Valencia is the third largest city in Spain. It is famous as the home of paella and the region around it produces rice and oranges.
1. City of Arts and Sciences - This group of modern and white buildings was designed by the architect Santiago Calatrava, a native of the city. It comprises an Imax theater, an aquarium, and the Prince Felipe Science Museum, which houses a very wide range of interesting subjects. There are restaurants in the complex because the visit is a whole day affair.
2. Bellas Artes Museum - The Fine Arts Museum is located in a 17th century Baroque building, but it has a very big and modern annex. This museum is one of the best fine arts museum in Spain and is very well organized, showing the works of the best artists of history of Valencia.
3. The Cathedral - It was built on the site of a Moorish mosque. The first cathedral was early Gothic, but later additions were Romanesque and Baroque. So it is really a mixture of styles. On the sides of the church are beautiful chapels. There are two famous Goya paintings in the church also. The church has a high tower, called “El Miguelete”, named after St. Michael.
4. Basilica of the Virgin of the Abandoned Ones - This church is beside the Cathedral and contains the Gothic statue of the Virgin who protects the less fortunate (Virgen de los Desamparados). She is the patron saint of the city and she is dressed in a beautiful dress and is adorned with many beautiful jewels.
5. La Lonja de la Seda (the Silk Exchange)- This is one of the main tourist attractions of the city. The building was finished in 1498, and the style is Flamboyant Gothic. It has pillars that have are very different because they spiral up. It is the best Gothic civic building in Europe and is a Unesco “Heritage of Humanity” site. Art exhibits are held in this building and the floors are very beautiful. In the past the building was used like a stock exchange, where they traded gold and silk.
6. Fallero Museo - This is a museum that houses the Ninots. These are satirical images of people that are burned during the annual Fallas festival. The images are made of paper mache and wax. The good ones are saved in this little museum. Those images of politicians will not be understood by foreigners, because you have to live in Valencia to understand what they mean.
7. Torres de Quart - The Quart Towers are part of the medieval defensive walls that guarded the city. The walls are now gone, but the towers survive, having been built in the 15th century. These two towers, cylindrical on the outside and flat behind, are a clear example of late Gothic military architecture.
8. Torres de Serrano - This gateway survives the medieval defensive walls and was built in the 14th century. There are two pentagonal structures one each side of the gate.
9. Turia Gardens - The Turia River overflowed its banks in 1957 and work was done to divert the river south of the city. The area left was made into a big park with flowers, ponds, and sports facilities.
10. Palau de La Musica - This is a big concert hall that is considered one of the best in Europe. It has an ernomous glass dome and cascading fountains. It was designed by Santiago Calatrava.
11. Palacio del Marques de Dos Aguas - This beautiful palace is one of the best examples of rococo architecture and it has a Churrigueresque facade that looks like running water. There is a Ceramics Museum inside.
12. University Area -This is the area beside the Turia Gardens and the Palau de La Musica. There are beautiful glass skyscrapers and good restaurants.
13. Teatro Romano de Sagunto - The nearby city of Sagunto has a Roman theater from the first century. There are seats for 8000 spectators and the shape of the theater is semicircular in shape.
14. The Albufera - This is an area outside Valencia that comprises of a natural park that has wetlands, where wild rice grows. It is a favorite place for natives to go and eat paella in the many restaurants in the town.