Jul 23, 2019 @

plaza ayutamento valencia fountain

I have been dying to show you a glimpse of Valencia, Spain for a couple of weeks. From the previous post, you know we had been considering making Cullera, a suburb of Valencia our next home because of its lovely beaches. Upon visiting, we decided against it. Valencia, the city itself is now in the running as our next home. I’m sure there are a lot more reasons to move there, but because we have only spent a total of 6 days there now (we just got back from another visit late last night), I am only going to list 4 of the reasons why Valencia makes us very happy so far.

4 reasons why Valencia Spain makes us happy:


neptune statue fountain Valencia

One of the many little plazas in Valencia..so much to discover.

plaza in Valencia Spain

Outside the Valencia Cathedral with the model. The tablet is still in Arabic.

I can not underestimate the beauty of Valencia and the role it plays in my happiness. As you know, I love Seville and have been happy here for the two years. Our decision to move is more of a desire to experience even more beauty which l have found in abundance in Valencia. If someone were to tell you that you were in the 2nd Arrondissement of Paris for instance in some places, such as the first image, you would totally believe it. It is old and new at the same time if that makes any sense :-).

Sevilla is old and historical and reflects it with the colors of the buildings. Valencia on the other hand, has more muted colors giving it a newness that really intrigues me. It blends so nicely that you forget there is an amazing history behind it too. They didn’t look “Old”.

iglesia de st joan valencia nextbiteoflife

One of the many churches we ran into. Iglesia de St. Joan


old run down bld in valencia

There are still parts of the city that looks old and we love that too. There is a lot of remodeling going on everywhere which is cool.

gritty building in valencia

Gritty graffiti coexisting with the newer parts.


Food in Valencia:

4 reasons why valencia makes us happy ham

With over 1000 stalls in the market, you can find fresh food tout suite!

el mercat valencia entrance

The entrance of the mercado central.

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I actually asked a friend if it was crazy to want to move somewhere because of food :-) . While there are traditional tapas like we have in Seville, there seems to be a daring spin on their tapas and it delights my pallet to put it mildly. I am so curious to try more of the food. Valencia is the home of the paella, that savory dish with rice and seafood. The traditional paella Valenciana is made with duck and chicken, but they also have the ones with seafood. There is also quite the variety of International cuisine to be experienced. We had great Chinese, Japanese and Indian food.

The central market is absolutely humongous and sells everything type of meat and seafood imaginable. We had a great time just walking around and feasting our eyes. Sevilla has one too, but this just has more of everything, especially giant lobsters and crab legs. Valencia is also world famous for its oranges and nothing beats a fresh squeezed glass of the good stuff. The region produces great wine too and are reasonably priced, even in the restaurants we paid no more than $2 a glass.

el mercat valencia exterior merchant

I want to learn how to make authentic paella.. the pans weren’t too high priced either.


plate of pasta in valencia spain

We found the most amazing authentic Italian food at “Osteria” cucina in the Ruzafa neighborhood run by a Sicilian family. Molto bene! and that’s saying a lot coming from Federico.


paccheri pasta with lamb ragu in valencia spain

Paccheri pasta with white lamb ragu. Fantastic!

Green and wide open spaces :

me in front of city of arts and sciences valencia

How cool is the City of Arts and Sciences? I want to discover more. That is the Hemispheric to the left, a Laserium among other things.


turia park valencia

This is the Turia park. Trails go on for over 9 km winding through the city below street level.

Valencia is a green city. It has numerous parks, including the Turia Gardens, an absolutely spectacular setting with playgrounds, mazes and the sunken and totally gorgeous City of Arts and Sciences and the Palau de la Musica which is affiliated with the Berkeley School of Music in Boston. We visited the city and it was so cool seeing everyone enjoying the grounds, people walking their dogs, picnicking even with the cold (crazy!) and biking along the trails. With over 120 km of cycle paths, we won’t get bored easily and it is a compact city really.

palau de la musica valencia spain

This is the Palau de la Musica. How futuristic is this? Beam me up Scotty! :-)


metro line valencia spain nextbiteoflife

Love using the metro again!

Sometimes l forget how wonderful it is to just pop underground and not worry about driving. I am the worst backseat driver ever. Ever! I have turned into my mother, and Federico hates it. It is stressful for both of us. It was so great to just walk to the nearest metro stop. With  6 metro lines running through the city and suburbs, it’s a breeze to get around. Seville has only one (the city ran out of money before completing the others) which makes things a bit difficult. Cabs were also surprisingly cheap. We were checking out apartments for rent and took cabs a lot. Just once was the fare $7 (rush hour). Most of the time it was $4.10 (rounded up as that was the minimum fare :-) ), sometimes $5. The only time Federico hasn’t complained about the “river of money” spent on cabs.

You might like: 17 reasons to skip Valencia!

bridge at city of arts and sciences valencia spain

I want to live in one of those flats with this awesome view of the park and City of Arts and Sciences so much :-).

What is this all leading up to you ask? My mind is all but made up that Valencia will be our next home. We unfortunately did not find a place we liked and so no rental contract came back with us, I will keep searching online. It’s much better now because l have narrowed down the areas l would like to be to 3 and if it comes down to it, we might rent through AirBnB for a month and search with boots on the ground. Federico is 98% there. He absolutely loves the place but just wonders if we can make it happen without stress. I have to keep reminding him that l made U.S to Malta happen solely through the computer. This is a walk in the park compared to that, especially with the dogs! :-).

I’m not ready to leave Spain yet. While there are obvious similarities to Seville, I am very intrigued by life in the city now for a bit. One other bit that l liked about Valencia was that l saw more people of colour, not just immigrants selling goods. While l am used to being in the minority here, it was a welcome sight for me to see black people going about their business. If you’re looking to book a trip to Valencia or anywhere else, please consider using our affiliate link here to search for flights and hotels. As an alternative you can use our Hotelscombined link which will search all other sites so you can compare.

Update 2019:

You may or may not know that we ended up falling in love with Valencia. So much so, that we decided on purchasing an apartment of our very own in the city. We have been here now two years and love it more each day. You can find the house buying post links below.

Buying a flat in Valencia

Remodeling our Valencia flat

Our finished flat in Valencia

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4 reasons why valencia spain makes us happy #valencia #spain #expatlife

Have you visited Valencia before? If yes, how did you like it? If not, does it look good to you? Have you ever moved for the love of food?