening hours visit Monasterio del Escorial
  • ORGANIZE YOUR TRIP
  • Prices monastery of the Escorial
  • How to visit the Escorial monastery for free
  • How are the guided tours of the monastery of El Escorial
  • USEFUL TIPS for your TRIP

How to visit the monastery of El Escorial from Madrid

In this regard, if instead of going on your own, to go to El Escorial to visit the monastery you prefer to go from Madrid on a guided tour in Spanish, you have several options.

You can sign up for one excursion to the monastery of El Escorial, which also includes the visit of the Valley of the Fallen.


Monastery of El Escorial from the Silla de Felipe II in Madrid

It takes place in the mornings with a duration of five hours, and during the same one the visit of the monastery is carried out in which you will know the Palace of the Austrias, the Pantheon of the Kings and Infants, the Chapter House and the Basilica.

You will arrive in Madrid at 2 pm after making a brief visit of the Valley of the Fallen.

You also have the option of private excursion to the monastery of El Escorial from Madrid, or if you go too tight on your trip, the alternative of a excursion to Ávila, Segovia and El Escorial, which will take you a full day.

How to go to El Escorial on your own from Madrid

If you prefer instead go to El Escorial on your own, the following information will be useful for your visit to the monastery.

First of all, here is the information about how to get to El Escorial from Madrid, either by train or bus line.


Escorial Monastery in the Sierra de Madrid

Tour of El Escorial and visit of the monastery

Once you get to San Lorenzo de El Escorial You also have the option to sign up for a Full tour of the Escorial, which with a guide in Spanish and lasting 3 hours you will visit this beautiful village of the Sierra and make a guided tour of the monastery.

Opening hours visit Monasterio del Escorial

If, on the other hand, you decide to visit on your own, theschedules of the Monastery of El Escorial (2019) are, from Tuesday to Sunday, from April to September, from 10 to 20 hours, and from October to March, from 10 to 18 hours.

Note that the monastery of El Escorial closes on Mondays and the last entry on visiting days is one hour before closing.

The visit on your own will last a minimum of two hours.


Escorial Monastery in the Sierra de Madrid

Also, in your visit to the Royal Site of San Lorenzo de El Escorial You can also see other real buildings and gardens, such as the Garden of the Friars, next to the monastery building itself, or the Prince's House And its gardens.

In the official National Heritage website can check visiting hours fromEscorial monastery and from the other corners, as well as the days of the year the monastery closes.

Prices monastery of the Escorial

For your excursion you are also interested in knowing how much does the visit of the Monastery of El Escorial cost.

TheTicket prices to the Monastery of El Escorial In this year 2019 they have an increase, so that as of April 1 the price of the general rate is 12 euros, and that of the reduced rate, 6 euros.

The latter can benefit children between 5 and 16 years old, members of large families, students up to 25 years old and over 65 years old from countries of the European Union and Latin American.


Basilica in the Patio de Reyes of the Monastery of El Escorial

How to visit the Escorial monastery for free

In addition, they can visit the monastery of El Escorial for free, among other groups, children under 5, large families, teachers, people in legal unemployment and disabled people.

Likewise, the citizens of the aforementioned European Union and from countries Latin American we can visit the Monastery of El Escorial for free Wednesdays and Thursdays, from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., from April to September, and from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m., from October to March.

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Also on specific dates such as May 18, International Museum Day, or on October 12, National holiday in Spain.

How much does the audio guide cost in the monastery of El Escorial

If you prefer to visit on your own with the help of a audio guide, the price of this service is 4 euros, although you can also download the APP of the monastery of El Escorial, in which you have two routes.


Escorial Monastery in the Sierra de Madrid

How to visit the Casita del Príncipe in El Escorial

For its part, to visit the other real dependencies of San Lorenzo de El Escorialspecifically to Prince's House and the Casita del Infante Don Gabriel, you can only do it by signing up for a guided tour.

He price of admission for the Prince's House it's 5 euros, and for the Infant's House, 3 euros.

How are the guided tours of the monastery of El Escorial

If you go on your own, to visit the monastery you also have the possibility to subscribe to the recommended official guided tour, which will cost you an additional 4 euros (total ticket price, 14 euros).

You can also sign up for the free 4 euros in free admission.


Stairs of the cloister of the monastery of El Escorial

In recent years I have visited theEl Escorial monastery several times, always signing up for the guided tour, and on the most recent occasion the tour has been as follows.

Where the guided tours of the monastery of El Escorial begin

To do itvisit of the Monastery of El Escorial, in the Sierra deMadrid, you should not enter through the door of the main facade, which faces west, but through the north facade door.

TheGuided visits they are carried out on the fly, so just buy the ticket at the box office you must wait a few minutes until a new group is formed and the visit begins.

The guided tour now starts with theMonastery basilica.


Basilica of the monastery of El Escorial

The most prominent artistic corner is the sculpture of Jesus Christ crucified fromBenvenuto Cellini which is in one of the chapels. Made in three pieces of marbleCarraraIt was a gift toKing Philip II by its then Florentine owner.

Visit the Library of the monastery of El Escorial

Then, after going through theKings Courtyard, you will go up to thelibrary, one of the great jewels that theEl Escorial monastery, and where the frescoes in the vault made byTibaldi.

You will only see the central enclosure of the three rooms dedicated to the library where up to 40,000 copies are preserved, among which are large jewels such asCántigas de Alfonso X The Wise.

You will also go through themain staircase of the monastery atlarge central cloister where the so-called opensCourtyard of the Evangelists.


Library of the monastery of El Escorial

This corner is currently used by the Augustinian monks who reside there, and which you will not be able to see because the gallery is protected by wooden planks that preserve privacy.

On this staircase you will stop to see its great decoration with frescoes.

Old church of the monastery of El Escorial

Then, through the gallery you access theold church of the monastery of the Escorial (orborrowed church), which theKing Philip II He ordered to enable for the masses while the basilica was finished.

In this venue that is now used for concerts because of its good acoustics, you can see a picture ofTitian something dark, which in his day did not likePhilip II, but that is the most important artistic work that is preserved in the monastery.


Gallery of the cloister of the Patio de los Evangelistas in El Escorial monastery

During the guided tour you will continue through thechapter rooms, which now occupies themonastery paintings museum.

In addition to the frescoes that decorate their ceilings, a painting ofEl GrecoThe Martyrdom of Saint Mauritius, the largest that the Cretan artist painted, which was considered a pagan painting by the king so that he did not enter the Basilica, which was his initial location.

Visit of the Pantheon of Kings and Infants

From there you can access thePantheon of Infants, which was built in the 19th century by theQueen isabel II, where the graves of the relatives of the kings of the dynasties of the Habsburgs and the Bourbons are preserved.

At Pantheon of Infants especially highlights thetomb of Don Juan of Austria, with a spectacular reclining sculpture made of marble, in which you can see a replica of his sword.

You will also see the great three-story tomb, with 60 niches (occupied only 34), where the remains of children born of consanguineous marriages rest.


Pantheon of Kings in El Escorial Monastery @ Photo: Bocachete

The next stage of theguided tour of the Monastery of El Escorial, is to go down to the impressivePantheon of Kings located under thehigh altar from the basilica, where thekings of Spain of the dynasties of theAustrias and theBourbons.

There are also the tombs of the queens that were mothers of kings, and currently there are only three holes available, so there is a project to build a new pantheon associated with the current one.

Then you access the Palace of the Austrias orFelipe II House.

These are very austere units that were enabled as a residence for the kings of that dynasty, which surround the main altar of theBasilica of the Monastery of El Escorial.

Visit of the Habsburg Palace

You will start the visit in one of the most prominent corners of the monastery, the great room known as theBattle Room, which is decorated with large paintings that illustrate battles of the time, such as that ofSan Quentin (1557).


Courtyard of Kings in monastery of El Escorial

On your tour of thePalace of the Austrias you will pass through the room of the Infantas, where you will see a clavichord from the 16th century or a bed from the same period.

In the decoration abound Talavera sockets and the paintings of the Spanish and Flemish schools of the 16th century.

In the so-calledGuard room you have the opportunity to see the chair in which it was transported toKing Philip II on his last trip from Madrid to El Escorial, when he was already suffering from gout.

As a curiosity I will tell you that this"trip" it lasted for seven days !! because, due to his illness, the king needed long periods of rest. Philip II He died a few days after arriving at the monastery.

Portrait Hall

The CourtroomorPortrait Hall, shows portraits of all the kings of the dynasty ofAustria, among which the one ofPhilip IIPainted byTitian.


Paintings of the Stairs of the Cloister of the monastery of El Escorial

However, what will most attract your attention are the impressive carved doors with 17 different woods, which remain without varnish or paint, which were given away in 1567 byMaximilian I.

You will also see folding chairs used byPhilip II to support his sick gout leg.

Gallery of Paseo de Felipe II

TheFelipe II promenade gallery It is a large room located behind the main altar of the basilica, with 51 very curious cartographic maps of the world, which show you the knowledge that there was in the 16th century on the geography ofthe earth.

Profusely decorated withTalavera pottery, in this large rectangular room you can also see chimneys, armchairsfriars, a portable altar ofCarlos V and a curioussolar meridian, used to adjust the clocks of thePalace of the Austrias.


Gardens in the monastery of El Escorial in Madrid

From the windows you will see the so-calledOrchard of the Monks of the Monastery of El Escorial.

The room used as a dining room is decorated with paintings from different royal palaces, such as those ofAranjuezThe brown orThe farm.

Felipe II's bedroom

Finally in thisguided tour of the Austrias Palace of the Monastery of El Escorial, you will reach the room ofPhilip II, where you will see his bed, which will undoubtedly catch your attention its short length of only 1.58 meters.

From that bed, through a window,Philip II had direct vision ofhigh altar of the Basilica, and so he could follow the masses before his death on September 13, 1598, at age 71.


West facade of the monastery of El Escorial

Next to the bedroom of Philip II You will find a living room and the king's office, all very austere.

When I last went to the monastery, inguided visit the so-called was not includedPalace of the Bourbons, a succession of rooms with style decorationBourbon.

It is a much more bulky enclosure than that of Austrias, and where an excellent collection of tapestries stands out, some of its ownGoya.

In this palace they also keep flamenco and Pompeian-style tapestries brought byCarlos III, and also a sample of the impressive collection of watches Charles IV, being able to see about 90 of the almost thousand pieces that make up the same.

In short, a long and dense visit, in which the time you devote will depend on you, but in which you can give a very interesting review of the history of Spain.

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