Valencia, Spain is a city rich in culture, history, and of course, delicious food. Known for its iconic architecture, including the futuristic Ciudad de las Artes y las Ciencias (City of Arts and Sciences) by famous Spanish architect, Santiago Calatrava and the traditional La Lonja, Valencia is a must-visit destination for any architecture lover. In addition to its architectural wonders, Valencia is also a food lover’s paradise, home to world-renowned dishes such as paella and horchata. In this travel guide, we’ll explore the best places to eat and drink, as well as the must-see architectural sights in Valencia. So pack your bags and let’s dive into the vibrant city of Valencia!
Start your journey in Valencia with a hop-on hop-off bus tour
One of the best ways to see Valencia is by taking a hop-on hop-off bus tour. While this may seems very touristy, this kind of circuit allows you to easily explore the city at your own pace and see all the major sights and landmarks. The bus tour also provides commentary on the history and culture of Valencia, making it a great way to learn about the city. The route is designed to take you to all the major attractions, such as the Ciudad de las Artes y las Ciencias, the Ciutat Vella, the Mercat Central de València, and the Cathedral of Valencia, among others. This way, you’ll be able to see the best that the city has to offer and make the most of your time here.
Mercat de Colón
The Mercat de Colón is a must-visit for foodies. Visitors can find a variety of restaurants and cafes within the market. The market is also home to many local artisans, selling traditional souvenirs and crafts, so it’s a great place to pick up a few gifts to take home.
Have the best fish and seafood feast at Ostras Pedrin in Valencia
For seafood lovers, Ostras Pedrin is a must-visit. This restaurant is known for its delicious oysters, luxurious tinned fishes and other seafood dishes. The restaurant is located in the heart of Valencia, in the El Carmen neighborhood, which is known for its lively atmosphere and great restaurants. The menu at Ostras Pedrin is simple but delicious, and the staff is friendly and knowledgeable. This is a great place to try some traditional Spanish food in a very relaxed and contemporary atmosphere.
Explore the Valencian architecture marvel that is Ciudad de las Artes y las Ciencias
The Ciudad de las Artes y las Ciencias is a must-see architectural wonder in Valencia. This futuristic complex includes several buildings, including the Hemispheric, the Museum of Sciences, and the Palace of Arts. The architecture is truly impressive, and visitors can also enjoy a variety of exhibits and shows within the complex.
Exploring the narrow streets of Ciutat Vella in Valencia
The Ciutat Vella, or Old Town, is the historic center of Valencia. Visitors can explore the winding streets and squares, and see a variety of historic buildings, including the Cathedral of Valencia and the Basilica of the Virgin. It’s also a great place to find local shops and restaurants.
Eat your way through the aisles of Mercat Central de València
The Mercat Central de València is a must-visit for foodies and anyone interested in local culture. It is the largest covered market in Europe and is a true reflection of the city’s culinary heritage. Visitors can find a wide variety of fresh fruits, vegetables, meats, and seafood from local vendors. The market is also home to a diverse range of food stalls where you can try traditional Valencian dishes such as paella and horchata. The market’s architecture is also worth noting, with its iron and glass structure, it is considered one of the most beautiful markets in Spain. The market is open every day of the week, so you’ll be able to visit it no matter when your trip is.
Try Japanese coffee at The Coffee in San Vicente Mártir area
The Coffee San Vicente Mártir is a must-visit for coffee lovers. This Japanese coffee shop serves some of the best coffee in Valencia, and it is known for its cozy atmosphere and friendly staff.
Drink horchata and eat churros at Orxateria Santa Catalina
For those looking for a refreshing drink, the Orxateria Santa Catalina is a great option. This traditional Valencian shop serves delicious horchata, a sweet drink made from tiger nuts. Make sure to get the churros along with your drink!
Get fresh orange juice from Carrefour market
Another refreshing drink that you should try is a fresh orange juice from Carrefour market, this juice is a great way to start your day, or to refresh yourself after a long walk around the city. You haven’t tried orange juice until you have yourself a bottle of freshly squeezed Valencian oranges.
Soak up the sun and dip your toes in the Balearic sea at Platja del Cabanyal in Valencia
The Platja del Cabanyal is a great place to relax and enjoy the Balearic Sea. This long stretch of beach is perfect for swimming, sunbathing, and other beach activities.
Have a festive lunch under the sun at Mercabanyal in Valencia
Mercabanyal is a bustling outdoor food court that offers a wide variety of delicious food options for lunch. The market is filled with vendors selling Spanish classics like croquetas and bocadillo but also food from all over the world. The atmosphere is lively and the prices are reasonable. Overall, having lunch at Mercabanyal is a great way to experience the local food culture of Valencia, while soaking up the sun on the patio.
Try artisanal kombucha and specialty coffee at BEAT Brew Bar
Established in El Carmen, a beautiful historic neighborhood in the center of Valencia, BEAT Brew Bar is a project launched in 2018 by two passionates, Virginia and Lucio. At their shop, you’ll find artisanal kombucha, many homemade beverages made with superaliments and also great locally roasted coffee.
Experience the best of Spanish cuisine at Taska la Reina
Taska La Reina in Valencia is a great place to have dinner because it offers a unique dining experience. The restaurant combines traditional Spanish flavours with modern culinary techniques to create delicious and creative dishes. The menu features a wide variety of tapas, as well as larger plates that are perfect for sharing. The atmosphere is lively and welcoming, making it a great spot for a night out with friends or a romantic dinner. Additionally, the staff is friendly and knowledgeable, and can help you navigate the menu and make recommendations. Taska La Reina is a great option for anyone looking for a high-quality dining experience in Valencia.
Explore the Beauty and Diversity of Nature at Jardí Botànic de la Universitat de València
Visiting the Jardí Botànic de la Universitat de València is a great way to spend a peaceful and relaxing day while in Valencia. The botanical garden is home to a wide variety of plants and trees, including many native to the Mediterranean region. The garden is beautifully designed, with winding paths and peaceful ponds, making it a perfect spot for a stroll or a picnic. Additionally, the garden also offers educational activities such as guided tours and workshops, making it a great option for families or groups of friends. The garden is open year-round, and is always a beautiful place to visit, but it’s especially lovely in spring and summer, when the flowers are in full bloom.
Have brunch at FOUR Specialty Coffee & Bistro
FOUR Specialty Coffee & Bistro is a great place to have brunch with friends. On their menu, you’ll find plenty of homemade baked goods along with great brunch options, all made with locally sourced ingredients from small farmers. Also, you’ll be able to have a great cup of coffee because they always feature the best local and national coffee roasters.
Discover local artisan coffee roaster ikore kofi
ikore kofi is a local coffee roaster that focuses its entire production on Arabica coffees from all over the world. If you’re a coffee lover just like me, you’ll be impressed by the quality as well by the large selection of light to medium roast beans. As they’re trading directly with small farms and roasting themselves, they have total control on their coffee from the farm to the cup, resulting in a very high quality beverage.
Indulge in the Authentic Valencian Paella at Yuso in Valencia
Having paella at Yuso in Valencia is a great idea because it offers a authentic and traditional experience of Valencian paella. Yuso is a restaurant that specializes in paella, and is known for its high-quality ingredients and traditional cooking methods. The restaurant uses only the freshest seafood and vegetables, and cooks the paella over an open fire, which gives it a unique and delicious flavour. The paellas are made in big pans which are shared by groups of people and is perfect for a big group of friends or family. The restaurant also has a cozy and rustic atmosphere that creates a great ambiance while you are having your meal.