Swap Barcelona for Valencia: Less Crowds, Same Spanish Charm

ByAndrea Thompson

April 25, 2024

Valencia, the vibrant coastal city of Spain, is a treasure trove of culture, cuisine, and sun-soaked beaches. This Spanish city manages to clock up over 1.3M TikTok views, showcasing stunning architecture, mouth-watering food markets, and vibrant nightlife.

Valencia is steeped in history, with its roots tracing back to 138 BC. The city’s architecture is a testament to its rich past, with landmarks like the Valencia Cathedral, whose walls and doors protect valuable works of art and treasures, including the Holy Chalice.  Believed by many to be the true Holy Grail, which is kept in one of the Cathedral’s chapels.

La Lonja de la Seda, a UNESCO World Heritage site, also known as the Silk Exchange.  A late Valencian Gothic architectural building which has a rich historical significance. The Old Town is a maze of cobbled streets, colourful buildings, street art and of course shops.

Then we visit the modern architectural achievement, the Futuristic City of Arts and Sciences.  This iconic landmark for innovation was designed by Santiago Calatrava and considered to be one of the 12 treasures of Spain.

  • L’Hemisfèric: This iconic structure houses an IMAX Cinema and planetarium. Its design resembles a giant eye, and the bottom of the surrounding water pool is made of glass, creating the illusion.
  • Science Museum: Located in a spectacular building, the Science Museum offers interactive exhibitions where touching is permitted. Visitors can engage in fascinating hands-on experiments.
  • Oceanogràfic: This remarkable aquarium and largest in Europe reproduces various ecosystems found on our planet, showcasing an astounding diversity of flora and fauna.
  • Palau de les Arts Reina Sofía: With its spectacular oval-shaped design, this venue hosts operas, concerts, and stage performances.
  • L’Àgora: The most recent addition to the complex, L’Àgora is a multifunctional space suitable for various events.

Valencia is the birthplace of Paella, the iconic rice dish.  For an authentic taste, visit one of the many beachside restaurants or try the Mercado Central which also serves seafood, tapas, and the best Paella Valencian made from either chicken, pork, rabbit and even snails.

Those who partake in a tipple, try the local “Agua de Valencia”, the city’s most iconic cocktail.  Made from fresh orange juice, vodka, gin, and cava.  A zesty mix which sums up Valencia’s essence but please drink responsibly.

With year-round sunshine and 20 km of beaches it is a sun-seekers haven and a city that offers a perfect mix of history, innovation, culinary delights, and beachside relaxation. So, pack your bags, and get ready to explore the wonders of Valencia.