A Local's Guide to Valencia

Eduardo
A Local's Guide to Valencia

Sightseeing

The Cathedral of Valencia is a must-see when visiting the Old Town of Valencia. Shaped like a cross, architecturally speaking it is a truly fascinating building. With 3 distinct entrances, each possessing their own architectural style, there is plenty to see from just the outside alone. Inside, the Cathedral is home to what many believe as the Holy Grail - the cup used by Christ during the Last Supper. Top Tip: If you are feeling active, or want to justify more tapas and wine, climb the Miguelete. This Gothic-style bell tower boasts a whopping 207 steps but we promise that it's worth it for the view at the top!
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Valencia Cathedral
s/n Plaça de l'Almoina
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The Cathedral of Valencia is a must-see when visiting the Old Town of Valencia. Shaped like a cross, architecturally speaking it is a truly fascinating building. With 3 distinct entrances, each possessing their own architectural style, there is plenty to see from just the outside alone. Inside, the Cathedral is home to what many believe as the Holy Grail - the cup used by Christ during the Last Supper. Top Tip: If you are feeling active, or want to justify more tapas and wine, climb the Miguelete. This Gothic-style bell tower boasts a whopping 207 steps but we promise that it's worth it for the view at the top!
A great exemplar of Valencia modernism, this beautiful train station is definitely one to see. More than just a way of getting from A to B, this building is worth visiting purely for the design. Top Tip: Look inside to discover beautiful stained glass windows and a room surrounded by stunning mosaic patterns.
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Estación del Norte
2 Carrer d'Alacant
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A great exemplar of Valencia modernism, this beautiful train station is definitely one to see. More than just a way of getting from A to B, this building is worth visiting purely for the design. Top Tip: Look inside to discover beautiful stained glass windows and a room surrounded by stunning mosaic patterns.
This iconic complex put Valencia on the map as a tourist destination. The 7 buildings were designed by Valencian-born architect, Santiago Calatrava, and include an IMAX cinema, science museum and opera house. Like something straight out of a sci-fi movie, the architecture is like nothing you've ever seen.
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Місто мистецтв та наук
7 Av. del Professor López Piñero
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This iconic complex put Valencia on the map as a tourist destination. The 7 buildings were designed by Valencian-born architect, Santiago Calatrava, and include an IMAX cinema, science museum and opera house. Like something straight out of a sci-fi movie, the architecture is like nothing you've ever seen.
Valencia, once one of the key players in the world's silk economy, still has a rich heritage of silk. For example, during the Fallas festival held every March, you will see people dressed in beautiful silk outfits. The Lonja was one of the most important buildings of the 15th Century acting as the centre of trade for silk. What you will find is palatial halls and majestic columns. Top Tip: The courtyard at the back of the Lonja is a stunning spot, particularly when all of the orange trees are in full bloom.
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Лонха-де-ла-Седа
2 Carrer de la Llotja
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Valencia, once one of the key players in the world's silk economy, still has a rich heritage of silk. For example, during the Fallas festival held every March, you will see people dressed in beautiful silk outfits. The Lonja was one of the most important buildings of the 15th Century acting as the centre of trade for silk. What you will find is palatial halls and majestic columns. Top Tip: The courtyard at the back of the Lonja is a stunning spot, particularly when all of the orange trees are in full bloom.
A short drive out of the city of Valencia (or 30 mins by bus from the city centre) is the natural reserve of Albufera. This is the birthplace of paella. As the largest freshwater lagoon in Spain, this is where you will find all of the land where the rice is cultivated. Top Tip: From the Mirador de Albufera, go on a boat ride at sunset for some of the most stunning views.
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Albufera
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A short drive out of the city of Valencia (or 30 mins by bus from the city centre) is the natural reserve of Albufera. This is the birthplace of paella. As the largest freshwater lagoon in Spain, this is where you will find all of the land where the rice is cultivated. Top Tip: From the Mirador de Albufera, go on a boat ride at sunset for some of the most stunning views.
Often described as the "Venice of Valencia", this little paradise is located just outside of the city. It has the charm of a seaside town from the 1920s and is perfect for an afternoon getaway. Top Tip: If you are a keen cyclist, the 30 minute trip from the city centre to Port Saplaya makes for a leisurely ride!
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Port Saplaya
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Often described as the "Venice of Valencia", this little paradise is located just outside of the city. It has the charm of a seaside town from the 1920s and is perfect for an afternoon getaway. Top Tip: If you are a keen cyclist, the 30 minute trip from the city centre to Port Saplaya makes for a leisurely ride!
Take a stroll along the Turia gardens and you will come to Museu de Belles Arts. This beautiful domed building is home to some of the oldest art in Spain with the biggest Renaissance art collection, second only to the Prado in Madrid. For art lovers, this is a must-see. Top Tip: Check out the Sorolla collection. One of Valencia's most famous painters, Sorolla was famous for capturing the "luz of Valencia", the special glow that is unique to the city.
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Museu de Belles Arts de València
9 Carrer de Sant Pius V
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Take a stroll along the Turia gardens and you will come to Museu de Belles Arts. This beautiful domed building is home to some of the oldest art in Spain with the biggest Renaissance art collection, second only to the Prado in Madrid. For art lovers, this is a must-see. Top Tip: Check out the Sorolla collection. One of Valencia's most famous painters, Sorolla was famous for capturing the "luz of Valencia", the special glow that is unique to the city.
Valencia was once surrounded by an ancient wall (the Christian wall) made up of 12 entry gates. Although the wall was pulled down in the late 1800s, the Torres de Serranos (the main entrance) remains due to its historical importance. At one time, this was the main entry way for the royal road that connecting Valencia to other key cities in Spain. Top Tip: This structure has served many crucial purposes over the years including acting as a prison for nobility and storing the artwork of the Prado during the Civil War!
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Torres de Serranos
s/n Plaça dels Furs
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Valencia was once surrounded by an ancient wall (the Christian wall) made up of 12 entry gates. Although the wall was pulled down in the late 1800s, the Torres de Serranos (the main entrance) remains due to its historical importance. At one time, this was the main entry way for the royal road that connecting Valencia to other key cities in Spain. Top Tip: This structure has served many crucial purposes over the years including acting as a prison for nobility and storing the artwork of the Prado during the Civil War!
The Turia is one of the elements which makes the city of Valencia so special. Formerly a river bed, this 9KM long city park is beloved by locals. Not only does it make the city incredibly lush and green, it is a haven for runners, families, friends getting together for picnics, and events throughout the year. Top Tip: Look for the Puente de Flores. One of the many bridges crossing the Turia, this bridge is adorned with beautiful flowers al year round!
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Turia
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The Turia is one of the elements which makes the city of Valencia so special. Formerly a river bed, this 9KM long city park is beloved by locals. Not only does it make the city incredibly lush and green, it is a haven for runners, families, friends getting together for picnics, and events throughout the year. Top Tip: Look for the Puente de Flores. One of the many bridges crossing the Turia, this bridge is adorned with beautiful flowers al year round!
The largest aquarium in Europe, the Oceanogràfic is one of the most visited spots in Valencia. Part of Calatrava's impressive City of Arts and Sciences, the architecture alone is worth the visit. Apart from that, the aquarium is home to many exciting exhibits including a jellyfish exhibit, dolphin shows and even a 4D shark experience! Top Tip: If you are looking for a unique dining experience, the Submarino Restaurant lets you wine and dine surrounded by fish!
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Акваріум Океанографік
1B Carrer d'Eduardo Primo Yúfera
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The largest aquarium in Europe, the Oceanogràfic is one of the most visited spots in Valencia. Part of Calatrava's impressive City of Arts and Sciences, the architecture alone is worth the visit. Apart from that, the aquarium is home to many exciting exhibits including a jellyfish exhibit, dolphin shows and even a 4D shark experience! Top Tip: If you are looking for a unique dining experience, the Submarino Restaurant lets you wine and dine surrounded by fish!

Food scene

Calling all food-lovers! No trip to Valencia is complete without visiting the Mercado Central - Valencia's Central Market. This is the largest food market in all of Europe and is sure to have your mouth watering with the large range of products available. Explore everything from fresh fruit and vegetables, to hundred of olives, baked goods, jamón, cheese and rice! Don't forget to appreciate the building itself - as one of the most emblematic examples of Valencia's modernist movement, this is a true architectural feat. Look up at the ceiling to see intricate patterns, picturesque domes and stained glass features. Top Tip: Look out for Central Bar, an authentic "Barra" nestled in the heart of the market. This is the informal tapas bar of Valencian Michelin-star chef Ricard Camarena. It is the perfect place to grab a small bite, try some high-quality traditional tapas, or have a glass of wine in an atmospheric location.
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The Central Market of Valencia
s/n Plaça de la Ciutat de Bruges
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Calling all food-lovers! No trip to Valencia is complete without visiting the Mercado Central - Valencia's Central Market. This is the largest food market in all of Europe and is sure to have your mouth watering with the large range of products available. Explore everything from fresh fruit and vegetables, to hundred of olives, baked goods, jamón, cheese and rice! Don't forget to appreciate the building itself - as one of the most emblematic examples of Valencia's modernist movement, this is a true architectural feat. Look up at the ceiling to see intricate patterns, picturesque domes and stained glass features. Top Tip: Look out for Central Bar, an authentic "Barra" nestled in the heart of the market. This is the informal tapas bar of Valencian Michelin-star chef Ricard Camarena. It is the perfect place to grab a small bite, try some high-quality traditional tapas, or have a glass of wine in an atmospheric location.
Behold the humble horchata - a sweet milky drink as perfect for kick-starting your day of sightseeing as it is for well-deserved rest at the end of a busy afternoon exploring. The horchata is unique to Valencia and is made from tiger-nuts or "chufas". These chufas hail from a small town on the outskirts of Valencia called Alboraya. They are typically enjoyed with a "farton" - a long sponge finger dusted with icing sugar. To eat them in the traditional way, dip the farton into the horchata, letting it absorb the liquid. Horchatería Santa Catalina is one of the most traditional places to enjoy this sweet treat. Top tip: Look at the mural when you enter. Not only are the ceramic tiles representative of the region, it shows the story of Valencia's History with King James I reconquering Valencia from the Moors in 1238!
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Horchateria Santa Catalina
6 Plaça de Santa Caterina
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Behold the humble horchata - a sweet milky drink as perfect for kick-starting your day of sightseeing as it is for well-deserved rest at the end of a busy afternoon exploring. The horchata is unique to Valencia and is made from tiger-nuts or "chufas". These chufas hail from a small town on the outskirts of Valencia called Alboraya. They are typically enjoyed with a "farton" - a long sponge finger dusted with icing sugar. To eat them in the traditional way, dip the farton into the horchata, letting it absorb the liquid. Horchatería Santa Catalina is one of the most traditional places to enjoy this sweet treat. Top tip: Look at the mural when you enter. Not only are the ceramic tiles representative of the region, it shows the story of Valencia's History with King James I reconquering Valencia from the Moors in 1238!
Canalla Bistro is the informal restaurant of Michelin-Star chef, Ricard Camarena. As such, it is an exciting fusion of local ingredients inspired by international flavours including Asian and South American Top Tip: Try the Torrija for dessert - a delicious hybrid between a French Toast and a créme brulee
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Canalla Bistro by Ricard Camarena
5 Carrer del Mestre Josep Serrano
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Canalla Bistro is the informal restaurant of Michelin-Star chef, Ricard Camarena. As such, it is an exciting fusion of local ingredients inspired by international flavours including Asian and South American Top Tip: Try the Torrija for dessert - a delicious hybrid between a French Toast and a créme brulee
This is a popular favourite for a traditional Valencian paella - a must-try dish when visiting Valencia. Top Tip: Paella is typically enjoyed for lunch rather than dinner so make sure to book as the place gets very busy around lunchtime! (typically between 2-4PM)
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Restaurante Canela
49 Carrer de Quart
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This is a popular favourite for a traditional Valencian paella - a must-try dish when visiting Valencia. Top Tip: Paella is typically enjoyed for lunch rather than dinner so make sure to book as the place gets very busy around lunchtime! (typically between 2-4PM)
Cafe de las Horas is a Valencian institution known for its Agua de Valencia. This famous drink is a lethal concoction of vodka, gin, cava and fresh Valencian orange juice. With baroque paintings and chandeliers hanging from the ceiling, there is no shortage of character in this bar! Top Tip: Agua de Valencia is served by the carafe so make sure you are ready to drink!
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Cafe de las Horas
1 Carrer del Comte d'Almodóvar
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Cafe de las Horas is a Valencian institution known for its Agua de Valencia. This famous drink is a lethal concoction of vodka, gin, cava and fresh Valencian orange juice. With baroque paintings and chandeliers hanging from the ceiling, there is no shortage of character in this bar! Top Tip: Agua de Valencia is served by the carafe so make sure you are ready to drink!
Almuerzo / Esmorzaret is an art form in Valencia. Picture a big sandwich (a bocadillo), olives, and a beer and here you have a staple mid-morning activity in Valencia. Kiosko La Pérgola is one of the most traditional places to almorzar. In Valencia, it is never too early for a beer or wine! Top Tip: Try a "super bon bon", a bocadillo containing french fries, meat, mushrooms and a paprika and garlic sauce.
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Kiosko La Pérgola
1 Passeig de l'Albereda
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Almuerzo / Esmorzaret is an art form in Valencia. Picture a big sandwich (a bocadillo), olives, and a beer and here you have a staple mid-morning activity in Valencia. Kiosko La Pérgola is one of the most traditional places to almorzar. In Valencia, it is never too early for a beer or wine! Top Tip: Try a "super bon bon", a bocadillo containing french fries, meat, mushrooms and a paprika and garlic sauce.

Neighbourhoods

Ruzafa is known as one of Valencia's trendiest hotspots. Built around the turn of the 20th Century, the narrow streets are a photographer's paradise - plenty of colourful buildings with intricate iron balconies. Aside from this, it is known as having some of Valencia's coolest restaurants and bars. Top Tip: You are never more than a stone's throw away from an amazing restaurant or bar. check out the corners of Carrer Sueca and Carrer Puerto Rico to find lots of bustling bars with great ambience.
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Russafa
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Ruzafa is known as one of Valencia's trendiest hotspots. Built around the turn of the 20th Century, the narrow streets are a photographer's paradise - plenty of colourful buildings with intricate iron balconies. Aside from this, it is known as having some of Valencia's coolest restaurants and bars. Top Tip: You are never more than a stone's throw away from an amazing restaurant or bar. check out the corners of Carrer Sueca and Carrer Puerto Rico to find lots of bustling bars with great ambience.
Formerly the fisherman district of Valencia, this zone of the city is up-and-coming. However, what is truly special about the area is some of the original fisherman houses. This makes it a very interesting area to walk around. Plus, you are right next to the beach! There are lots of trendy spots to have a drink. Top Tip: Check out MerCabañyal - a trendy gastrospace with food trucks and bars
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El Cabanyal
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Formerly the fisherman district of Valencia, this zone of the city is up-and-coming. However, what is truly special about the area is some of the original fisherman houses. This makes it a very interesting area to walk around. Plus, you are right next to the beach! There are lots of trendy spots to have a drink. Top Tip: Check out MerCabañyal - a trendy gastrospace with food trucks and bars
El Carmen is the historic barrio of Valencia, with architecture dating back to 1238! In recent years, it has become known for its street art making it a striking juxtaposition between old and new. Here you will find some of the city's most iconic buildings, from the Cathedral, the the Plaza de la Virgen, to the Lonja de Seda. Top Tip: If you look into the glass outside L'Almoina, you will discover the original Roman ruins of Valencia!
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El Carmen
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El Carmen is the historic barrio of Valencia, with architecture dating back to 1238! In recent years, it has become known for its street art making it a striking juxtaposition between old and new. Here you will find some of the city's most iconic buildings, from the Cathedral, the the Plaza de la Virgen, to the Lonja de Seda. Top Tip: If you look into the glass outside L'Almoina, you will discover the original Roman ruins of Valencia!
Colon is perfect if you are looking for some retail therapy. The main high street is home to all the classic stores from H&M to Zara to Massimo Dutti. The roads leading off the main high street are home to classy boutiques where you are sure to find something you love. Top Tip: Stop for a drink at Mercado Colon. This former market hall is one of the most beautiful buildings in Valencia!
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Carrer de Colón
Carrer Carrer de Colón
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Colon is perfect if you are looking for some retail therapy. The main high street is home to all the classic stores from H&M to Zara to Massimo Dutti. The roads leading off the main high street are home to classy boutiques where you are sure to find something you love. Top Tip: Stop for a drink at Mercado Colon. This former market hall is one of the most beautiful buildings in Valencia!
A little further along the beachfront, you will find Playa Patacona. With its coloured-fronted buildings, this beach town retains the charm of the 1920s. It is a beautiful spot for brunch, coffee and cake or paella by the beach. Top Tip: Stop for a drink at the Chiringuito (bar on the beach front) for a truly chilled out experience
Carrer de la Patacona
A little further along the beachfront, you will find Playa Patacona. With its coloured-fronted buildings, this beach town retains the charm of the 1920s. It is a beautiful spot for brunch, coffee and cake or paella by the beach. Top Tip: Stop for a drink at the Chiringuito (bar on the beach front) for a truly chilled out experience

City/town information

Utiel-Requena is known for its wineries and is one of the most important DOPs (Denominación de Origen Protegida) in the area. Located just 1 hour out of the city (by car) the region is home to some of Valencia's best bodegas, from the most traditional to the truly innovative. Top Tip: One of the most famous grape varietals in Valencia is the bobal so keep an eye out for this grape when doing wine-tastings.
Утьєль
Utiel-Requena is known for its wineries and is one of the most important DOPs (Denominación de Origen Protegida) in the area. Located just 1 hour out of the city (by car) the region is home to some of Valencia's best bodegas, from the most traditional to the truly innovative. Top Tip: One of the most famous grape varietals in Valencia is the bobal so keep an eye out for this grape when doing wine-tastings.