Salamanca is one of the most popular destinations close to Madrid. However, at two-and-a-half hours travel time each way, you might want to stay the night.
Alternatively, add in a stop in Segovia, Avila, or El Escorial:
- Avila: It takes about an hour and a half to get from Madrid to Avila, and an extra hour to get from Avila to Segovia. There are both trains and buses. Visit Avila in the afternoon (getting lunch in the city) and then finish in Salamanca in the evening, where you should stay the night. Read more about how to get to Avila.
- Segovia: Similar transport options as with Avila. However, Segovia deserves more time than Salamanca. A good idea would be to stay the night in Segovia and travel to Salamanca in the morning. Read more about the best hotels in Segovia and how to get to Segovia.
- El Escorial: Similar again. However, if you want to visit El Valle de los Caidos too (which you should), transport can be complicated. Read more about visiting El Escorial and El Valle de los Caidos.
Madrid to Salamanca by Train and Bus
The train from Salamanca to Madrid takes about 2h30 and costs under 20 euros, which is similar to the bus. The train stations in both cities are closer to the center, so take the train.
Trains from Madrid to Salamanca depart from Chamartin train station. Read more about Bus and Train Stations in Madrid.
There are regular buses throughout the day between Madrid and Salamanca.
The journey takes two-and-a-half hours and costs under 20 euros. This is similar to the train.
This ticket can only be booked at Avanzabus.com, which is an awkward site. If you're having trouble with the site, use it for the timetable and then buy in person at the station. Better still, take the train.
Buses from Madrid to Salamanca depart from Mendez Alvaro bus station.
Madrid to Salamanca by Car
Take the A-6 to AP-6, AP-51 and the A-50 to travel by car from Madrid to Salamanca. The 215km journey takes just over 2h30.
It's best to spread this trip over an entire day, stopping at both Segovia and Avila on your way, finishing in Salamanca in the evening.