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<map lat='40.411335' lng='-3.674908' zoom='11' view='3'/>
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Population: 2,900,000 (2016)
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Madrid is the capital of Spain. It is geographically located in the centre of the Iberian peninsular, and thus has road connections to all directions in Spain and also Portugal.

Hitching out

South toward Córdoba, Granada, Algeciras E 5

There is a bus stop just outside the metro station San Cristobal (on line 3, or the "yellow" line) that is good to hitch from (make sure you're on the correct side of the road). There is nowhere else to pull over for several kilometers back toward the city. This same road (Av. de Andalucia) leads South, toward the entrance to the Autovía del Sur highway, which goes to Córdoba and Algeciras.Not far from the entrance to the autovía (maybe only about 5 or 10 km down) is another petrol station. So, you don´t even need to find a ride that is going very far from this point, because you can simply ask to be dropped at the next petrol station on the Autovía del Sur.

As hitching a ride standing on the road is quite difficult in Spain (especially in a big city like Madrid), it is probably better to follow these instructions:

Alternative1: There is a small service station with a McDonalds in Pinto. Takethe Cercania C3 from Sol (or other stations from Central Madrid), should cost nearly 3 euros. Then get off at Pinto. Walk eastwards through several streets towards the motorway, via avenida isabel la catolica. Have a look at hitchwikimaps or googlemaps how to get there. It's around 1.5 km. Once in the service station, ask people. Apparently, there are a lot of people going through towards morocco, so you might get a long distance hitch towards south (although sometimes cars are packed). It might be better than alternative 2 which has little/local traffic

Alternative 2 Christian1337's recommendation: Another option is taking the "cercanias" or "renfe" C-3, which leaves from Sol, to the Station "Valdemoro". The ticket should cost 3,30 € and it takes 30 minutes to get to "Valdemoro". Get off the train and walk down "Paseo de la Estacion", take a slight left onto "Calle República Argentina" (the road right next to the highway) take a right to follow "Calle República Argentina". After 100 meter turn left onto "Avenida de Andalucia" and follow it until you get to the petrol station. In total it is a 30 minute walk (going uphill, exhausting in summer). The petrol station is right next to the highway. There is also a big truck stop. The station has mostly local people (as it has a car wash) and is usually quite empty, but you will find somebody (going to Ocana) who will take you to the next service station.

In any case, try to get to the Sesana service station, it's on the motorway 4, between Valdemoro and Ocana. Although it is small, it has a restaurant, and unlike other service stations in the South of Madrid, you will find long distance rides there (Granada, Cordoba) with some patience.

East toward Valencia, Murcia E 901

Take the metro 9 in the direction Arganda del Rey (it costs 1 euro for regular zone ticket + 1 euro for extra zone, you have to buy 2 different tickets) and get off at the stop Rivas Vaciamadrid.

Go out of the station, on the right pass under the bridge to the roundabout. You'll see some steps that lead to a bridge over the motorway, on the left there is a petrol station + an motorway onramp. Combine using a sign with asking people and be patient.

Northeast towards Zaragoza, Barcelona E 90

Hitchhiking between Madrid and Barcelona is fairly easy, but there are multiple options

  • Go by train or bus to Guadalajara, 50 km away. The journey will cost about 4 euro (4.50 euro from Atocha). Then take a bus to Taracena, a small village several kilometres from Guadalajara (This will cost 1 euro). Just tell the driver that you need to go to the station, a lot of people ask him for that.("Tengo que ir a la estacion de servicio en la autovia") From there you can get to a petrol station next to a bar restaurant, already on the motorway towards Zaragoza and Barcelona. If people are not going too far, try to get a lift to the next petrol station, 15 km away, much bigger and with many trucks.

Steffi and Manu tried this option. It takes a long time to get to the spot (it took us 2h from Atocha), and from the renfe train station in Guadalajara there is (as far as we know) no direct bus to Taracena, you first have to take a bus from the renfe station to the bus station. there the buses may leave only every hour. the petrol station is rather small and, when we were there in winter, there were mostly local cars.

  • The San Fernando hitch point is a cheaper way. Take the train from Atocha in the direction Alcala de Henares or Guadalajara until the station San Fernando near Madrid. The train ticket will cost 1.45 euro. Behind the San Fernando train station there is an entrance to the motorway where you can easily hitchhike.
  • Kacheksja hitched from La Garena. Take the Renfe train number C7 direction Alcala de Hernares or C2 direction Guadalajara from Atoche. Get out on the station named La Garena. When you get out of the station, go right to av. Juan Carlos 1. It later continues in av. de Europa. Then follow the signs saying "A2 Zaragoza". First you see a Shell petrol station (possibility 1 - a bad one, the traffic is low, it's in the city and on the wrong side of the road) then the roundabout that goes onto the highway is possibility 2 (better but still the traffic is low and there is no good place for cars to pull over). The best one is the Galp petrol station. You can access it from the industrial area right behind it - it's a very good hitch - hiking spot, he got a ride offered without asking!

North towards Burgos, Basque Country, Bordeaux E 5

Take the metro to the station Pinar de Chamartín (1 euro). Walk on the street calle Arturo Soria, cross the M-11, follow the street Camino de la Fuente de la Mora, then turn left at the avenida de Manoteras. You can stay directly in front of the train station. NoNastions got a ride there in 20 minutes. There is a traffic light and the cars can stop there, more or less. This is an upper-class office area full of good-looking young people driving Mini and BMW 120d. There is a Cepsa petrol station on the left 300 meters further, but Grégoire didn't find it very welcoming and preferred to stick his thumb out at the end of the street, where he got a ride to another petrol station further on the A1 30 minutes later. Once out of Madrid, safest idea is to request lifts to the various service stations, and simply approach people who drive in and politely ask them for a lift. TallNomad found a lift all the way to Bilbao from a service station/truckstop simply by approaching random strangers with a smile and explaining his journey plan. General waiting time is 30 minutes during the busier hours at a good spot. Avoid the smaller roads, except during tourist season, when loads of sat-navs send travellers on weird routes, and lifts can be found easily enough.

West towards Portugal E 90

Take metro line 6 to the station Alto de Extremadura and then go to the petrol station on the street Avenida de Portugal, which is the A5 highway. From there search for a lift at least to another petrol station at 48 km down the A5. Apparently if you walk 5 minutes down the road on the left there is a place that serves free food at 12.00pm.

Alternatively, it seems like one could easily get to the service station "Polvoranca" on the R5.

You would have simply take the "10" metro line to puerto del sur, about 30 minutes riding away from the city centre, and then walk a kilometre or so down Av. Leganés, splitting off to the petrol station as you can see here from this petrol station, it seems like most of the traffic would be going toward Toledo or Portugal.

Public transport

Madrid has a very extensive well-connected metro system that can help you get in and out of the city; a single metro journey is 2 Euros, and a ride on the cercanías should be between 2.50 and 4 euros. If the guard is not watching, or if the metro station has two entrances, you can usually jump the turnstiles. Once inside, there are few controls. The cercanías, however, have barriers at the entry AND the exit.

More information

  • Hitchbase has some information about getting out of Madrid.