Valencia itself was founded by the Romans in 138 BC and given the name ‘Valentia’. It has been inhabited by the Greeks, Phoenicians, Carthaginians, Romans, Visigoths, Byzantines and in the 8th century the Moors occupied Valencia for 500 years.
There are few cities like Valencia, able to harmoniously combine the remnants of its farthest past, dating to the year 138 BC, with the most innovative and avant-garde buildings from the new millennium. Valencia is trade and culture, cinema, theatre, museums, magic, business. It is the centre of international and avant-garde design, and one of the most active cities in Europe regarding fairs and conferences. Thanks to its location, Valencia has historically been Spain’s Mediterranean port and has that special charm of cities that are also seaports. And the fine sand and clean water, the vastness of the sea and the closeness of the coastal mountains make the Valencian coast uniquely attractive.
The City of Arts and Sciences – architecture at its most futuristic
Barrio del Carmen and its mansion houses – This ancient district of the city grew between two walls; the Islamic and the Christian city walls. A wander through these labyrinthine cobbled streets, lined with towering mediaeval buildings will transport you back in time to another era in history.
Plaza de la Virgen and the cathedral quarter – Twenty-one centuries of history right at the heart of the city, where you’ll find such historical treasures as Valencia Cathedral, the Micalet, the Basilica of the Virgin and the Almoina.
Plaza del mercado y Lonja de la Seda (Silk Exchange) – Immerse yourself in one of Europe’s biggest markets, the Mercado Central, situated inside a jewel of pre-modernista architecture, and enter into one of the most iconic examples of Gothic architecture in Europe, the Lonja de la Seda, declared an Intangible Cultural Heritage site by UNESCO.
Museums – there are 34 museums in Valencia offering art, history, and architecture.
Plaza del Ayuntamiento – In a triangular layout, eclectic architecture, a central fountain and colourful flower stalls brighten the landscape. It’s surrounded by some of the city’s most iconic buildings.
The Royal Marina and beaches – The Juan Carlos Royal Marina is one of the city’s most important landmarks
The Albufera Nature Park - The park is home to the largest lake in Spain and one of the most important wetland areas in the Iberian Peninsula. It is a place of great ecological interest with rare species of wading birds and a rich variety of wildlife.
Bioparc and Oceanografic - The new Bioparc Valencia opened its doors on 28 February 2008. This innovative zoo, in which the barriers are practically invisible and the animals feel right at home, covers some 100,000 square metres and is located in the Parque de Cabecera within the former Turia Riverbed. And, Europe's biggest aquarium has seven different marine environments where almost 45,000 specimens of 500 different species can be seen, such as dolphins, belugas, walruses, sea lions, seals, penguins and sharks.
Valencia International Airport
By Taxi – TeleTaxis are readily available.
Metro – Getting around by metro is really easy: download the metro map or visit www.metrovalencia.com, where you can look up the stops that will be most convenient for you, plan your journey in real time or check and download the timetable. Runs from 05:30 to midnight.
To/from city center – approximately €4 and 20 minutes.
Central European Summer Time (GMT +2)
Standard electrical voltage is 220-240 V AC.
Spanish and Valenciano. English is also spoken.
ATM machines are plentiful on the island.
Averages temperatures in January are 9 C / 48 F with lows around 4 C and highs of 57 F.
Tips are included in all prices and bills, so tipping is not considered obligatory. However, if the service received is considered satisfactory, especially in bars and restaurants, a tip is often appreciated.