Valencia is the capital of the Comunitat Valenciana, and also the third largest city in Spain, just after Madrid and Barcelona. It is well known for its pleasant Mediterranean weather and its delicious cuisine (after all, paella was born here). But Valencia is much more than that: it’s enigmatic and modern, relaxing and festive,traditional yet cosmopolitan.
Here you have the top five reasons why you shouldn’t miss Valencia in your next trip:
- Gastronomy. Valencian food is internationally recognized because of its wide range of options, plus its wonderful taste. Perhaps, its most popular dish is paella but there are dozens of other choices: tapas, seafood, pinchos, wines, sweets and much more. If you are into rice, you’ll love arroz al horno (rice with tomato, garlic and meat),or how about arroz negro (rice with squid ink)? If you are more into typical tapasor seafood, you’d be in paradise, don’t forget to order a fine valencian wine. What about dessert? You’ll enjoy buñuelos or panquemado and you can’t miss having a refreshing orxata with fartons. Believe me, valencian food will make you say: chè, que bò!
- Traditions. Valencia’s most popular festivity is Fallas which take place in march, during this month, the city is covered with fireworks, noise and tourists from everywhere in the world. Semana Santa (Easter) is pretty big as well, and in July you have the Feria de Julio. There are a lot of festivities all year round, so check your calendar to know what you’ll find.
- Sightseeing. Whether you’d like to relax on the beach, to ride a bike through Turia Gardens or to walk around the city, there are plenty of options: Plaza de la Reina, Barrio del Carmen, the traditional markets of Colón and Central, Malvarrosa beach, Albufera National Park, Ciudad de las Artes y las Ciencias(museum, aquarium and IMAX screen), Port of Valencia or go to a match at Mestalla Stadium.
- Night life. Valencians are party animals and they are not afraid to show it. There are four main zones to go partying: the ever present Carmen, located at the old town; Ruzafa, more alternative and surrounded with pubs and restaurants; Aragón, college student’s favorite party district and Marina Port, during summer, the chicest and most luxurious of them all.
- Shopping. Let’s admit it: we all like to shop and in Valencia you have something for every taste and budget. Buy some souvenirs at the local shops and street markets, go shopping to department stores and high street boutiques or go big at designers’ ateliers and jewelry stores.
So there you have it. Plan your trip, pack your things and come to Valencia, the city is waiting for you!