My name is Maria Moreno, I’ve lived in London for 4 years and I work as Events Account Manager. I am originally from Valencia, known as the city of flowers and light. Valencia is the third largest city in Spain, located by the Mediterranean coast and it’s sunny 80% of the time. It’s the best place to go if you’re looking for a city break with the option of a relaxing afternoon at the beach.
What is a typical breakfast and where would you go?
Federal Café is my favourite place to go. I always order fresh orange juice, green tea and a jam or tomato toast. If I’m especially hungry though, I’ll go for an Eggs Benedict.
After breakfast, I highly recommend visiting the historic centre and all the Art Noveau buildings, such as Mercado Central, where you can find out a bit more about the Mediterranean gastronomy; as soon as you step in you will find different types of fresh fruit and veggies (Valencian tomatoes are super tasty), fish, meat, spices and wines.
Favourite place to grab lunch?
What is the ideal afternoon activity in a city like Valencia?
You can go for a nice walk or bike ride down the dry river side towards the Ciudad de les Arts y les Ciencies buildings, an open natural space with modern architecture, designed by Santiago Calatrava, sourounded by beautiful gardens and water. Visit the three buildings – the Science Museum, the Hemispheric Cinema and the Oceanographic Park – you can buy combined tickets to access all three.
Another option is to visit Joaquin Sorolla’s art exhibition at Bancaja Cultural Centre. He is a well-known Valencian impressionist painter.
Where are the best places for dinner?
My favourite places are:
Kamon – an amazing sushi with Mediterranean flavours
Voltereta Bali – Where there is great Mediterranean food in a unique space with a great interior and different environments. Also, there is really good music and you can stay for drinks after dinner.
San Tommaso – The best Italian food in the city. A lovely, romantic restaurant.
Canalla Bistro by Ricard Camarena – Outstanding fusion tapas and tasting menus
La Majada Quesos – This is a cheese place where you can have some cheese tapas with nice wines, you can also buy from a wide selection of cheeses to take home.
In the evening, what is the city like and where do you find yourself?
I love going to Mercado de Colon, which is one the most emblematic buildings in the heart of Valencia (Art Nouveau). It’s an open space with different coffee places and restaurants where you can have a glass of wine or a Valencian horchata (tigernut drink). Pair those with some fartons, a typical spongy sweet to be dipped in horchata. You can also have dinner on any of the restaurants on the lower ground.
In a busy city like Valencia, is there anywhere to chill?
You can also enjoy the beach views, sip a fresh smoothie, and indulge in some cake at La Mas Bonita Cafe. All the cakes are great, but I highly recommend the Nutella Cheesecake.
Where is the best area to stay/sleep for young travellers?
There are hotels in every neighbourhood, but I highly recommend Hotel Mediterráneo Valencia which is in a really good walking distance to all the main attractions.
Also, Host & Home is right in the heart of the city.
What season would you recommend visiting?
April or May when the warmest months start and it is not too hot, however by midday temperatures can reach 26 degrees.
March as well, when one of the most traditional celebrations takes place in Valencia from 15th-19th March, the whole city is a display of colourful streets with monuments and lights, fireworks, music and flowers.
Is Valencia best for a family holiday/friends holiday or a couples holiday?
I would say it is good for both as there are many different ways to enjoy it with either family or friends.
There are many attractions that families with kids can enjoy too such as Gulliver Park, where children can climb, Viveros Park, a nature garden and Biopark, a beautiful zoo with many different animals to go and see. Also, there are many playground areas for kids by Patacona Beach.