London Stansted to Valencia Manises Airport
Spain’s third largest city is renowned for its collection of art, the friendliness of its inhabitants and the quality of its architecture. Valencia is home to one of Spain’s best fiestas - the feast of St Joseph during the annual Fallas when huge bonfires are made from papier-mâché sculptures. The city is also the birthplace of paella, and there are plenty of excellent restaurants offering seemingly endless variations on this dish.
Flights between London Stansted and Valencia Manises Airport are provided by the two airlines easyJet and Ryanair. The airport is about 8km (5 miles) from the city centre. There is a bus service to Valencia’s central bus station running every 10 minutes between Monday and Friday, every 15 minutes on Saturdays and every 20 minutes on Sundays. A taxi to the airport to the city centre costs around 15 euros.
Places of interest in Valencia include:
- City of Arts and Sciences. This amazing new complex consists of two buildings, the larger of which is the Arts and Science Museum. Set over three floors, this museum contains a gallery of modern art and an interactive science area where you can explore sound, light and electricity. Especially popular is the sports interaction centre where you can find out just how fast and athletic you are! The other building in the complex called L’hemisferic contains a planetarium and IMAX cinema.
- Oceangraphic. Europe’s biggest aquarium is situated a short walk from the City of Arts and Sciences. It features marine life from throughout the world including seals from the Artic and sharks from the Caribbean. Several times a day there is a dolphin show with all the usual leaps and somersaults.
- Bullfighting Museum. Although bullfighting might not be to everyone’s taste, this tiny museum, set over two floors, is well worth a visit. Exhibits include a selection of historic bullfighter’s uniforms, the stuffed heads of some famous bulls and the uniform, including the bloodstained waistcoat, of Manuel Granero who was gored to death in 1922.
- Cathedral. Valencia’s spectacular cathedral, dating back to the 13th century, is largely Gothic in style but has had a number of additions over the years. Its biggest draw is the small annexe known as the ‘Chapel of the Grail’. Within it is the small chalice that is acknowledged by the Catholic Church as being the cup of the sacrament. The cathedral has an unusual octagonal tower called ‘Torre del Miguelete’ that you can climb and from which you can enjoy fantastic views over the old town. It is also worth walking around the outside of the building to admire the many fine entrances, the best of which features a relief of the 12 apostles.
- La Jonja. Considered Valencia’s finest Gothic building, La Jonja, which dates back to the 15th century, became known as the Silk Exchange due to the large quantities of Silk that was traded here. Entrance is to La Jonja is free, don’t miss the spiralled columns in the main hall.