Spain’s 3rd largest city of Valencia combines coastal and city centre appeal to cater for a wide range of tastes. It’s a city whereby they make the most of what nature provided. The 9 kilometre long Turia Park cuts through the city offering pedestrian, scooter and bicycle navigation throughout the city. It used to be a Turia riverbed. In 1986 this became inaugurated as a park and is a popular recreation centre. Valencians and those in the vicinity enjoy partaking in a range of sports from baseball through to rugby and lots in-between. Sea dwellers flock to the vast sands of the Malvarrosa Beach or the disabled accessible city beach of El Cabanyal.

Historic features dotted around

The impressively preserved late 14th century, Pere Balaguer designed Torres de Serranos, is one of twelve gates that lined the medieval wall in Valencia. The architecturally eclectic Valencia Cathedral also adds to the historic and structural appeal to Spain’s 3rd largest city. At just €7 admission(inclusive of an audio guide) the Cathedral is a must-see. Valencia does not overcharge visitors to experience its heritage. Any historian, amateur or otherwise, could not possibly visit Valencia without taking in the Gothic silk exchange: La Lonja de la Seda. Its erection pivoted the 15th & 16 century and is located just across the way from the Mercado Central. It is well worth a visit for the stunning ceiling alone.

Market and a Mall caters for shopping needs of all

One of the centrepieces of this friendly city is the Mercado Central: 700+ stalls of consumer variety spread over 8,000 m2 makes it a big draw to locals and visitors alike. A wide range of consumer needs is catered for. Particularly in the food the stalls from fresh staples inclusive of alluring fruit through to the more adventurous pallet of snails.

The latter is a specialty of the Los Caracoles Peribáñez stall; it’s worth at least a look. The ornate and charming market hall building is an eye-catching piece of architecture that will captivate you before you get distracted by the stalls within it.

Whilst the Mercado Central offers a taste of local culture in many different ways, those wanting chain store and brand shops are not neglected either.

The Nuevo Central situated right next to the Turia Metro station opened in 1982 and was the first mall of the city. It provides mainstream shoppers with favourite outlets such as Mango, Zara and Pull & Bear.

L’Oceanografic provides a captivating glimpse of life under the sea

Accessible off-road for non-motorists the L’Oceangrafic Valencia is Europe’s largest aquarium. Unfortunately, a fire on the 9/7/19 meant disruption and chaos is the reason it was most recently in the news. However, the incident was under control within 20 minutes, no animals or humans suffered injury. Things were back to normal the next day, according to the attraction’s Twitter feed. Unlike some of its competitors, this aquarium is expansive and does not have you feeling trapped in.

The exhibits range from the captivatingly white, Beluga whales to Slender-snouted crocodiles and Aldabra giant tortoises are just a few highlights from the circa 45,000 specimens on display.

At €30.70 for adults and €22.90 concessions for admission, you do not feel ripped off. This is especially the case given the vastness of the attraction and the evident commitment to conversation.

Cuisine to satisfy everyone

Whether it’s savoring the lovingly prepared blend of traditional Valencian paella or pleasantly surprising yourself with a plate of Huevos rotos con patatas y jamón (Spain’s version of ham egg and potatoes), the fayre in Valencia is a tourist attraction in its own right. Naturally, like in most parts of Spain, visitors to Valencia may need to add a few hours on to their normal evening dining time, to fit in with the custom.

That said, it is worth it, as no matter where you eat in the city there is normally a friendly, buzzing atmosphere not far away.

From the cozy traditional, but International friendly al fresco vibe of the Restaurante San Miguel and quintessential Spanish tapas inclusive Restaurante Barballi, to the highly regarded Italian chain La Tagliatella: Valencia offers dining variety. The eateries in this fair city feature prices to suit a range of budgets.

Valencia has something for everyone

With budget airlines serving Valencia from a range of locations, budget travellers can get a decent deal. The general vibe of the city is a laid-back and friendly one. It is worth a visit for those who want a range of things from their trips.