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Valencia?

Holiday Ideas & Foreign Travel
malkymoo
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Valencia?

#95295

Postby malkymoo » November 13th, 2017, 11:42 am

I have booked flights for a week in Valencia, for the first week in December. This was prompted by Mrs malkymoo's desire for a bit of warmth before Christmas. Currently about 20C there, so it should certainly be a bit warmer than the UK. It is somewhere I have never been, and the flights were very cheap, £33 return.

Anybody got any tips or recommendations, unmissable sights etc?

FredBloggs
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Re: Valencia?

#95296

Postby FredBloggs » November 13th, 2017, 11:44 am

I visited Valencia for a day a couple of years ago whilst staying elsewhere fairly close by. I cant really recall any particularly "must do" things in the city, but it was a very nice place indeed to sit at a cafe and watch the world go by. And for me, sometimes, that's just fine.

UncleIan
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Re: Valencia?

#95299

Postby UncleIan » November 13th, 2017, 11:49 am

malkymoo wrote:I have booked flights for a week in Valencia, for the first week in December. This was prompted by Mrs malkymoo's desire for a bit of warmth before Christmas. Currently about 20C there, so it should certainly be a bit warmer than the UK. It is somewhere I have never been, and the flights were very cheap, £33 return.

Anybody got any tips or recommendations, unmissable sights etc?


In the current series of "The Travel Man" on Channel 4 they went to Valencia in one episode. Should be on All4 catchup. The main presenter and the format may be an acquired taste, but Valencia looked pretty good to me, can't remember any specifics though, unhelpfully.

paullidd
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Re: Valencia?

#95302

Postby paullidd » November 13th, 2017, 11:53 am

They have a really stunning aquarium, science museum and if I recall correctly natural history museum all in the same area. I thought I could have a look at all three in one day, however I spent the whole day at the aquariium and never made it to the others. The beach was good too.

Paul

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Re: Valencia?

#95309

Postby Snorvey » November 13th, 2017, 12:06 pm

A friend of mine lives near Valencia and I recall hime saying that, although winter daytime temperatures are pleasant enough, it can be pretty cold / 'Baltic' at night (and very, very wet from time to time)

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Re: Valencia?

#95355

Postby Sobraon » November 13th, 2017, 3:00 pm

Spent a day in Valencia with family in July - mostly at the Oceanografic Valencia. Very much like a European Seaworld (Orlando) and I think on balance it is probably better than Seaworld. From there it is a 10 minutes walk to the IMAX at L'Hemisferic to cool down. Family members then wanted shopping and so strolled to the Nuevo Centro where I was dropped off in Taco Bell which weirdly was selling their normal fast food fare with very cheap, very cold beer ( very welcome in July).
Last edited by Sobraon on November 13th, 2017, 3:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.

forrado
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Re: Valencia?

#95715

Postby forrado » November 14th, 2017, 7:04 pm

No longer a wage slave for quite a number of years now, for the past 7 years I’ve been in the habit each year of renting an apartment for a month-to-six weeks during March-April and again during October-November in Alicante. Indeed, I’m just back in the UK having spent all of October in El Campello, a 20-minute bus ride outside of central Alicante.

From the 15 to 19 March each year in the not too far away city of Valencia they hold a week-long fiesta called ‘Las Fallas’ when on the night of 19 March ‘Nit de Foc’ everything goes up in flames …
https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=valencia+fallas&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwiP_dbtt77XAhVJIcAKHfXoAl8QiR4IxAE&biw=1280&bih=633

Now, from Alicante it’s a two-hour train journey to Valencia’s elegant ‘Estacio del Nord’ …
https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=valencia+estacio+del+nord&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwizs-q6ub7XAhXiKcAKHUR7A-wQ_AUIDCgD&biw=1280&bih=633

And, throughout the 4 days of the fiesta the trains and buses between Alicante and Valencia are more or less running round the clock. While I don’t do it every year, I have been to ‘Las Fallas’ on a number of occasions so I’m quite familiar with the centre of Valencia.

First thing to get sorted is the public transit system …
https://www.valence-espagne.org/english/information/public-transport-in-valencia.htm

(Click on the map image in the top left-hand corner of the page to enlarge and print off if needed)

Don’t bother with the buses stick with the underground metro network. Buy a bono ticket of 10 rides at any of the automated dispensing machines one sees located in the bigger stations.

Then for an overwhelming assault on one’s sight and smells head for the ‘Mercado Central’ …
https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=valencia+central+market&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwj-08XcwL7XAhWKKMAKHagWD3kQ_AUICygC&biw=1280&bih=633

In my time I’ve seen a few fresh produce markets on my travels round Spain but Valencia’s Mercado Central is the daddy of 'em all.

Valencia is also the birth place of paella, indeed they have their very own signature dish ‘paella valenciana’ made with rabbit, chicken and snails – but, not seafood. The addition of seafood being a feature of ‘paella andaluz’. In Valencia city centre ‘paella valenciana’ is something of a fast food. There are takeaway shops that make it up large batches daily to dole out in tin foil containers (complete with plastic fork) to passing trade.

As for drink, try ‘Horchata de Chufa’. If you don’t know what it is see …
https://www.livinglanguage.com/blog/2012/07/27/spains-healthy-alternative-to-ice-cream-la-horchata-de-chufa/

Mentioned in the article is an establishment by the name of “Horchateria de Santa Catalina”. The place is a mecca for the lovers of the refreshing brew being located on the ‘Placa de Santa Caterina” between the “Placa de la Reina” and the “Placa Redona” see …
http://www.horchateriasantacatalina.com/

But be warned; it’s not cheap so don’t go mad.

While you are in the neighbourhood take look round the “Placa Redona” see …
https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=placa+redona+valencia&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjkgurMz77XAhVbGsAKHUZKC9AQ_AUICygC&biw=1280&bih=633

In recent years there’s been a lot of money and effort spent remodelling this centuries old round square.

Re: The City of Arts and Sciences Park

Website at … http://www.cac.es/en/home.html

If you must go for a look around then the futuristic complex is located at the end of the Turia Gardens. However, since opening in 2000 the rising cost of maintaining and operating the buildings has become a bone of contention with Valencians. Proving to be something of white elephant and a drain of the city’s coffers. While heavily promoted to visitors, locals tend to steer clear of the place unless something special is going on.

malkymoo
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Re: Valencia?

#95896

Postby malkymoo » November 15th, 2017, 12:08 pm

Thank you for all the replies, and especially to forrado for his most informative posting.

I did watch the Channel 4 programme, interesting, if a bit too much of an emphasis on eating and drinking!

I will try to remember to report back here on my return.

malkymoo
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Re: Valencia?

#104186

Postby malkymoo » December 14th, 2017, 4:31 pm

Well, I'm back from my week in Valencia, had a very nice time, would recommend it for a winter break.

Flew out from Luton at 7.30 am on a quarter-full Easyjet flight and was in the centre of the city by 12 local time. Weather was sunny but felt cold in the strong wind when we arrived. Next day the wind had gone but it was still sunny, and this continued for the rest of the week, bit of cloud on a couple of days. It felt cool at night and in the mornings (but hardly "Baltic") but the afternoons were very pleasant, forecast said 15C but it felt a lot warmer, Mrs Malkymoo was down to her underwear on the beach.

I found it a very pleasant city, very relaxed, none of the frenetic hustle of Barcelona. Excellent public transport, cycle friendly, easy to hire bikes. I would echo everything ferrado said about the central market, amazing place.

We walked down to the City of Arts and Sciences, but did not go in anywhere. Very impressive architecture, you can see where all the money went. At the opposite end of the Turia Park (9 kilometres, formerly the course of the river) is a zoo worth visiting. I'm not normally a great fan of zoos, but this one is limited to African animals, a limited number of species in family groups (for example 8 gorillas) in large enclosures. The animals all seemed happy, the layout gives the impression that it is the people who are enclosed.

Plenty of other attractions, museums, churches, beach, I hope to visit again sometime.

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Re: Valencia?

#104188

Postby Snorvey » December 14th, 2017, 4:41 pm

It felt cool at night and in the mornings (but hardly "Baltic")

Depends on what you're used to I guess.

England is boiling hot to me.

forrado
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Re: Valencia?

#104429

Postby forrado » December 15th, 2017, 5:46 pm

Thanks for the feedback.
malkymoo wrote:I found it a very pleasant city, very relaxed, none of the frenetic hustle of Barcelona.

That’s a quite perceptive observation because Valencians consider themselves more Iberian than their earnest and industrious next door neighbours in Catalonia. It all goes back to the days when there was a Kingdom of Valencia long before there ever was a country called Spain. While always in the political shadow of the two competing power centres of Madrid and Barcelona, Valencians tend not to have too high opinion of what their two bigger rival cities are up to.

malkymoo wrote:Weather was sunny but felt cold in the strong wind when we arrived. Next day the wind had gone but it was still sunny, and this continued for the rest of the week, bit of cloud on a couple of days.

Bouts of strong winds are a feature of Valencia’s climate during November-December and again come March-April. It’s all down to ‘Sirocco’ effect of winds originating in the Sahara and Arabian desserts being pulled across the Mediterranean by low pressure weather fronts and meeting the cooler, wetter air over the Pyrenees mountain range. And, not to be outdone, Valencians being Valencians even have a festival of the winds (fiesta del viento) when kite flyers from all of Europe compete …
http://www.festivaldelviento.org/Inicio.html

malkymoo wrote:Plenty of other attractions, museums, churches, beach, I hope to visit again sometime.

If you do decide to go to Valencia again, go during ‘fallas’ time – always the four days leading up to 19th March each year …
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qb7g-eqeDLg

You will experience a completely different Valencia. I recommend that every visitor to Spain should do the ‘fallas’ once – because once is enough, you’ll never want to do it again.

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Re: Valencia?

#104526

Postby BrummieDave » December 16th, 2017, 1:43 pm

I wasn't going to add to this thread as I don't know Valencia at all. I tried to go there last year but the flights just didn't fall conveniently for me.

But my son is in Alicante and I just looked at the weather forecast and saw how much sunshine he'll be experiencing over the next few days, and how little I will, and it reminded me just how good Spain can be for visits during different times of year.

In November I was in Grazalema for a week (not far from the more well known Ronda), followed by a few days in Seville. I didn't see a cloud throughout the nine days. It was a real boost to see the sun and feel warm, although you do notice the cold on your return!


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