There are 7 ways to get from Madrid to Cartagena by train, bus, rideshare, car or plane

Select an option below to see step-by-step directions and to compare ticket prices and travel times in Rome2rio's travel planner.

Recommended option

Train  •  5 h 2 min

  1. Take the train from Madrid-Atocha Cercanías to Cartagena Atr

$60 - $80

Cheapest option

Rideshare  •  5 h 20 min

  1. Take the rideshare from Madrid to Cartagène 277.3 miles

$26

5 alternative options

Bus  •  5 h 20 min

  1. Take the bus from Madrid Estacion Sur to Cartagena

$30 - $50

Drive  •  4 h 32 min

  1. Drive from Madrid to Cartagena 278.8 miles

$50 - $80

Fly to Alicante, train  •  5 h 56 min

  1. Fly from Madrid (MAD) to Alicante (ALC) MAD - ALC
  2. Take the train from San Gabriel (APT.) to Cartagena

$59 - $225

Fly to Almeria, bus  •  7 h 41 min

  1. Fly from Madrid (MAD) to Almeria (LEI) MAD - LEI
  2. Take the bus from Almería to Cartagena

$104 - $330

Fly to Valencia, train  •  7 h 46 min

  1. Fly from Madrid (MAD) to Valencia (VLC) MAD - VLC
  2. Take the train from Valencia Estacio del Nord to Cartagena

$73 - $287

Questions & Answers

Yes, there is a direct bus departing from Madrid Estacion Sur and arriving at Cartagena. Services depart every four hours. The journey takes approximately 5 h 20 min.

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Yes, there is a direct train departing from Madrid-Atocha Cercanías and arriving at Cartagena. Services depart five times a day, and operate Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday. The journey takes approximately 5 h 2 min.

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The distance between Madrid and Cartagena is 391 km. The road distance is 446.1 km.

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The best way to get from Madrid to Cartagena without a car is to train which takes 5 h 2 min and costs .

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The train from Madrid-Atocha Cercanías to Cartagena takes 5 h 2 min including transfers and departs five times a day.

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Madrid to Cartagena bus services, operated by ALSA, depart from Madrid Estacion Sur station.

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Madrid to Cartagena train services, operated by Spanish Railways (RENFE), depart from Madrid-Atocha Cercanías station.

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The best way to get from Madrid to Cartagena is to train which takes 5 h 2 min and costs . Alternatively, you can bus, which costs and takes 5 h 20 min.

Mode details

The quickest flight from Madrid Airport to Alicante Airport is the direct flight which takes 1 h 5 min.

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Madrid to Cartagena bus services, operated by ALSA, arrive at Cartagena station.

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Map of how to get from Madrid to Cartagena.
Launch map view
  • Distance: 244.3 miles
  • Duration: 5 h 2 min

What companies run services between Madrid, Spain and Cartagena, Spain?

Spanish Railways (RENFE) operates a train from Madrid to Cartagena 5 times a day. Tickets cost $60 - $80 and the journey takes 5 h 2 min. Alternatively, ALSA operates a bus from Madrid to Cartagena every 4 hours. Tickets cost $30 - $50 and the journey takes 5 h 20 min.

Airlines
Iberia
Website
iberia.com
Flights from Madrid to Alicante
Ave. Duration
1 h 5 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$80 - $330
Flights from Madrid to Alicante via Ibiza
Ave. Duration
2 h 57 min
When
Friday
Estimated price
$90 - $420
Flights from Madrid to Almeria
Ave. Duration
1 h 10 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$100 - $330
Flights from Madrid to Almeria via Sevilla
Ave. Duration
3 h 10 min
When
Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday
Estimated price
$100 - $330
Flights from Madrid to Valencia
Ave. Duration
1 h 1 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$80 - $380
Flights from Madrid to Valencia via Ibiza
Ave. Duration
2 h 55 min
When
Monday, Tuesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday
Estimated price
$80 - $380
Air Europa
Website
aireuropa.com
Flights from Madrid to Alicante
Ave. Duration
1 h 22 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$75 - $300
Flights from Madrid to Valencia
Ave. Duration
1 h 5 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$70 - $310
Train operators
Spanish Railways (RENFE)

Based in Madrid, Renfe is a state-owned train operator, that connects cities across Spain and neighbouring countries including Portugal, France, Germany, Switzerland, and the Netherlands. Renfe’s extensive network means most destinations offer multiple trains a day, with the most popular routes normally offering a train each hour. Locally known as AVE, the high-speed trains can reach speeds of up to 350km/h, making travel between major cities very efficient. Comfort is key in a Renfe train, with seats with footrests in all three classes of travel: Standard, Club and First. Each seat has an individual light, a pull-down table and an electrical outlet for in Club and First classes. There is free WiFi for first class passengers and for those with a + Renfe card.

Rome2rio's guide to Spanish Railways (RENFE)
Contact Details
Phone
902 320 320
Website
renfe.com
Train from Madrid-Atocha Cercanías to Cartagena
Ave. Duration
5 h 2 min
Frequency
5 times a day
Estimated price
$60 - $80
Website
renfe.com
Train from San Gabriel (APT.) to Cartagena
Ave. Duration
1 h 57 min
Frequency
Once daily
Estimated price
$16 - $27
Website
renfe.com
Train from Valencia Estacio del Nord to Cartagena
Ave. Duration
4 h 1 min
Frequency
3 times a day
Estimated price
$35 - $50
Website
renfe.com
Bus operators
ALSA

A Spanish subsidiary of National Express, ALSA provides bus and coach services across Spain and neighbouring countries including Portugal, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Italy, Poland and Malta. Founded in 1923, ALSA values service and the customer experience. Buses are equipped with communal TV screens showing movies, individual behind-seat screens, ALSA radio, app for books and music, and free WiFi so you’re never bored on your journey. ALSA services are accessible to people with disabilities, and guide dogs are welcome on all journeys. Flexibility is another highlight of an ALSA journey, with three types of tickets on offer - Frequent Traveller Pass, Share Pass and ALSA Pass, along with discounts for senior citizens, students and children.

Contact Details
Phone
+34 902 42 22 42
Website
alsa.es
Bus from Madrid Estacion Sur to Cartagena
Ave. Duration
5 h 20 min
Frequency
Every 4 hours
Estimated price
$30 - $50
Website
alsa.com
Bus from Almeria to Cartagena
Ave. Duration
3 h 45 min
Frequency
Once daily
Estimated price
$23 - $35
Website
alsa.com
BusbamSL
Phone
902 22 72 72
Email
atencionaclientes@busbam.com
Website
busbam.com
Bus from Almería to Cartagena
Ave. Duration
4 h
Frequency
3 times a day
Estimated price
$19 - $35
Schedules at
busbam.com
Other operators
BlaBlaCar.es
Rome2rio's guide to BlaBlaCar.es
Contact Details
Website
blablacar.com
Rideshare from Madrid to Cartagène
Ave. Duration
5 h 20 min
Frequency
5 times a day
Estimated price
$26
Book at
blablacar.es

Want to know more about travelling around Spain

Rome2rio's Travel Guide series provide vital information for the global traveller. Filled with useful and timely travel information, the guides answer all the hard questions - such as 'How do I buy a ticket?', 'Should I book online before I travel? ', 'How much should I expect to pay?', 'Do the trains and buses have Wifi?' - to help you get the most out of your next trip.

More Questions & Answers

Madrid to Cartagena train services, operated by Spanish Railways (RENFE), arrive at Cartagena station.

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Yes, the driving distance between Madrid to Cartagena is 446 km. It takes approximately 4 h 32 min to drive from Madrid to Cartagena.

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Vueling Airlines, Air Europa and Iberia offer flights from Madrid Airport to Alicante Airport.

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Book your Madrid to Cartagena train tickets online with Rome2rio.

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Book your Madrid to Cartagena bus tickets online with Busbud.

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There are 693+ hotels available in Cartagena. Prices start at $54 USD per night.

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Check out Blablacar's carpooling service for rideshare options between Madrid and Cartagena. A great option if you don't have a driver's licence or want to avoid public transport.

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The best way to get from Madrid to Madrid Airport is to train which takes 22 min and costs .

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