Feb 22 Valenci-JA!
At the risk of making this a somewhat redundant post, we still want to draw attention to the city of Valencia, less than an hour from Gandía Beach. Superfluous, because yes, when you are at Sunsation Beach you really have everything your heart desires. Most of them can't be turned away from the beach. Anyway, the situation is that there is a wonderful city to be found just around the corner.
So very possibly it is still an idea to consider including a day in Valencia in your schedule. It is a big city, an open city, a green city, and city with a heart, with history and a city with taste. What makes Valencia Valenci-JA! We list a few reasons for you!
Running right through Valencia for thousands of years has been the Túria River. Oh no, wait. After a devastating flood in 1957, the river was drained and diverted. A nine-kilometer stretch of reclaimed land winding through the city fell free, and it has been put to very good use by turning it into a large park, a green vein for fresh air, good exercise and contemplation.
Santiago Calatrava, a true child of Valencia, was given as an architect a piece of land near the sea and more or less a free hand to do with it what he wanted. So that became the Ciudad de las Artes y Ciencias, a futuristic spectacle of light, the color white, water and natural forms.
You can see pictures of it, but to really take it in, you have to be in the middle of it!
The city in
Valencia combines the green of the Jardi del Túria and the white of Calatrava's buildings with a beautiful spacious city center with stately buildings, quaint stores and something that I don't know how to describe, but which I can say immediately makes you realize you are in a Spanish city. There is a lot to see, but we wouldn't be Barefoot if we didn't also pay attention to food and drink, so below are three more Valencian specialties!
Of course, you can get paella anywhere in Spain. But, to give credit where credit is due, it originally comes from Valencia, so for the real traditional paella valenciana you have to come here and have a look. The most notorious can be found at Casa Carmela on the beach at Playa de la Malvarrosa.
Ground almonds, water and sugar, that's what makes horchata, another culinary find of Valencia. A wonderfully refreshing drink for a hot day. And in a real old-fashioned horchateria with mosaics on the wall.
Agua de Valencia
Cava, zumo de naranja (that means orange juice), sugar, vodka and gin. Together, that makes Agua de Valencia, which, again, is something that helps perfectly to seek that typical vacation feeling.