Explore Valencia with Expedia’s Travel Guides to find the best hotels, flights, holiday packages and more!
Spain’s two largest cities, Barcelona and Madrid, might draw the crowds, but those in the know rightly consider Valencia to be the best of the lot. It’s a thrillingly modern place, exemplified in the sci-fi buildings of futurist architect and local boy, Santiago Calatrava. Although the city is defiantly forward-looking, it pays homage to its history with a selection of museums and a well-preserved Old quarter, as well as plenty of restaurants serving the traditional Valencian dish, paella, night after night.
Book a hire car in Valencia and you’ll be free to explore this cultured city at the pace it deserves. Plus, with the whole of Spain’s gorgeous south coast within reach, including cities like Malaga, Murcia and Barcelona, a rental car will prove invaluable.
When you visit Valencia, you’ll most likely fly into Valencia Airport, about 15 minutes from the city centre. From there it’s easy to get to many of Spain’s other cities including Murcia (two and half hours away), Barcelona (about three hours away) and Madrd (four hours away).
Book a hire car in Valencia and you’ll have your choice of a wide range of trusted and reliable providers. Pick from brands including Enterprise, Hertz and Firefly, or a local provider like Sol Mar.
It’d be easy to write pages about Valencia’s modern architectural wonders, but there’s plenty of history here too. The city’s iconic cathedral dates from 1238 and has survived war, invasion and revolution. It’s a beautiful place, inside and out, and well worth a visit – interestingly, Europe’s oldest legal institution, the thousand-year old Tribunal de Las Aguas, still meets outside the cathedral every Thursday to settle disputes over irrigation between local farmers.
For a glimpse of Valencia’s more modern side, head to Ciudad de las Artes y Las Ciencias, in the city’s south, not far from the calm blues of the Mediterranean sea. The buildings are breathtaking, particularly the iconic glass and steel half-shell that houses a huge 3D cinema. The miniature city also holds Europe’s biggest aquarium, as well museums dedicated to music, arts and science. You may need to buy tickets to specific events in advance, so check online before you visit.
No trip to Spain is complete without a trip to the beach, and the area around Valencia doesn’t disappoint. El Saler, about 20 minutes south of the city, on CV-500 is among the best, a beautiful four-mile stretch of golden sands, calm waters and sand dunes. There’s even a golf course, the Capo de Gold El Saler.
Like the rest of mainland Europe, the Spanish drive on the right. Speed limits in towns are generally around 50 kilometres per hour (30mph), open roads about 90 kilometres per hour (55mph) and motorways around 120 kilometres per hour, (75mph) though pay attention to roadside signs.
Ready to get started on your own trip to Valencia and Spain? Start with this Valencia city guide, and use the Expedia search tool to track down the best deals on flights and hotels, and to research popular attractions and activities.
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