Experience the Community of Valencia's famous festivals
By Amy Adejokun
The Community of Valencia is relatively unknown to tourists, and unless you've visited at least once before, there's far more to this place than 'Fallas' and 'Tomatinas' (traditional regional celebrations).
Despite the continuing appeal of the Fallas de Valencia and the Tomatina de Buñol, this is one region with far more to offer besides; from landscapes to culture, this part of Spain boasts a plethora of aromas, colours, flavours and sensations to seduce even the most demanding of visitors.
Our Editorial team's advice
Famous for its lively nightlife and busy cultural programme, the city of Valencia alone is worth the trip. If that's not really what you're looking for, though, you might prefer to visit to the monumental Gandia, take a stroll among the paddy fields and orange groves or head to the beach to round off your day.
The Community of Valencia is home to two linguistic communities, namely Castilian and Valencian. The origins of the Valencian language stem back to Catalan, but do be careful not to confuse this with the language spoken in Barcelona. The Catalan spoken in Alicante is referred to as Western Catalan.
+The city's cultural and historical wealth
+The nearby beaches
+The City of Arts and Sciences
+The Paseo de la Alameda
-The views of the industrial port from the beach
-The lack of architectural harmony in certain parts
The main ingredient used in traditional Valencian cuisine is rice. Having been introduced to the peninsula during the period of Arab domination, it is best-known in its paella form, which is renowned throughout the world. The exact origins of this popular dish are unknown, but one theory states that 'paella' is a Valencian word meaning 'frying pan', also stemming from the Latin 'patella'. There are many different types of paella; traditional Valencian paella generally consists of yellow rice, chicken, green beans, butter beans, 'habichuelas' (another type of green bean), escargots, tomatoes, saffron, ground red pepper and olive oil. It is cooked on a low heat in a paella pan. There are also many different types of rice, which you'll find served with seafood, mixed, in a pan, cooked in a casserole pot, etc. This region even has its own particular variant, known as 'fideua' (a typical Spanish dish consisting of vermicelli and seafood), most likely invented by a chef on a boat, who had a particularly good assortment of fish but no rice! Of course, we strongly recommend that you try this.
Ideal Weather Search
Find weekly weather forecasts for Community of Valencia . Different criteria make it possible to predict with precision the best time of year to go to Community of Valencia . A comprehensive weather score, made up of temperature indicators, bad weather predictions, sunshine levels and wind speeds, will allow you to choose the activities best suited to the weather conditions and therefore make the most of your holiday in Community of Valencia .
See the different areas
Valencia boasts a very rich artisanal heritage. In the village of Paterna, for example, you'll find 'socarrat' wall decorations, ceramics and green and mauve decorative pieces. The artisanal traditions of the 'Fallas', meanwhile, include handmade fans, with ivory and exotic wood mounts, and silk art.
If you're looking to pick up a few souvenirs, some rather unusual items or pieces of clothing, take a stroll through the alleyways until you come across the open-air markets, which are only open in the morning.
With regards to foodstuffs, you'll find the central market, the busiest and most traditional in the city, just next to the Lonja de la Seda (Silk Exchange). This part of the city provides an enchanting setting in which to shop and also the opportunity to familiarise yourself with the Catalan specialties and the ingredients of an authentic Valencian paella. Despite the fact that it is very popular with tourists, the locals also come here regularly, the combination of the two making for a very cheerful atmosphere.