Old Town Valencia
Valencia’s Old Town marks the city’s historic center, with a maze of twisting streets leading to lively public squares. Take your time to stroll around this charming neighborhood to discover emblematic buildings, some of which date back to the Roman era. Explore food markets, visit museums and sit at a café and watch city life pass by.
A good place to start is at Plaza de la Reina where you can visit the Valencia Cathedral, a fusion of Baroque, Gothic and Romanesque architectural styles. Step inside the cathedral to see a chalice that is thought by many to be the Holy Grail. Climb the staircase of the cathedral’s bell tower for panoramic city views.
At nearby Plaza de la Virgen you’ll find more historical buildings. Among these is the Basilica de la Virgen de los Desamparados, which was one of Spain’s first Baroque buildings. Come to this square during the evening to sit at a café and watch street performers. From here, stroll to the El Carmen district to find alleys lined with pubs, restaurants and tapas bars.
When you get hungry, make your way to the Central Market. Here, local traders sell everything from fresh fruit and vegetables to cured meats and seafood. Be sure to try the Valencian paella from one of the food stands outside the market. A short walk from the market is La Lonja, a grand Gothic building that was once the center for Valencia’s silk trade.
Shoppers will enjoy browsing the department stores and independent boutiques located on Colón and Pintor Sorolla streets. History enthusiasts will appreciate the ceramic museum at the Palacio del Marques de Dos Aguas, a palace that dates back to the 15th century. Find contemporary art and photography exhibitions at the Valencia Institute of Modern Art.
When exploring the Old Town, don’t miss the Torres de Serranos and Torres de Quart. These city gates mark the entrances to the neighborhood and formed part of the old medieval city wall.
Getting around the Old Town is easy on foot since the major attractions here are within walking distance of each other.