Valencia: Last stop, for now…
As I told you, it all started in Málaga, but after many stops here I am, I’m currently living with my beautiful family in Valencia, an amazing city located in the east of Spain; city of contrasts, so many different styles, from the classic and ancient to the modern, with a little wink to a futurist architecture.
With lots of monuments that you can find all over the city, Valencia is well known for its open spaces, huge avenues with majestic buildings crossing the city centre, giving you the opportunity to visit many of them walking around.
One of the most important samples of the Valencian architecture is the The City of Arts and Sciences, a fascinating architectural ensemble located at the end of the previous riverbed of the river Turia.
The futurist complex designed by Santiago Calatrava is one of the largest scientific and cultural complexes in Europe, a place to spend hours and hours discovering every corner and enjoying the huge variety of colors that you can see when the sun reflects in the artificial lakes all around the complex.
But you can’t speak about Valencia without showing the cultural part, without speaking of one of the most famous traditions and festivals all over the world: ‘Las Fallas‘.
A festival in which huge statues (ninots) made of papier-mache are created during a year and destroyed in minutes, consumed by the flames. Difficult to understand when you read or listen someone talking about it, but simple to get when you live the great week of Valencia from the inside. All accompanied with the crazy bang of the ‘Mascletàs’, several minutes of indescribable noise, with hundreds of kilograms of gunpowder burnt everyday. Ephemeral art that must me seen and listened, at least, once in a lifetime.
Not only monuments and festivals, if we say Valencia, we must talk about beaches and palm trees. The warm weather and the coast make of this Mediterranean city a perfect settlement for thousands of tourists from all over the world every year.
And, of course, what can we say about Valencian gastronomy? Have you ever heard something about… PAELLA? Probably the most famous dish fo the Spanish cuisine all around the world.
Although the image that everyone has in mind when they think about paella is yellow rice with peppers, meat and seafood; for the Valencian people the authentic paella has only these ingredients: chicken, rabbit, red pepper, green beans, ripe tomato, garrofón, saffron, salt, olive oil and, of course, bomba rice.
Valencia, known as ‘The city of light, flowers and Fallas‘, a charming city full of amazing landscapes, a splendid place to enjoy the Spanish culture from many different perspectives. A trip you’ll always remember, a city you’ll never forget.
(All the pictures taken by Jose L. Mateos)