Valencia is a city of contrasts. Modern architecture is intertwined with charming old towns. Valencia is one of Spain’s most welcoming cities to spend a few days. Beyond the cultural effervescence of its cities, a stroll is always a good idea or bathing at its Mediterranean beaches. Of course, you must try the star dish, paella (true authenticity!), and other delicacies such as clams or tiger nut milk. Any time is a good time to visit Valencia, although if there is one day that is even more special than the rest, it’s 19 March, when the city celebrates the famous Fallas by burning gigantic ‘cardboard sculptures’.
POINTS OF INTEREST
THE SILK EXCHANGE
The majority of the “Lonja” (silk exchange) was built between 1482 and 1492, under master mason Pere Compte. The work was completed by a pupil of his after his death, which explains the presence of Renaissance elements. The Silk Exchange is considered one of Europe’s most beautiful examples of Gothic civil architecture. Its similarity with old medieval castles is based on the fierce, fortress-like appearance of its stone walls. It comprises four parts: the Tower, the Sea Consulate Room, the Orange-tree Patio, and the Room of Columns. On Sundays, there is also an exhibition of coins and stamps.
EL MIGUELETE TOWER
This is one of the city’s most distinctive monuments and is located beside the main door of the cathedral. From the top, it offers outstanding views over Valencia and its fertile agricultural area. It was built in 1381 and has an octagonal floor plan and a solid appearance. The top floor has ogive windows and is crowned with a belfry dating from the 18th century.
PALAU DE LA MÚSICA AUDITORIUM
Inaugurated in 1987, the Palau de la Música auditorium is located alongside the Turia Gardens and is one of Valencia’s most recognized buildings. Transparency is one of its main characteristics. A huge glass dome, which was designed by Ricardo Bofill and runs parallel to the Turia River, serves as the main entrance, perfectly integrated into the surrounding gardens. The light and harmony from outside pass through the glass to create a warm atmosphere. Once you have crossed the enormous foyer, you gain access to the different concert halls.