Valencia, one of the most vibrant short break destinations in Europe, is now more easily accessible to travellers from the West Midlands thanks to new Monarch direct flights from Birmingham Airport, starting on 22 June with departures on Thursdays and Saturdays.
With a privileged location by the Mediterranean sea, Valencia offers a perfect combination of sunshine and beaches, amazing historic sites and architecture, great shopping and a fantastic array of restaurants and bars to enjoy delicious food or dance the night away. Visitors can enjoy exhibitions, concerts and colourful festivals or relax in green areas like the Turia Gardens and the Albufera Natural Park.
Here are some of the top things to see and do on a trip to Valencia:
- On two wheels: Its flat layout and seaside location make cycling in Valencia a delight. There is a wide network of cycle lanes and many streets in the historic city centre have traffic restrictions. The Turia Gardens, which occupy the former Turia riverbed, is also popular with cyclists. Visitors can hire a bike or join different guided bike tours of the city and its surroundings.
- Time travel: A visit to the futuristic City of Arts and Sciences, featured in the new series of Doctor Who, is a must. The complex, design by renowned architect Santiago Calatrava, includes a planetarium, a science museum, a marine park, an opera house and gardens that cover the car park and double up as a lively cocktail bar and terrace in the summer evenings.
- World Heritage Valencia: The beautiful Gothic Silk Exchange building, La Lonja, which can be visited as part of the new Silk Tour around the city, provides an insight into the importance of the city in the silk trade. It has been awarded World Heritage status, as has the ancient Water Court held by the Cathedral every Thursday and, more recently, the Fallas Festival, held in March. A new Fallas Tour is available throughout the year to learn about this famous tradition.
- The home of paella: Spain’s most international dish, paella, is best enjoyed in the place where it originates: Valencia. There are many restaurants specialised in paella and rice dishes along the seafront or by the paddy fields of the Albufera. For a complete gastronomic experience, visitors can learn to make their own at the School of Rice Dishes and Paellas.
- By the seaside: Valencia’s seafront is at its liveliest during the summer months, as locals flock to its golden sand beaches and modern Marina. The area is home to some of the trendiest bars and restaurants, from the modern Marina Beach Club to the Michelin starred La Sucursal, which will reopen in May at the stunning Veles e Vents building. For something more traditional, visitors can enjoy a tour of Cabanyal, the old fishermen’s quarter.
For more information on Valencia go to www.visitvalencia.com or follow us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/visitvalencia, Twitter: https://twitter.com/valenciacity, Instagram: www.instagram.com/visit_valencia, or Google+: https://plus.google.com/+Visitvalencia.