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General information

Climate

playaestrellaValencia has one of the mildest climates in Europe. It is characterised by a typically temperate Mediterranean climate with an average annual temperature of more than 17ºC. The summers are hot and the winters are very mild.

During the winter months, the temperature rarely drops below 10ºC. Rainfall is infrequent and extremely low in summer months with precipitation at its highest at two points during the year, one in Autumn and the other at the end of Winter/start of Spring.

Humidity is around 70%.

 


 

Languages

Two official languages exist in Valencia: Valencian, the local language for the Valencian Community, and Castilian, the official language of the country. The Constitution (1978) and the State Autonomy of the Valencian Community are the two legal texts that recognise Valencian and Castilian as the co-official languages for the region.

The coexistence of both languages demonstrates a city that is devoted to respect and protection of different linguistic features; a cultural Heritage for all citizens.

 


 

Electricity

The standard electricity current is 220-240 V AC, 50 Hz. Plugs have two round pins. Modern apparatus such as mobile telephones and digital camera chargers can be plugged in directly using an adaptor without a current transformer.

 


 

Postal Service

The central office for Post and Telegraphs, located in Plaza del Ayuntamiento, number 24, is open from 8:30am to 20:30 Monday to Friday. It is open on Saturdays from 9:30am to 14:00. Telephone enquiries can be made to (0034) 963 102730. Stamps are available to buy in all newsagents throughout the city.

 


 

Monetary System

Since 1st January 1999, the Euro has been the new currency for all participating states in the Economic and Monetary Union (EMU). Since Spain's incorporation into the Economic and Monetary Union on 1st January 2002, it has been the official currency used in Spain and any countries belonging to the EMU

On 31st December 2001, the free use of the Peseta ended and a process of substituting Euros for Pesetas began. For two months the two currencies coexisted. On 28th February, the dual circulation of the two currencies ceased. Since 30th June 2002, exchanging Pesetas for Euros for free can only be done in Banco de España branches.

 


 

Timetables

 

Shops

Normal shop opening hours are from 10:00 to 13:30 and from 17:00 to 20:30, Monday to Saturday, however, there are exceptions and the big department stores are open to the public continuously from 10:00 until 22:00. On Sundays, except for special dates or occasions, shops are closed.

Restaurants

In Valencia, as with the rest of the country, food is normally eaten a little later than the rest of Europe. Breakfast, the first meal of the day is taken between 7:30 and 10:00am and, although it appears the same as a continental breakfast, it is often a lot lighter. Lunch, or brunch, is served between 14:00 and 15:30. Dinner takes place between 21:00 and 22:30pm, again later than the rest of the continent. Nevertheless, the majority of establishments vary their timetables according to the working day.

Shows

Valencia provides its visitors with a broad range of culture to be explored. The majority of cinemas have three or four showings per day between 16:00 and 23:00. There are daily theatre performances which usually take place between 21:00 and 22:30 on weekdays and between 18:00 and 19:30 on Sundays. Some theatres offer two shows a day, the first at around 18:00 and the second at 22:00.

A good climate and the friendly and open nature of Valencia ensure a lively nightlife. Open-air concerts, recitals, music venues and numerous street parties and celebrations are in abundance. Visitors to our city will find an array of options to soak up the environment, even on weekdays. Pubs, bars and music venues normally open in the evening from 19:00 to 03:00 in the morning and nightclubs stay open until 5am.

The EMT nighttime bus service is available all year round from 22:00 until 03:00 in the morning as standard and 03:00 in the morning on Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Bank Holidays.


Festivals

fallasA fervent lover of mass celebrations and parties, Valencia also preserves its own traditions, customs and millennial parties, which are perfectly integrated into the present day. This major city has been famous, ever since the 15th and 16th Century, for its diverse and popular festive events that take place throughout the year.The happy, extrovert and noisy nature of Valencians is demonstrated by its religious and secular celebrations which take place in the streets and combine ceremonies, ingenuity, fireworks, music and flames. The events that stand out the most in the extensive festive calendar are the ‘Cabalgata de los Reyes Magos (the Three Kings Parade) on 5th January, San Vicente Mártir on 22nd January, the popular and traditional Fallas festival between 15th and 19th March, Semana Santa (Holy Week) between March and April, depending on the region, San Vicente Ferrer which takes place the following Monday and lasts until Easter Monday, Our Lady of the Forsaken on the second Sunday in May, Corpus Christi on the Sunday after Holy Thursday, San Juan on 23rd June, the July festival and Valencian Community day on 9th October.Hot temperatures, a rich gastronomy and spectacular celebrations means that the citizen or the visitor experiences the full social eruption produced in every one of the festivities taking place in Valencia.


Gastronomy

allipebreThe rich variety in Valencian gastronomy is a reflection of the diverse products available and one of the welcome surprises for visitors. The Valencian kitchen is fed by its fertile land, one of the most important in the country, and by the fresh fish and seafood from the Mediterranean. In addition, fruit and vegetables are excellent all year round. The Valencian diet is simple, traditional and natural.The outstanding culinary dish by far is the Valencian Paella, although rice is omnipresent in Valencian cooking and is cooked in many different ways. It is worth highlighting the other popular dishes such as ‘arròs a banda'/'arroz a banda' (rice and fish), 'arròs negre'/'arroz negro' (rice in squid ink), ‘el arròs al forn'/'arroz al horno' (rice with black pudding, sausage, chickpeas and tomato), ‘arròs amb bledes' (rice with seaweed) and ‘arròs amb fesols i naps' (rice with pork and beans).

paellaBesides these dishes, seafood and fish also predominantly feature in Valencian cuisine and are combined with garden vegetables to create unique meals. It is worth giving a special mention also to a typical dish from Albufera: all i pebre (eels with garlic and paprika).All of these intricate dishes are often served with excellent wine: White wines from the Alto Turia and the Serranía, as well as reds from Requena, Utiel and Campo de Lliria. The Valencian region has more than seventy-five thousand hectares of vineyards, boasting an excellent level of production and quality.The Orange is the indisputable leader when it comes to Valencian desserts. Extensive baking (including ‘roseton', ‘arrop i tallaetes' o ‘arnadí') is often accompanied by mistela or moscatel sweet wines.If you pay a visit to Valencia in Winter-time, it is vital that you savour the 'buñuelos de calabaza' (pumpkin-based doughnut-style delicacy) with dipping chocolate. In Summer you can not leave without sampling the ‘horchata' (drink made from pine nuts) which comes from Alboraya and is eaten with ‘fartons'. If it is an alcoholic beverage you wish to try, the local agua de Valencia (cava or champagne and orange juice mixed with gin and vodka or Cointreau) is a must.


Crafts

ceramicaValencia has kept alive its rich tradition of making crafts. The prolific handiwork of the Valencians, produced with great artistic, imaginative and skillful prowess, will surprise visitors. If it's a high-quality souvenir of Valencia you're looking for, you'll have no problem in doing so. Each part of the city offers a wide range of shopping opportunities, from the numerous modern, internationally recognized shops to the small traditional shops which have produced skillful handcrafts for many decades, or perhaps the small markets and flea markets which continue to contribute a particular enchantment to the recreational act of shopping.Craftwork lovers will enjoy the multitude of products that the city has to offer in this area. The famous Valencian ceramics, hand-painted fans and silk embroidery make up the main branches of artisan activity here. Wicker and glass products, along with furniture-making are some of the other specialist skills that occupy thousands of craftsmen and craftswomen in Valencia.Ceramics are particularly important and this great tradition can be seen throughout the whole region. Especially noteworthy are the ceramics that are produced in areas such as Manises and Paterna. The town of Paterna is famous for its ‘socarrats' (burnt ceramics) and for its green and purple ornaments. The urban enclave of Manises has become a great ceramic Marketplace, specialising in plates and utensils which feature a contrast of blue on white, along with modern colourful varieties and healthy amount of golden mirrors.The application of refined skills in creating porcelain statues and decorative objects has brought the name of Valencia into the souvenir shops of the whole world. We must not forget the role that has been played in this field of expertise by the company Lladró, which has spread the name of our city internationally.