El Tren de la Fresa or the Strawberry Train is an excursión train operated over the RENFE line between Madrid and Aranjuez, constructed in 1851 as the second railway line in Spain. The original purpose of the railway was to connect Spain’s capital with the Royal Palace of Aranjuez. It was called the "Tren de la Fresa", the "Strawberry Train," as it originally went past vast fields of strawberries en route. Fresa con Nata (Strawberries with whipped cream) is a speciality produce of the town.
The excursions run from Spring (late April or early May) until the late June or early July and then again from mid-September to mid-October. The train departs from the Railway Museum (which is near Atocha), arriving 50 minutes later in Aranjuez . The return journey departs from Aranjuez at 18:25, arriving in Madrid at 19:15.
The train is ordinarily pulled by a steam locomotive and includes 6 wooden coaches of 19th century vintage but for the 2013 season RENFE has declared that a conventional electric or diesel locomotive will be used to pull vintage carriages.
The ticket includes a guided visit to the historic part of Aranjuez and the beautiful gardens and palace All passengers receive a plate of the famous delicious local strawberries en route from hostesses on the train, dressed in the period costume of the Spanish 19th century.
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