Valencia is the third biggest city of Spain with a population of 800,000 people. Located on the shores of the Mediterranean Sea, it is also the capital of the Valencian Community.
Famous for its oranges, Horchata de chufa (nut milk) and especially for the world-renowned paella which is the most international Spanish dish and is originally from the city of Turia, Valencia is definitely a bucket-list destination.
The city has seen its popularity and number of visitors grow in the past 20 years, due to the construction of La Ciudad de las Artes y las Ciencias (City of arts and science) that was built in between the end of the 20th century and the beginning of the 21st Century.
Valencia holds an important old town with a Cathedral and the Miguelete, that is the crown’s tower also the Serrano and Quart towers and the charming Carmen quarter.
A good time to head to the city is in March, when the city celebrates the Fallas which are the local and worldwide famous “fiestas”. They consist in building giant plasterboard dolls that usually represent satire or social and politic criticism. They are exposed for a few days before being burned after midnight on March 19th.
The beautiful beaches are another one of the attractions of the city; La Malvarrosa located near the city centre is one of the most popular while El Saler on the out skirts is chosen by those who prefer a more peaceful spot.
You can also enjoy days out in the city surroundings such as Gandía and its route of the Borgias, the maritime past of Cullera and its pirate stories. You also have Sagunto and its Roman legacy, the tradition of the Moors and Christians fiestas in Ontinyent or the natural beauty spots of Bocairent, and the majestic castle and noble areas of Xàtiva.
In the first decade of the 21st century, Valencia experienced a huge economic boom, which quickly put the city in between the most cosmopolitan and avant-garde European cities. It was chosen to host the Copa America de Vela (America’s cup) and also the F1 circuit. In terms of football, the city is home of the Valencia FC and the UD Levante having the first of them being twice finalist of the Champions league.
With regards to restaurants, we recommend Riff, an avant-garde and cosy restaurant managed by Bernard H. Knoller, that stands out for its fish all from wild origin and its Mediterranean dishes. Also the Ricard Camarena with an exquisite signature cuisine or the Canalla Bistro from the same owner and international cuisine. Likewise the best tapas spot in town is the Lienzo Valencia that offers seasonal products and a fantastic wine menu that you can enjoy in a bright venue of minimalist design.
The Restaurant Seu Xerea, located near La ciudad de las Artes y las ciencias, in Conde de Almódovar Street offers a wide range of the best Mediterranean cuisine with an oriental touch in a contemporary designed venue. In this restaurant you can find the best local and the best international cuisine merged in a way that only Steve Anderson knows. The manager’s aim is to deliver unique worldwide gastronomic experiences.
Also worth a visit is Navarro restaurant; a traditional spot that has been offering the best local cuisine since 1951. Their products are entirely obtained in both the Central Market and the Ruzafa Market and rice dishes, fish and meat are the most outstanding dishes.
This October interesting gastronomic experiences are waiting for you in the city not to be missed. From the 1st to the 15th October, the Seafood Rice Gastronomy Festival returns, where the restaurants of Las Arenas beach create menus with seafood recipes, Mediterranean produce and rice as the star of the show.
From the 19th to 29th October, good food lovers can also enjoy a date in the city’s best restaurants in the 17th edition of Valencia Cuina Oberta Restaurant Week, with exquisite menus at fixed prices.