A vibrant city, with the glistening Mediterranean coastline on its doorstep. Combine culture and beach on holidays to Valencia. Start in the historic centre, which is bursting with character. Then escape to the Valencian coast, for a relaxing beach escape.
Spend some time exploring the old town, with its striking architecture, World Heritage sites and souk-like streets – which provide a glimpse into the city’s Moorish past. If you visit this area in the day, make sure you come back after-dark, when the cafes, bars and restaurants are abuzz. Dining out and socialising are a big part of Valencia’s culture, with tantalising tapas and long, leisurely meals a daily occurrence. Head to the Marina Beach Club at any time of day, the seafront’s most stylish venue. And don’t forget the paella: your trip wouldn’t be complete without sampling it the Valencian way.
Valencia is a great city for shopping, with its designer stores, high street favourites and one of a kind boutiques. Start at Calle Colon, which is home to the famous El Corte Ingles department store. Then peruse boutiques along Calle Sorni and Calle Cirilo Amoros or head to Calle Poeta Querol ‘the golden mile’, which is bursting with designer shops. The city’s trendiest shopping area is Ruzafa. Mingle with the hipsters as you hunt for vintage clothes, homeware or local artwork.
Create your own Valencia itinerary on the Valencia hop-on hop-off bus tour, which covers all of the top attractions. Or hire a bike and see the sights of the city by bicycle. Valencia is home to breathtaking architecture, as elegant art nouveau buildings and futuristic towers sit side by side. You’ll also find an impressive selection of museums and galleries. Visit Spain’s second-largest art collection, which is housed in a beautiful 17th-century convent at the Museo de bellas Artes.
Bar-hop and sample traditional Spanish tapas around the old town, Ciutat Vella. Catch a tram and head to the coast for delicious seafood – dine on the beach or at the restaurants that line the seafront. Mingle with the hip and trendy in Ruzafa, which is bursting with bohemian eateries and elegant bars. Or treat yourself to an exquisite meal at one of the city’s four Michelin-starred restaurants.
Valencia’s characterful culture is represented by its diverse nocturnal scene. Enjoy live flamenco at Barrio del Carmen in Ciutat Vella or enjoy pre-dinner drinks and smooth jazz sounds at Las Animas Café Bar. Absorb the relaxed vibe of Ruzafa, a trendy area with a boho feel. Enjoy a laidback evening at Ubik Café, an eclectic café-cum-bookshop or sip delicious cocktails at Parisian-cabaret-themed Café Tocado.
The Valencia region, on Spain’s east coast, boasts miles of white-sand beaches. Lounge on the wide sands of La Malvarossa or enjoy the city’s Marina Beach Club, where you can order their signature 'Aguas de Valencia' cocktail. Sample traditional Valencian paella around Playa de las Arenas or absorb the traditional feel of Pinedo Pueblo Beach.