Valencia is a vibrant and beautiful city on the Mediterranean coast of Spain, famous for its futuristic architecture, rich culture, and delicious cuisine. In this guide, we will reveal the secrets of Valencia, from its popular attractions to its off-the-beaten-path places.
The City of Arts and Sciences is one of the wonders of Valencia, a spectacular complex of contemporary buildings that contain a museum, an aquarium, a planetarium, an opera house, and a park. This is a must-see for anyone interested in science, art, and architecture, as well as for families with children who will love the interactive exhibits and the marine life. You can devote a whole day to seeing the different attractions, or just gaze at the wonderful views of the complex from the outside.
Another highlight of Valencia is the historic center, where you can find many monuments, museums, and churches that reflect the city’s rich past. Some of the most impressive places are the Cathedral, the Silk Exchange, the Central Market, and the Torres de Serranos. You can also walk around the tiny streets and squares, where you will encounter many shops, cafes, and bars.
If you want to soak up the Mediterranean sun and sea, Valencia offers several beaches to pick from, both in the city and close by. The most well-known ones are Malvarrosa and Las Arenas, which are readily accessible by public transport and have many facilities and services. If you prefer a more natural and quiet setting, you can head to El Saler or Pinedo, which are part of the Albufera Natural Park, a wetland area with a large lake and diverse wildlife.
One of the best ways to explore Valencia is by bike, as the city is flat and has many bike lanes and paths. You can rent a bike from one of the many companies in the city, or use the public bike service Valenbisi. One of the most enjoyable routes is along the Turia Gardens, a green park that runs along the former riverbed of the Turia River, which was diverted after a flood in 1957. You can also cycle to the beach, the City of Arts and Sciences, or the Albufera Natural Park.
No trip to Valencia would be complete without tasting some of the local dishes, especially the famous paella, which originated in this region. Paella is a rice dish cooked with meat, seafood, or vegetables, and seasoned with saffron and other spices. The traditional Valencian paella is made with chicken, rabbit, and green beans, and is usually eaten on Sundays or special occasions. Other typical dishes include fideu, a similar dish made with noodles instead of rice, all i pebre, a stew of eel and potatoes, and esgarraet, a salad of roasted peppers and salted cod.
For dessert, you can try horchata, a refreshing drink made from tiger nuts, and fartons, sweet pastries that are dipped in the horchata. You can also enjoy oranges, which are grown in the region and are famous for their sweetness and juiciness.