What to do on a Sunday in Zaragoza?

Zaragoza is a city located in the northeastern part of the Iberian Peninsula; it is also the capital of the autonomous community of Aragon. It has a population of about 618,877 inhabitants, according to the INE of 2020. In addition, it is located on the banks of the rivers Ebro, Gallego, and Huerva and the imperial channel of Aragon, about 300 km from Madrid.

Zaragoza offers both tourists and local inhabitants an artistic and architectural heritage, green areas, and many leisure activities to enjoy with friends and family; among them, we have the Basilica del Pilar, the Aljaferia Palace, the Longa de Zaragoza, the Cathedral of the Savior, the Museums, the Roman Theater, the Aquarium, the Amusement Park, the Parque Grande, the Monasterio de Piedra and much more.

Another option is to book a private tour, by car or on foot; or you can also buy a ticket on the sightseeing bus because they have an audio guide in Spanish. If you have no idea what you can do on a Sunday in Zaragoza, here are some alternatives.

Historical and emblematic buildings of the city of Zaragoza:

The Beautiful Basilica del Pilar: baroque style and dating from the 17th century. The real name is Catedral Basílica de Nuestra Señora del Pilar, but it is also called Santo Templo Metropolitano de Nuestra Señora del Pilar de Zaragoza. This Virgin is also the Patron Saint of the Hispanic World, reflecting this in the internal part of the Basilica with the presence of several Latin American flags.

It is built over other temples that existed at the time. In addition, the legends surrounding this Basilica are that this was the place where the Virgin appeared to Santiago, the apostle; the other is that thanks to her, the bombs that fell on it did not explode; a miracle.

In the Plaza del Pilar, La Lonja de Zaragoza: located between the Plaza la Seo and the City Hall, we are talking about the first Renaissance building in the city, with Spanish Renaissance architecture. A place where exhibitions are held for a defined period, changing every 2 or 3 months; the most surprising thing is the ceiling.

 Formerly it was a meeting of merchants; besides, the entrance is free. It also has a room where the different weapons of the city were kept in its time. Another important aspect is that the columns are the remains of the Roman wall, which were also used as a quarry for the city’s buildings. There is a coat of arms on its borders; it is the coat of arms of Zaragoza.

The AljaferĂ­a Palace or Palace of Joy: is a palace dating from the eleventh century and was built by Al Muqtadir, who served as the residence of the Hudi kings of Saragusta, which was an Andalusian dynasty originally from Yemen. 

This palace went from an Islamic fortress to Mudejar, then to the hands of the Catholic Monarchs, then it was used as a prison at the time of the Inquisition. A military barracks, and today, it is the seat of the Cortes de Aragon. It is a magnificent building, with its Mudejar-style wood carvings and, above all, the throne room of the Catholic Monarchs.

Recreational activities for the whole family on a Sunday:

The incredible Aquarium of Zaragoza: a fascinating live exhibition on education and teaching of the diversity of both fauna and flora of the Amazon, Nile, Murray-Darling, Mekong, and Ebro rivers; in this way, you can learn about the habitats of the different areas of the planet.

You will find sharks, tortoises, frogs, caimans, otters, crocodiles, fish, and a good diversity, of more than 6000 animals. In addition, it is said to be the largest aquarium on the European continent. Among its special activities are scuba diving or snorkeling dives at the level of the central tank, guided tours, and educational workshops, among others, such as birthday celebrations. 

The famous Amusement Park of the city of Zaragoza: is an activity that all family members can enjoy, regardless of age, since it has attractions for children, teenagers, and adults in general. The facilities have a little more than 60,000 square kilometers; that is to say, 6 hectares, and it opened its doors in 1974.

It is located at the level of the city’s green lung, in the central area of Pinares de Venecia, and has become an important place of leisure for the nearby regions and Aragon for more than 40 years. It also has restaurants, cafeterias, gardens, swimming pool, among others.

The Laser Space amusement center: we are talking about an amusement center with several activities based on laser games; some call it laser tag. A space with an extension of 200 square meters, the shooting simulator, the laser labyrinth, and the black box, including the latest generation vests and laser guns, are practiced.

There is also a ballpark for the little ones. If you wish and want to make a different celebration with friends or family, you can have bachelor parties, birthdays, or any other event.

Activities to enjoy outdoors:

JosĂ© Antonio Labordeta Park or Parque Grande: we are talking about one of the green lungs of Zaragoza, which was inaugurated in 1929 and is surrounded by the Canal Imperial de AragĂłn and the Huerva River. The park has 44 hectares, being in second place after the Water Park. 

It has eight ornamental fountains, two beautiful lakes, nine drinking fountains, 22 sculptures in honor of Greek gods and kings, and plenty of places to rest. In addition, you can ride the park train, visit the ceramics and ethnology museums or the Botanical Garden, ride a bicycle, exercise, or play sports, among other activities.

The Monasterio de Piedra Park: this natural park is located on the outskirts of Nuévalos, where the Piedra River flows, forming waterfalls and lakes, approximately 1 hour from Zaragoza. A group of Cistercian monks in the 12th century founded a monastery in this place; the entrance to the park is made by crossing it.

Then, you can visit the Romanesque abbey, the church, the chapter house, the kitchen, and some remains of the monastery, such as the wine museum. There are also the offices, where you will be informed about the caves and the trails to the different waterfalls of Baño de Diana, La Caprichosa, La Cascada de Chorreadero, and La Cola de Caballo, which is the highest, about 90m. Likewise, towards Lake Espejo.

The Balcony of San Lazaro: next to the Stone Bridge is one of the most beautiful viewpoints of the city of Zaragoza. From this point, you can enjoy the view of the Ebro River, the Seo, the Basilica del Pilar, and the Stone Bridge. Ideal for taking the best pictures and enjoying a quiet sunset.

This Balcony of San Lazaro arose thanks to the reforms in 2008 of the Expo, so it is recent, but what it does have antiquity are the foundations; the wall that surrounds the Ebro dates from 1777, which was built to prevent flooding of the city. Its name is due to the convent of San Lázaro; some remains remain near the Balcony.

Posted in Europe, Spain, Zaragoza.
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