By: Priscilla Vera

If you visit Spain, Valencia is undoubtedly one of the best cities to experience the charm of the Mediterranean Sea. As the third largest city in Spain, Valencia is known for its delicious rice dishes, the friendliness of its people, its high quality of life (considered one of the “best cities to live in”) and its famous mascletás.

The tour of Valencia begins in its historic center, surrounded by old buildings and shops. The ideal starting point is the Plaza de la Virgen, recognizable by its famous Turiá fountain, in honor of the court of waters. In the surroundings, you will find the ancient Roman baths and baths in the Archaeological Center of Almoina, where you will learn about the origins of the city. A few meters away, is the Cathedral of Valencia, pay attention to the gargoyles that decorate its facade, they are impressive.

Valencia is famous for two drinks in particular. The first is horchata, but it is not the same as we know in Mexico. In Valencia, horchata is made from tiger nuts and legend has it that it owes its name to King James I of Aragon, who was amazed by the taste of this drink. The second drink that will brighten your day is “El agua de Valencia”, but make no mistake, it does not contain any water. This delicious drink is prepared with orange juice (the Valencia orange is a symbol of the city) and spirits. Cool off with this delicious drink!

Continuing the tour of must-see places, visit the Lonja de la Seda, a building recognized by UNESCO, the Central Market (the largest market in Europe), the Serranos Tower and the Turia River Park. Then, delve into the modernity of the city by visiting the City of Arts and Sciences, an architectural complex that houses museums, artificial lakes, restaurants, and even the largest aquarium in Europe, the Oceanografic. You cannot stop boating or visiting one of its museums. Also, it is one of the best places to take souvenir photos.

A short distance from the City of Arts and Sciences, you can feel the sea breeze and cycle along the promenade. Prepare your swimsuit and umbrella! Rest on the Malvarrosa beach. If your budget allows it, don’t miss the opportunity to eat a paella in front of the sea. The paellas are sold for a minimum of two people (if you go alone, you will have to eat a double portion and pay double, since the price is per person). Try the cuttlefish, eels and calamari, typical seafood of the region.

Get away from the city and visit another must-see place in Valencia: La Albufera, birthplace of paella.
About 40 minutes by public transport, you will arrive at the place where this emblematic dish was invented and where you can enjoy the best sunsets in Valencia. I recommend you get off at the last stop, “El Palmar”, where you can walk through the town surrounded by restaurants that serve the best paellas accompanied by a good wine. After eating, you can take a boat with an approximate cost of 5 euros and explore the surroundings of La Albufera, surrounded by rice fields, endemic birds and enjoying a beautiful sunset. If you visit in the right season, you may be able to see flamingos. This is also one of the best places to buy the famous “arroz bomba” or round rice, used to prepare the different Valencian rice dishes.

Other essential places in Valencia include the Museum of Fine Arts, with free admission, where you can admire some works by the “painter of light” Joaquin Sorolla, The Palace of Communications, right in front of the Town Hall, this beautiful building houses temporary exhibitions and has free entrance. Don’t miss a walk through the Plaza de la Reina and the Nord Train Station, the latter with a façade decorated with oranges and azares on the occasion of Valencian agriculture. Finally, visit the church of San Nicolás, with its impressive baroque frescoes.

Valencia is a city full of history, culture, flavors and beauty. Explore its historic center, marvel at the modernity of the City of Arts and Sciences, relax on the beach and savor an authentic paella in La Albufera. Two days in Valencia are enough to leave you with unforgettable memories and the desire to return. Do not miss it!

Practical information for your visit:

Important dates: If you visit this city during the month of March, don’t miss “Las Fallas”, a festival where you will find sculptures of all shapes and sizes, which will be burned as a celebration. On June 24, they celebrate San Juan, where a night of bonfires on the beach is a must to welcome the summer solstice. During the month of December, do not miss the typical seasonal sweets.

Transport: With the same card, you can move around all public transport in Valencia (Buses, Tram, Metro). The cost of the ticket is 1.50 euros, but I recommend you buy the package of 10 trips for 4 euros, in one of the machines, since you will save a lot of money.

The bus to La Albufera: take EMT line 24 in front of the Puerta del Mar roundabout.
To Malvarrosa Beach: Tram lines 4 and 6, metro 5 and 7, and buses 19, 31 and 32.

Language: Don’t be surprised if you don’t hear people speaking Spanish, or the informative signs are in another language; It is “El Valenciano” a sister language of Catalan that is very easy to understand. Everyone is very friendly, so if you speak in Spanish, they will answer you in Spanish.

Food: The must-sees of Valencia are its rice dishes (they don’t call it Paella) and if you try this dish, remember that it is eaten with a huge spoon straight from the paellera (the large dish where it is prepared) so when the waiter put it on your table, start to taste this delicious dish (by the way, the classic is prepared with rabbit, and it is different from what we eat in Mexico).

The Santa Catalina horchata in the historic center is locally recognized, but you will come across many more places to try this drink.


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