Are you ready to start planning your Valencia itinerary and have a spectacular time in Spain?
When travelling to Valencia, many people may be unsure of what to do and how many days they should spend in the city.
Founded in 138 BC, this beautiful town has an interesting history, incredible architecture, with ancient buildings contrasting with ultra-modern ones, nice beaches, unique festivals, exquisite cuisine and to top it all, it is easy to get around and the prices are very reasonable.
I have been to Valencia several times and really think it’s one of the best places to visit in Spain. Therefore I have put together itineraries for 1, 2 and 3 days in Valencia to help you plan your trip.
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Helpful Tips For Planning a Valencia Itinerary
Valencia, the capital of the autonomous community of Valencia and the third-largest city in Spain after Madrid and Barcelona, is located on the east coast of Spain, around 300 Km (186 mi) from Madrid, Spain’s capital (check the map here).
How to get there?
There is an international airport in Valencia, and some of the airlines operating flights to Valencia are British Airways, Easyjet, Vueling, Iberia, Air Europa and Ryanair.
You can book your flights with Skyscanner, which is the website that I use and trust.
Best time to visit Valencia
Valencia has a Mediterranean climate with consistently pleasant weather. Average high temps range from 15C (59 F) in the wintertime to 30C (85F) in the height of summer.
You can visit Valencia all year round and I would say that the best time is between May and September.
However, if you want to see the Fallas Festival you must go between the 15th and 19th of March.
How many days to spend in Valencia?
Three full days. For me, the perfect Valencia itinerary is 3 days. With it, you can see several points of interest and historical sites without rushing and if you visit the city from the end of May to September you can also enjoy its best beaches.
Where to stay in Valencia?
I stayed at Twenty Granada and if you’re looking for hotels in Valencia, I also recommend:
How to get around?
Valencia is a very walkable city with a good public transport system and you don’t need a car.
If you want to save some money during your stay, buy the Valencia Tourist Card. With this card, you travel for free on buses, metros and trams and get free entry to municipal museums and monuments.
The cheapest card, the 24h one, costs €15. Just the metro from the airport to the city centre costs € 6.70.
Here are some of the tours that I recommend.
Itineraries for 1, 2 and 3 Days in Valencia
- Visit the City of Arts and Sciences
- Strolling around Jardin del Turia
- See the old city gate
- Wander around the Old Town and Carmen district.
If you are going to spend only one day in Valencia, I’d suggest you start your day by visiting the City of Arts and Science, an architectural complex made up of six-ultra modern buildings and a white cable-stayed bridge.
You should get there around 9:00 – 9:30 AM in the morning to take some pictures then start your visit.
There is a lot to see and do in the City of Arts and Science but if you have limited time, I recommend taking a 1 ½ hour guided tour of the Opera House or visiting L’Oceanogràfic, the largest oceanographic aquarium in Europe.
If you’re travelling with kids, the Museu de les Ciències Princípe Felipe and L’Hemisfèric (an IMAX/3D cinema and planetarium) are also good options.
Get your ticket to visit L’Oceanogràfic in advance here.
After visiting the City of Arts and Science, you could follow the old Turia Riverbed to Torres de Serrano by bus, metro or cab, but for me, walking is a better option.
I love strolling around Jardin del Turia as it’s one of the best things to do in Valencia.
After around a 40min walk, you will reach Pont dels Serrans Bridge with the imposing tower in front of it, and you can enter the Old Town through one of the city gates towers remaining from the walled city.
There are many things to do and see in Valencia’s Old Town but if you have limited time, I recommend visiting Plaza de la Virgen (one of the oldest squares in Valencia), Valencia Cathedral (where you can find the holy chalice used by Jesus during the Last Supper) and Plaza de la Reyna.
Then wander around the streets of Carmen district until you reach Iglesia de San Nicolás (Valencia’s Sistine Chapel), and finish at Plaza del Ayuntamiento (one of the most beautiful squares in Valencia).
At night you can have dinner in the Carmen neighbourhood where there are a few trendy and very nice restaurants serving delicious Spanish tapas. Some of the restaurants that I recommend are: Colmado de la Lola, Delicat and Celler del Tossal.
What to do in Valencia in 2 Days – Itinerary Overview
- Visit the City of Arts and Sciences,
- Strolling around Jardin del Turia
- See the old city gate and wander around the Old Town.
- Dine in the El Carmen district.
- Start at Bioparc Valencia
- Visit Mercado Central, Església de Sant Joan del Mercat, La Lonja de la Seda, and Museo de Bellas Artes.
- Dine in the Ruzzafa neighbourhood.
If you’re wondering what to do in Valencia in 2 days, follow my 1-day itinerary for your first day.
On the second day, you should start by visiting the Bioparc Valencia, a 10-hectare (25 acres) animal park that recreates African ecosystems, such as the Savannah, Madagascar and an Equatorial Forest.
A visit to Bioparc is one of the best things to do in Valencia because you can get very close to wild animals in this park and there aren’t the traditional railings and cages common to many zoos. Instead, they use natural barriers to separate visitors from the animals, such as rivers, ponds, streams and rocks.
Quick Tip: Get there early in the morning and don’t miss the Birds and Mammals Exhibition held daily at the amphitheatre, an open-air arena surrounded by acacia and baobab trees.
After your visit, you can head to the nearby restaurant El Racó de la Paella which serves one of the best paellas in Valencia.
In the afternoon, you should visit Mercado Central (a modernist-style building and one of the oldest markets still in use in Europe), the nearby Església de Sant Joan del Mercat (a beautiful Catholic church) and La Lonja de la Seda (a UNESCO heritage site and one of the city’s architectural treasures).
If you still have time, you can finish at one of the best museums in the city, Museo de Bellas Artes, which has a stunning collection of Valencian Gothic paintings.
Quick Tip: You can buy some souvenirs in the market, including Spanish sausages and jamón. But be aware that the market closes at 3:00 PM.
To finish your Valencia 2-day itinerary, I recommend having dinner in the Ruzafa neighbourhood with some really good bars and restaurants, such as: Rodamon, Almaden and Dos Estaciones.
3 Days in Valencia – Itinerary Overview
- Start at the City of Arts and Science, including the Opera House and L’Oceanogràfic
- Visit the Fine Arts Museum
- Dine in the El Carmen district.
- Wander around Valencia Old Town and visit some of its best attractions
- Dinner in Ruzafa district.
- Start at Bioparc Valencia
- Relax on Playa de la Malvarrosa (spring & summer) or visit the Valencia Institute of Modern Art and the Silk Museum (fall & winter).
On my Valencia 3-day itinerary, you will not only see more attractions, but you will also be able to do it more leisurely as you will have more time. Therefore, the first and second days will be different from the two previous itineraries.
3 days in Valencia is the best option, in my opinion, especially if you’re visiting the city during the summer.
In the morning, visit the City of Arts and Science. As you have more time you should take a 1 ½ hour guided tour of the Opera House and visit L’Oceanogràfic after that.
Quick Tip: Don’t miss the dolphin show in the largest Dolphinarium in Europe.
After visiting the City of Arts and Science, you can go for a walk in the old Turia Riverbed to the Fine Arts Museum to see the impressive Valencian Gothic paintings. Those are two of my favourite things to do in Valencia.
If you don’t want to walk, because it’s a 40min-walk, you can always take a bus, the metro, an Uber or buy the Hop-on-hop-off bus ticket.
In the evening head to the El Carmen district to have dinner there.
The second day is going to be dedicated to exploring Valencia’s Old Town.
In the morning start at Plaza del Ayuntamiento, one of the most beautiful squares in Valencia, then go to Mercado Central, the nearby Església de Sant Joan del Mercat, La Lonja de la Seda and, if you have time, also the Ceramic Museum.
Quick Tip: The Ceramic Museum is just a 5min walk from La Lonja de la Seda. If you don’t want to visit it, at least give a glance at its magnificent façade.
In the afternoon, start at Plaza de la Reyna, Valencia Cathedral, Plaza de la Virgen and its Basilica Almoina Museum (to learn about the origins of the city) and wander around the streets of Carmen district until you reach Iglesia de San Nicolás (Valencia’s Sistine Chapel).
Quick Tip: There is a very famous and traditional place in Valencia for churros, fartons, chocolate and buñuelos called Horchatería Santa Catalina. When you’re in this area, it’s worth checking it out for a coffee break. The decoration with traditional tiles is very cute.
End your day by having dinner in the Ruzafa district.
Finish your 3 days in Valencia with a visit to the Bioparc in the morning and after that head to Playa de la Malvarrosa, one of the urban beaches in Valencia.
If the weather isn’t good enough for a beach, you can visit the Valencia Institute of Modern Art (IVAM), one of the leading institutions of modern and contemporary art in Spain and the Silk Museum (the best place to discover Valencia’s rich silk tradition).
Finish your day by having dinner in one of the beachfront restaurants. I recommend: Bodega Anyora, Casa Montaña, Bodega Aldeana and La Peseta. Another option is Bar Ricardo in La Petxina which serves one of the best patatas bravas in Valencia.
But if you prefer, you can have dinner at a Flamenco show. Just make sure to buy your ticket in advance.
Quick Tip: If you’re looking for things to do in Valencia at night, during the summer months La Marina de Valencia becomes one of the hottest spots in the city offering music, sports, culture, nightlife and gastronomy. And L’Umbracle, at the City of Arts and Science, is transformed into one of the most impressive and elegant summer terrace clubs in Valencia.
Of course, these are just suggested Valencia itineraries for 1, 2 and 3 days and you can change them according to your interests, budget and time.
I believe that following those directions will make your trip to Valencia much easier to plan and more enjoyable.
After spending 3 days in Valencia, you will understand why this is one of my favourite Spanish cities.
If you travel down to Alicante, a great destination on the Costa Blanca, here’s an Alicante travel guide to help you plan your visit.
Safe travels and have fun in Spain.
More posts about Valencia that might interest you:
- Fallas Valencia: A Uniquely Spectacular Festival
- If the bulls aren’t injured is it acceptable to watch a bullfight?
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- Book Your Flight Find deals on airlines on my favorite search engine: Skyscanner. Be sure to read my How to find cheap flights article.
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