It's not much of a challenge to promote Valencia, the city and province, as a tourist destination. The third-most populous urban area in Spain with 1.8 million people, after Madrid and Barcelona, just about has it all. Nestled on the idyllic Costa del Azahar, Valencia could attract crowds on the merits of climate and geography alone.
Valencia stands apart for other reasons besides beach and sunshine however. With a frenetic nightlife and modern attractions, the city offers cosmopolitan contrasts to ancient landmarks, historic medieval quarters and UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Toss in a culinary heritage that gave rise to paella, the de facto national dish of Spain, and wonderful provincial countryside and you have one extraordinary city and province.
- La Lonja – A well-preserved example of gothic architecture.
- Plaza del Ayntamento – The largest and most impressive square in Valencia.
- Iglesia Santos Juanes – An ancient church with an impressive baroque façade.
- Banos Almirante – Reformed, olden Arab baths.
- Monastery Tres Reyes – A huge monastery dating back to the 13th century.
Valencia Art & Culture
- City of Arts and Sciences – Home to Spain’s largest interactive science museum.
- MUVIM – The Museum of Enlightenment and Modernity takes tourists from the Middle Ages to the present day.
- National Museum of Ceramics – An ancient palace filled with ceramic works of art.
- Valencia History Museum – This museum tells the story of the countless cultures that have inhabited Valencia over the centuries.
- Jose Benlliure House Museum – The furnished house of a well-known Valencian painter.
- Nuevo Centro – A large shopping complex featuring a range of shop selling reasonably priced goods.
- El Saler – A beautiful shopping centre featuring shops selling well-known labels.
- Galeria Don Juan de Austria – Home to a classy shopping experience.
- Mercado Central – One of Europe’s oldest markets, which sells authentic Valencian produce at affordable prices.
- Paseo Maritimo – Located on a stunning promenade along the beach, this market offers a diverse range of stalls selling clothing, accessories, souvenirs and much more.
Gay & Lesbian Valencia
- Dona Dona – A popular lesbian bar, open Wednesdays to Saturdays.
- Som Com Som – A lesbian bar featuring lively music and all the latest drinks.
- Sant Miquel Café – A gay-friendly restaurant turned music bar in the evening.
- Q Art! Café – A restaurant which opens in the early morning and gradually gets livelier as the day fades into night.
- Pub Base – A venue for the more mature gay tourist to Valencia.
- July Fair – Held in July, this cultural programme has been designed to entertain locals and tourists with various concerts, theatre performances, open-air cinema showings, traditional fiestas, sports events and bullfighting.
- Fair of the Nations – A month-long event held in May in the Turia river-bed. An open-air leisure ground in which visitors can purchase ethnic souvenirs, try international cuisines and listen to music acts.
- Turia Gardens – A beautiful garden home to children’s playgrounds, green mazes, spectacular fountains and stunning buildings.
- Jardin Botanico – A botanical garden home to the flora of five continents and the perfect place to take a stroll in the sun.
- Almoina – The open-air excavations of the Roman part of Valencia.
- Check out the skills of Valencia's football club at their large home ground, the Mestalla stadium.
- Watch the Levante UD football club play their games at the Estadi Ciutat de València.
- See expert golfers in action at the El Saler Golf Club.
- Enjoy watching Pamesa Valencia slam dunk at the Pabellón Municipal Fuente San Lluís de Valencia.
- Catch a bullfight at the Plaza de Toros.
AttractionsCity of Arts and Sciences
Known as the Ciutat de les Arts i les Ciències in Valencian, the premier modern landmark in the city is a phenomenal example of contemporary architecture. Built in 1996, the brilliant and immense complex contains a performance hall, opera house, IMAX cinema, planetarium, science museum, oceanographic park and lush gardens.Valencia Cathedral
With a consecration in 1238, Saint Mary of Valencia Cathedral is one of the most austere landmarks in the city. Built upon a mosque, the architecture is a beautiful mishmash of Gothic, Romanesque, Renaissance and Baroque design aesthetics. The interior contains many important works of art and historical relics.Benimaclet
To get a taste for authentic Valencian village life, the town of Benimaclet, in effect part of the city proper, is a great destination. The ancient Moorish settlement still maintains an independent spirit, as a popular student and immigrant neighbourhood, where Valencian is still the lingua franca.Barri del Carme
The traditional old quarter of Valencia is a must-see area of the city. Like many medieval sections of Europe, the district has trendy bohemian appeal today, replete as it is with outdoor cafés, restaurants and shops.The Llotja
The foremost UNESCO World Heritage Site in Valencia was once ground zero for the ancient silk trade in the Mediterranean.
The main event on the calendar in the province is without a doubt, Las Fallas. The March festival takes place over one week and features a parade of miniature city landmarks, fireworks displays, food and wine vendors and traditional concerts.Holy Week
Holy Week, or La Semana Santa Marinera, is a merry period of revelry that leads up to more sober Easter observances, every April.El Palau de les Arts Reina Sofía
The superlative performance hall in the City of Arts and Sciences puts on a regular program of opera and classical music throughout the year.Tomatino de Bunol
In late August the town of Bunol, a mere 40 km from Valencia, transforms into a giant battleground, as more than 30,000 people engage in a food fight of epic proportions to herald the annual tomato harvest.
Valencia, both the province and city, has a rather enviable Mediterranean climate. The fall and spring months do receive occasionally violent thunderstorms.
- Winter (December to February) 7-17°C
- Spring (March to May) 9-23°C
- Summer (June to September) 18-29.5°C
- Fall (October to November) 10.5-23.5°C
Valencia & Province official guide
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