Beyond Calatrava: how to visit Valencia if you like architecture
If you are passionate about architecture and want to know all the secrets of Valencia, we have a plan for you!
Do you want to discover Valencia from the eyes of an architect? Then let’s start! One of the must-sees is the historical centre of Valencia where we dive into the heart of the city. What can you see? Well, roughly speaking, the ideal route would pass through the Torres de Serranos, Plaza de la Virgen, Plaza de la Reina, Plaza Redonda and the Town Hall. You should also stop at the Lonja de la Seda (declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1996), the Central Market and the Estación del Norte, jewels of Valencian modernism, or the MUVIM (València Institute of Modern Art) and its garden, designed by the architect Guillermo Vázquez Consuegra.
Without a doubt the city’s greatest architectural attraction is the work of Valencian architect Santiago Calatrava. A large part of his work is housed in the River Túria, and walking through it to discover it will offer you pleasant surprises. By the way, did you know that the old riverbed is one of the longest urban parks in Europe? It is incredible the possibilities of leisure and sport activities that it allows, besides being the green lung of Valencia. The perfect itinerary runs along the river, the Cabecera Park, the 9 d’Octubre Bridge, the Puente de la Exposición, follows the hilarious Gulliver Park and ends with the architect’s masterpiece: The City of Arts and Sciences of Valencia. Purely avant-garde.
But there’s more! Valencia has other areas that are of great interest to lovers of urban planning and architecture. Some of them are the picturesque Cabanyal in Poblats Marítims and the modern Port of Valencia, a clear example of the urban reconversion of an industrial space. And of course, La Marina de València, a beautiful seafront with a varied gastronomic and leisure offer. The most emblematic building is the Veles e Vents, designed by the well-known architects David Chipperfield and Fermín Vázquez.
Other examples of great architectural interest are the Conference Centre, the work of the British Architect Sir Norman Foster, Espai Verd, one of the most unique buildings in our country, which was a pioneer in technology, sustainability and ecology. Mercado de Colón, a beautiful example of modernist architecture in the Eixample and a city meeting point, or in the bohemian Barrio del Carmen, the home studio of the architect Ramón Esteve.
If you want to know the historical, urbanistic and socio-cultural processes of this vibrant city, what better way to do so than in the company of an architect? Guiding Architects Valencia has experienced local guides who will give you first-hand and well-documented information. However you are, there is a tour designed for you: at your own pace. They offer personalized tours in which you will experience the history of this city between the contemporary and the traditional. Conversations about unique buildings and urban plots await you, whether you ride your bike, walk or take a boat.
Architecture, modernity, history, creativity, gastronomy, sea, sun and life: we are waiting for you in Valencia!