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Things to do in Valencia

Things to do in  Valencia

Welcome to Valencia

In trademark Spanish style, Valencia combines Moorish treasures and fabulous food with fiery flamenco, a gorgeous beach, and a museum scene to rival Madrid. Historic highlights come in the form of Torres de Serranos, Valencia Cathedral—home to an agate chalice, which some believe is the Holy Grail and the mummified arm of a saint—and the Silk Exchange (La Lonja de la Seda). First-time visitors can orientate themselves on a walking, bike, Segway, or hop-on hop-off bus tour, to see places such as Plaza de la Virgen, Bioparc Valencia, and the old town. As the birthplace of paella, Valencia offers no shortage of culinary opportunities, with food tours of every kind, including tapas, horchata, wine and—of course—paella, and cooking classes for those who want to get hands-on. Combine a sightseeing tour of Valencia’s historic center with a visit to Central Market (Mercado Central). In the City of the Arts and Sciences complex (Ciudad de las Artes y las Ciencias), buildings reminiscent of science-fiction movies house the Valencia Oceanografic (L’Oceanografic) and Valencia Hemisferic, home to an Imax cinema. Other Valencia must-dos include a flamenco show, a day trip to Albufera Natural Park, and a guided visit of the Lladró Museum, which must be booked in advance. Plus, with fast trains departing for Barcelona, Madrid, and major cities in Andalucia, Valencia serves at a great gateway to the rest of Spain.

Top 10 attractions in Valencia

#1
Serranos Towers (Torres de Serranos)

Serranos Towers (Torres de Serranos)

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The twin stone Serranos Towers (Torres de Serranos), built in the 14th century as Valencia’s main exit toward Barcelona and Northern Spain, are one of only two remaining portions of the original city walls. What once served as prison cells and a triumphal arch are now thought to be the largest Gothic city gateway in Europe.More
#2
Valencia City of the Arts & Sciences (Ciudad de las Artes y las Ciencias)

Valencia City of the Arts & Sciences (Ciudad de las Artes y las Ciencias)

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Situated along Valencia’s old Turia riverbed, the visually striking City of Arts and Sciences (Ciudad de las Artes y Ciencias) was the work of Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava. The spectacular architecture is just part of the appeal of this futuristic complex though, which is also home to a science museum, planetarium, and more—all popular with families.More
#3
Albufera Natural Park (Parque Natural de la Albufera)

Albufera Natural Park (Parque Natural de la Albufera)

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Albufera, south of Valencia, is home to Spain’s largest lake and some of the country’s most scenic wetlands and lagoons. The park’s natural biodiversity features hundreds of native plants and 340 bird species, including rare and endangered ones. Locally grown rice is featured in many regional dishes, such as paella.More
#4
Turia Riverbed Gardens (Jardí del Túria)

Turia Riverbed Gardens (Jardí del Túria)

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Just beyond the borders of Valencia’s old town, bridges cross over a river’s canal. But you won’t find water flowing below those bridges – not anymore, that is -- and instead the Turia Riverbed Gardens (Jardí del Túria).Indeed, until 1957, the River Turia gushed through Valencia. But then a devastating flood prompted citizens to shift the river’s course, diverting the waterway just west of the city. Though this several-kilometer long swath of land was at one time destined for use as a motorway, it was ultimately turned into a garden, making it Spain’s largest urban getaway, and Valencia’s beloved green haven.Along its meandering course, you’ll find all sorts of park paradise. There are fountains and ponds, cafes and climbing walls, and loads of paths for walkers, runners and bikers. Kids will find their bliss at Gulliver Park, a giant playground inspired by its namesake children’s tale. Along the way, centuries-old bridges cross over the slithering greenery, just as they did when this channel filled with water.Perhaps the most famous of the Turia Riverbed Gardens’ sites is the City of Arts and Sciences, which sits at the eastern end of the park, near where the original river arrived at the Mediterranean Sea. Here’s where you’ll come upon a complex featuring a collection of buildings with futuristic architecture, and serving both educational and entertainment purposes. Among them are Europe’s largest Aquarium, and L'Hemisfèric, home to a planetarium, laserium and IMAX theater.More
#5
Valencia Cathedral (Seu)

Valencia Cathedral (Seu)

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Known for its jumble of architectural styles, Valencia Cathedral (also known as the "Seu") is also famous worldwide as the home of the Holy Chalice. While the cathedral’s dome and tower are Gothic, the main entrance is Baroque and some of the chapels date from the Renaissance.Take a tour to learn more about the cathedral’s architectural history and treasures, or just pop in to pay your respects to the Holy Grail in the flamboyant Capilla del Santo Caliz near the main entrance. It’s claimed to be the chalice from the Last Supper.The de Borja chapel boasts some lovely frescoes by Goya and the museum reveals a rich collection of vestments and statues.More
#6
Valencia Central Market (Mercado Central de Valencia)

Valencia Central Market (Mercado Central de Valencia)

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A highlight of Valencia’s Old Town, the Valencia Central Market (Mercado Central, or Mercat Central in Valencian) is also one of the city’s quintessential culinary destinations. Built in 1928 and celebrated for its Art Nouveau architecture, the covered market is one of the largest in Europe, housing hundreds of fragrant food stalls.More
#7
Institut Valencià d'Art Modern (IVAM)

Institut Valencià d'Art Modern (IVAM)

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Contemporary international and Spanish art are showcased at Valencia’s renowned Institut Valencià d'Art Modern (IVAM).Educational courses, workshops and concerts accompany the gallery’s permanent collection, and temporary exhibits are also displayed here.The Centre Julio Gonzalez houses the exhibitions, while the underground Sala de la Muralla hosts temporary shows and highlights the medieval ramparts unearthed during the building’s construction. Central to the collection is the gallery’s display of sculptures and drawings by Miguel Navarro.More
#8
Silk Exchange (La Lonja de la Seda)

Silk Exchange (La Lonja de la Seda)

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One of Valencia’s best-known landmarks, the Silk Exchange (La Lonja de la Seda) is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a symbol of the city. Built in the 15th and 16th centuries as a hub for the city’s silk and commodities traders, the exchange is a marvel of Gothic architecture.More
#9
Valencia Oceanografic (L'Oceanogràfic)

Valencia Oceanografic (L'Oceanogràfic)

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One of several attractions within Valencia’s City of Arts and Sciences, the Félix Candela–designed Oceanografic (L’Oceanogràfic) is not only architecturally impressive. It also ranks among the world’s best aquariums, with more than 45,000 animals representing over 500 species from the world’s main marine ecosystems.More
#10
Bioparc Valencia

Bioparc Valencia

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Located in the northwest of the city, Bioparc Valencia is an immersion zoo, where the barriers between animals and visitors are hidden or removed, and animals of different species reside safely side by side. This creates the sensation of observing animals in the wilds of the savanna, equatorial forest, African wetlands, and Madagascar.More

Trip ideas

How to Spend 1 Day in Valencia

How to Spend 1 Day in Valencia

How to Spend 2 Days in Valencia

How to Spend 2 Days in Valencia

How to Spend 3 Days in Valencia

How to Spend 3 Days in Valencia

Recent reviews from experiences in Valencia

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What an extraordinary night !
LiMei_N, Jul 2021
Valencia City of Arts & Sciences Tour with Rooftop Wine Tasting and Tapas
Sofia is super professional and knowledgeable, and I had the best homemade tapas ever on top 33 floor to see the best view of Valencia!
star-5
Great experience
MONICA_N, May 2021
Fun Segway Valencia Tour
Great experience to visit the old town of Valencia.
star-5
Amazing Valencia bike ride.
Frank_J, Jul 2021
Valencia Bike Tour from the City to the Beach
We were able to see the antique area with churches, plazas, markets and museums.
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History Lesson
Mark_M, Sep 2020
Private City Kickstart Tour: Valencia
He took the time to answer all of our questions, sometimes in both English and Spanish, and even recommended places we could try Valencia’s signature cuisine.
star-5
excellent walking tour
salvatore gioac... v, Dec 2019
Essentials of Valencia and its World Heritage sites
Anais was an excellent guide and she even adapted the tour to allow the group to see a special event that was going on that day: the "Tribunal de las aguas".
star-5
Great Experience and great way to appreciate the City of Valencia
Emmanuel N, Oct 2019
Valencia City Sights Bike Tour
tour bike is the best way to see Valencia.
star-5
Excellent guide
ldavey2012, Sep 2019
All of Valencia Private Bike Tour
This was a perfect way to see Valencia.
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The best wine tour I've ever been on!
hisarai24, Aug 2019
Private Wine Tour with Wine Tasting and Full Lunch
I learned so much about wine and it was amazing to see how the beautiful wine I tried was made.
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Valencia guided tour
Ian T, Jun 2019
Valencia City Sights Bike Tour
There is so much to see and learn in Valencia.
star-5
Amazing valencia
GabbiSoyer, Jun 2019
Valencia City of Arts & Sciences Tour with Rooftop Wine Tasting and Tapas
The views were amazing and to see the sunset was spectacular .
star-5
Great way to see the city
Manisha J, Oct 2018
Grand Valencia Private Segway Tour
The Segway tour was so much fun We had a very short time in Valencia hence this was the perfect way to see the main sites in one morning Miriam was lovely and very knowledgeable A must do when visiting Valencia
star-4
Very nice tour. Quick as Valencia...
alex, Nov 2017
Valencia Hop-On Hop-Off Tour
Quick as Valencia is not that big but a great start to visiting this beautiful city.
star-5
We were almost ready to skip...
loislfu, Jun 2017
Valencia Private Walking Tour
Not only did she give us terrific insight into the history of Valencia, she helped us find and book a new hotel and gave us great tips on what to do, where to eat, and how to enjoy the city.
star-4
First off we want to say we found...
Harold M, Jul 2013
Valencia Hop-On Hop-Off Tour
First off we want to say we found Valencia a very interesting city not only because of the history but the many other attractions in the city.
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The park and opera house
Sam_B, Mar 2020
E-Bike Grand Valencia Private Tour
This is recommended if you want to see the palace of arts along with some gems that may go unnoticed if you were to view the city sans tour.
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Gastro, history & Cuiture
V4980ONdavidt, Sep 2019
The 10 Tastings of Valencia With Locals: Private Food Tour
Great guide Josephine - although local she was born in Wales & speaks good English.
star-5
Fantastic experience!
fd172019, Jul 2019
Valencian Paella cooking class, Tapas and Market Visit
I really enjoyed that it was in the Ruzafa area - so you get to see a totally different area.
star-5
A MUST TOUR when in Valencia!
8surf, Jun 2019
Private City Kickstart Tour: Valencia
MARCO is so informative, knowledgeable, friendly and communicates in English to perfection.
star-5
FAR more wonderful than the humble description
Stephanie P, May 2019
Valencia Shore Excursion: Highlights Tour, Tapas & Wine in 11th Century Monument
The city of arts and sciences is quite spectacular to see as well, and the highest point (literally and figuratively) of this tour was the absolute tapas FEAST that is served to you in the rooftop penthouse of an apartment across the street from the City of Arts and Sciences.
star-5
Excellent introduction to Valencia
andrewhK3454NA, Dec 2018
Valencia Private Walking Tour with Official Valencian Tourist Guide
Sonia spoke excellent English and I would recommend this tour as a start to your visit to the city as you can miss so much with out the information given.

All about Valencia

When to visit

Valencia’s Mediterranean climate means it’s warm enough for the beach even in spring, with the added benefits of fewer crowds and cheaper hotels. Travelers visiting close to Easter should look for the Holy Week (Semana Santa) processions, which are part of the city’s unique maritime-themed celebrations that pair religious pomp with fishing-village culture.

Frequently Asked Questions