Getting to know Valencia
What you can do for free in Valencia
- Visit Malvarrosa Beach
Playa de Malvarrosa is the most popular beach in Valencia, both for the locals and the tourists, so you can definitely expect a bit of a crowd here, depending on when you’re visiting as well. This beach is located about 15 minutes from the city center, and it also has a wonderful promenade that you can stroll along.
- Explore the El Carmen neighborhood
Barrio del Carmen is where you’ll get the most authentic old town vibes in all of Valencia. This is the historical center of Valencia, and it has a rich history, which you can definitely tell by admiring the architecture.
- Enjoy the Jardí del Turia park
If you’re looking to reserve a day in your trip to Valencia for a relaxing, peaceful stroll through nature, write down the Turia gardens on your list. Here you’ll find historic buildings, gardens that resemble mazes, ponds, even some terraces where you can serve some food or a coffee. There’s something for everyone in this wonderful park.
Top spots to visit
- Central Market of Valencia
Mercado Central is a public market that you can find around, you guessed it, the center of Valencia. You can visit this intricate place to admire the architectural style (one of the main works of Valencian Art Nouveau), and to actually shop for food, souvenirs or even sit down and have a meal at one of the restaurants that can be found inside.
- Bioparc Valencia
This is one very large zoo that you can visit while on your Valencia vacation. It occupies 10 hectares and it has an extensive collection of African fauna. This could be a great idea for your holiday, especially if you are bringing kids along.
- Ciudad de las Artes y las Ciencias
The City of Arts and Sciences is one of the most important tourist destinations in Valencia. It is a cultural and architectural complex, and it is made up of 9 buildings and structures. Visitors can check out L’Hemisfèric, Museu de les Ciències Príncipe Felipe, L’Umbracle, L’Oceanogràfic, Palau de les Arts Reina Sofía, Montolivet Bridge, Assut de l’Or Bridge, L’Àgora and the Valencia Towers. Oceanogràfic Valencia is the biggest aquarium in Europe.
Hidden spots to visit
- Baños del Almirante
Baños del Almirante is a Mudejar building that is located next to the Palace of the Admirals of Aragon, in the historic center of Valencia. Despite having been built in Christian times, they are baths similar to steam baths or hammams typically characteristic of Islamic architecture. They were built in the 14th century and were used until the 20th century.
- Jardín de Monforte
These gardens are not as popular as the Jardí del Turia, but they are definitely exquisite, and they are the last standing 19th century historical-artistic gardens in Valencia. Walk its paths and you’ll find lovely statues, mazes, ponds, a palazzo, roses and many idyllic spots.
- Garrofera Beach
If you’re not the biggest fan of crowds but still feel like visiting a nice beach, you don’t have to go to Malvarrosa beach. Instead, find the more secluded Garrofera beach and enjoy its beautiful sands and the sun in peace. The beach is located in the heart of the L’Albufera Nature Park, which means you can also start exploring the surroundings and discover more beautiful spots all around you.
Try out Mediterranean, Spanish and European cuisine while in Valencia. Check out mouth-watering dishes at Arrocería El Rek, El Reno, Arroceria Maribel, Restaurante Hele Berger or Restaurante Nou Chocomeli. There are many options for restaurants all around Valencia, so you’ll definitely find some great choices near your hotel, or around the spots you’re visiting. Check online for reviews before making your choice to make sure you will have the best experience.
Recommended time for visiting
Valencia is a great choice for a spring vacation. During the autumn and winter time, the beautiful nature attractions, such as the parks, are not as impressive as when everything is in bloom, and during the summertime the weather can get quite uncomfortable, especially if you’re not too keen on high humidity and temperatures. If you’re not that bothered by the heat, June to August is the best time to visit Valencia for the festivals, although Las Fallas, Valencia’s biggest festival, happens in March. Keep in mind that the summer comes with higher hotel rates as well.
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