The small town of Alcorcon in Madrid has some of the best views of the night sky that you can find in Europe. With minimal light pollution and breathtaking views from the Sierra de Guadarrama mountain range, stargazing in Alcorcon allows you to see constellations and other phenomena like auroras and meteor showers with ease. If you’re looking for great hiking spots, or if you just want to learn more about the nature around you and explore different landscapes, check out these five reasons to hike and stargaze in Alcorcon.
1) Gorgeous nature
Hiking is a great way to get outside, be active, and enjoy the outdoors. With stunning views of nature around every corner, a hike near your house is even better. One such place that offers all of these things is at Alcorcon Lake Park. It’s perfect for beginners because it’s not too challenging, but it still has a good distance for those who want to take on more of a challenge. It also has amazing views of the lake and mountains.
The sky was clear last night when I went out with my friends to see if we could spot any stars or constellations. We ended up staying until 12:30 am so we had enough time to find Orion before heading home!
If you’re looking for a new hiking spot or just want to enjoy nature near Madrid, take a trip out to Alcorcon Lake Park. You won’t regret it!
2) Numerous hiking trails
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You don’t have to look very hard in this hilly borough of Madrid, because it’s well-known for being crisscrossed with hiking trails. Whether you’re looking for a quick workout or leisurely stroll, Alcorcon has something that will suit your needs. Most trails follow rivers and include sections with flat parts that make it easy for those who are not used to the hills.
As for stargazing, you’ll find several spots where you can view spectacular constellations without having to drive very far. One of these spots is next to Lake Tomelloso. When it’s dark, hike up a small hill there and look toward South America. On a clear night, you will be able to see at least 30 starry skies with your naked eye, making it easier for even children or those who are not used to stargazing. The best part is that no telescope is needed!
3) Plenty of parking spaces
Hiking allows you to take in the beautiful surrounding nature of Spain. You can find parks for hiking on each side of the Guadarrama River. They also allow dogs, so be sure you have your leash ready! Parking is a problem in this area, but there are some places where it’s easier. The first option is Parking Valley Norte and the other one is Altorreal.
Another great place to hike is Alto del Trigal. This beautiful mountain is considered one of Madrid’s best viewpoints. You can find it just a short drive from Fuenlabrada, near a small town called Cañada Real Baja. It features an incredible trail and natural areas you won’t want to miss!
A good place for hiking is around Tramacastilla de Turdetania. This is a beautiful natural park near Navalcarnero that offers a spectacular view of Madrid from its highest peak. It’s truly stunning! It can be found easily by taking route N-I until you reach Guadarrama Street, then turning right on Cipriano Andujar Street, then heading left on highway A-40/AP-6.
4) Easy drive from Madrid
Alcorcon is a nice, peaceful town just outside of Madrid with beautiful hiking trails, fabulous mountain views, and unbeatable stargazing opportunities. Plus it’s right next to the Metro so it’s easy to get there by train.
And it’s easy to get around. There are a number of hiking trails that start right at Metro stations, so it’s easy to drive there by train (it takes about 45 minutes from central Madrid) and hit a trail right away. If you’re looking for an activity that is both scenic and challenging—that also happens to be close by!—hiking in Alcorcon is your solution.
The three most popular trails are El Camino de Cintura, El Camino Real del Manzanares, and La Fuente del Berro. All of them follow either rivers or mountain tops. They take anywhere from 3 hours (for shorter hikes) to a full day of hiking for longer trails.
5) Clear skies and no light pollution
Alcorcon is a small town on the outskirts of Madrid. It’s a great destination for anyone who loves hiking but is looking for some peace and quiet, or has always wanted to get into stargazing without worrying about light pollution. There are dozens of hikes you can do around Alcorcon. The Mesa de Santa Cruz hike is the most popular because it’s relatively easy, but there are plenty of other options if you’re looking for something more challenging.
You’ll have no problem finding a spot if you’re not looking for privacy. Just park your car or find a random street with no houses nearby, sit down on your blanket or chair, get comfortable and enjoy watching shooting stars streak across the sky. Because there’s so little light pollution out here, you’ll see up to 100 times more stars than what’s visible in a city environment. If you want an even better view of star clusters and constellations, check out La Granja de San Ildefonso Observatory. It’s a private observatory that hosts public open houses every month from February through October.
The best part about hiking is that it can be done anytime, anywhere – including after work on weekdays or on weekends.
Getting up close with nature is one of the most magical things. Nature allows us to escape from our day-to-day lives and appreciate what is around us. But this becomes more powerful when done during a gorgeous night sky full of stars. Aside from an incredible view, hiking during the night sky allows for a tranquil retreat away from society where we can also gaze at the celestial bodies up above.