Ok, Valencia. I will not forget you.
When I decided to come to AIP Language Institute to take a Spanish course in Valencia. I knew I was going to have a different and fun summer. And so it was. What I did not know is that I was going to discover a city, Valencia, brimming with energy that captivated me from the day one.
If someone asked me to summarize some of Valencia’s key points, I have no doubt in the making of this list:
1. Food. Valencia has a real culture for food. Tapas and beer are key for a night with friends, a way of eating that involves sharing tastes and opinions of the day that’s over. From 8 pm, the streets are full of people looking for a terrace where to tapear.
2. Street art. During the summer, the center of Valencia is flooded with tourists of all ages and from all parts of the world. Word of advice: try to take a walk through the old town on Sunday morning before 12 am. You will find a city without people and Valencia will offer you a special show of street art. Don’t look then, for now, at monuments or churches, just walk aimlessly looking at the walls and old buildings. You’ll be surprised to discover a different kind of art.
3. Benimaclet. Benimaclet is a neighborhood in which you never get bored. It’s ideal place to live as a student, too perfect to enjoy an interesting and varied program of multicultural activities. A neighborhood moving, constantly young, definitely a city within a city.
4. Turia gardens. Valencia is a city full of green spaces. The Turia gardens cross the city and are a nice place to spend some free time walking or biking, or just relaxing on the lawn. Devote a whole afternoon to enjoy the Turia gardens and the green heart of Valencia.
5. City of Arts and Sciences. It is a true example of architectural genius, where art and nature come together in a show of clear colors that leaves visitors in awe; and wanting to take the perfect picture that will surprise all their friends on Facebook.
6. Albufera lake. It’s a natural park 10 km from Valencia, ideal to enjoy the silence of nature during a typical sunset; rice fields extending along the road that reassure you that you are in the right place to eat paella.
7. Religious festivals. If you are in Valencia during the summer, you can’t miss one of the religious festivals of the surrounding towns. Any of them is good, since all are a blend of the same local mix of tradition, fuss, noise and music. Religiousness is the background of the event, but the life of the party is to enjoy the street (often crossed by the bulls, beware!) eating, dancing and drinking.
Valencia is not just these seven points, obviously. It is a multiethnic city with many aspects to know. It won’t cease to surprise you. Promised!
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