Valencia is stunning. We parked at the southern end of the old river bed park as we had decided to walk most of the length of the park to the historical centre to visit the largest covered market in Europe and visit the various sights in the old quarter. The decision was perfect as the new architecture of the city of arts and science including an imax cinema, planetarium, concert hall, conference and exhibition centre is truly stunning. The blue of the water created an azure blue shimmer on the white of the rendered concrete. The glass expance and futureistic shapes left you with a feeling of a surreal experience of being in another time and on another planet, albeit it is supposed to represent the blinking of an eye ( I think it does when it is opened in hot weather).
We walked the 3 miles through the landscaped park passing water features, unusual trees, and a huge model of the giant Gulliver pegged down so that hoards of children can play on him.
The old old quarter was lovely with stunning buildings, large squares, narrow streets,bars,restaurants and history galore.
We then headed into the historic indoor market for a real taste of Spanish. It felt as though it had remained unchanged for years.
It was a long day with an eight mile round walk with the walk back exhausting, however the park seemed to connect the old and the new and provides a gorgeous haven in a stunning city where people jogged, cycled, danced did their exercises and just enjoyed being outside. There is a really relaxed yet vibrant buzz about the place, we had barely scratched the surface but we loved it. Our friends stayed a month and we can understand why. It truly IS a city of contrasts and only 25 min drive from our Aire. Our Aires & Stop Overs