La Granja de San Ildefonso, Versailles in Spain!!!

And I continue my journey of black and white posts revising, updating and giving you the current links of the things and towns we traveled in the past This one was from our family trip to Spain in August 2016 to the royal town of La Granja de San Ildefonso!

On our way back from Segovia we came up the mountain of Navacerrada to see La Granja de San Ildefonso and its Palace. I have to say ,never been here, even if heard all about for it yeeears even from the time of living in Madrid, and coming down to Madrid several times a year. Been with the family and already at Segovia , I said ,this is the closest I will ever be so let’s give a visit. It is about 11 km from Segovia.


We arrive on time, but the palace was getting some facelift, and we did not go in , and believe or not ; I was not impressed. Maybe so used to the best castles/palaces in Europe , especially France and Spain, seen this one was a bit letdown. Nevertheless , the gardens are gorgeous and a brief visit while from Segovia will be good.  We were able to find parking just outside the property gates around the corner restaurant.  The we set out to walk inside. We saw the palace and the rénovations and proceeded to the gardens.

King Felipe V (who is the Grandson of King Louis XIV of France and was born at Versailles–1683) acquired the land and building of the Jeronimos in 1721. He wanted to re create the splendeur and ambiance of his native Versailles but really felled short.  Construction continues into the reign of king Carlos III.

The garden are the best part of it and are surrounded by several fountains with the best looking one the one call Fuente de Neptuno. The gardens have more than 12,000 trees in-line, 70,000 trees in total , and 30 km of lawn with 26 fountains It has a total area of 146 hectares and a high wall of 6 km around the encercle garden. The highest point is at the Ultimo Pino at 1325 meters high and the lowest point is at the Puerta del Vivero.

la granja de san ildefonso fountain gardens aug16

la granja de san ildefonso garden big fountain aug16

The work on the Palace of San Ildefonso, continues from 1725  to 1732,and the Patio de Coches (carriages) is built where today visitors entered the palace.  Next to the palace you see the Real Colegiata de la Santisima Trinidad Church where the tomb of Felipe V and his wife Isabel de Farnesio are laid.

Spanish history here is a bit intro: At this palace was the summer residence of the Bourbon kings and held the wedding of Carlos IV with Maria Luisa de Parma, the signing of the Treaty of San Ildefonso between Spain and France, the sargeants in the revolt obliges Maria Cristina de Nàpoles of proclaimed the Constitution of 1812.  Here too , was a place for receptions of embassies, births and baptism amongt them those of the Infanta Isabel (la Chata) and Don Juan (father of former King Juan Carlos I of Spain) Grandfather of the current one Felipe VI.

The tourist office of  Madrid on La Granja de San Ildefonso:

National Heritage of Spain on La Granja de San Ildefonso:

The tourist office of the Royal sites of Spain on the La Granja de San Ildefonso:

Yes , is a nice high mountain range, very regal but the palace is smallish even thus it was thought of as a little Versailles. Don’t they all try to match!!! Anyway for the architecture and especially the historical value it is worth the detour. Hope you enjoy it

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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