A Long Weekend in Valencia, Spain

The more I travel in Spain, the more I adore it. The people are so welcoming; there is such a variety of fresh food, great restaurants, stunning landscape and architecture. Valencia did not disappoint in any of these things.

After looking at the hotels on offer, it was fairly clear we were going to have the usual struggle of trying to find a stunning small hotel with a room or suite suitable for a family of 4, so we decided to go ahead and pop our airbnb cherry. (If I was travelling on my own or as a couple, I definitely would have looked at either the Hotel Hospes Palau de la Mar or the Caro Hotel. (If anyone has been to either of these boutique hotels I’d love to know.)

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The airbnb was a fantastic find. It was newly refurbished, in a fabulous location overlooking the market in the old part of the city and had 2 bedrooms, one bathroom, a beautifully light living room/kitchen and 4 balconies. The only minor thing that might be difficult for some, is that it is at the top of the building with no lift (good for working off all the tapas!).

The pic of the market below, was taken from our apartment living room and I have to say this is one of the most amazing food markets I’ve ever been too (tap on the images for further info & double tap to enlarge).

It was such a buzz to go there first thing in the morning. Whilst we strolled away from the market we were totally taken aback by the stunning architecture in the old town – there are so many beautiful streets and hidden squares to discover.

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Side of the Cathedral.

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The front elevation of the Cathedral.

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Detail of the entrance to the Cathedral.

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Further detail of the Cathedral.

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Beautiful blend of old and new architecture.

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Plaza de la Virgen.

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Dream house.

We then travelled to the South-East of the city to see the City of Arts and Sciences, where you feel like you’ve been catapaulted into the future. Here you can find the Science Museum, Aquarium, Opera House, events space, IMAX cinema and Planetarium. Even if you’re not interested in the museums, it is definitely worth a visit for it’s otherworldliness.

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The food throughout our stay was delicious – loads of fresh seafood and mouthwatering tapas. The only meal that I found difficult gluten-free wise, was breakfast. However, being in such close proximity to the market meant fabulous fresh fruit every morning, so it wasn’t that much of a hardship.

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Tapas in the sun.

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Traditional (& the best I’ve ever tasted) chicken and rabbit paella.

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A not very Spanish but very delicious aubergine parmigiana (the only time I struggled to find something gluten-free on the menu.

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Octopus.

Another favourite find was the Mercado Colon with it’s many chic cafes and (yet again) incredible architecture.

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It really was an amazing weekend and Valencia really surpassed my expectations. If you’ve been – I would love to know what you thought and if you have any visitor’s tips regarding this beautiful city?

 

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