ONLY BE VALENCIAN

Only-Be Valencian

Battle of the Flowers in Valencia

Summer brings out the best in us. Our skin gets tanned, we wear vibrant colors, we look better and we emanate a different energy too. And it appears to be that the same is true for cities, saving their best festivities and celebrations for this time of the year. There are festivities of all types and for all tastes, but I have fallen for this particularl one: Valencia’s Battle of the Flowers. And the name says it all. There is no justification for war anywhere, but if only all wars were like this one… Imagine red carnations raining throughout the city to the rhythm of majestic carriages, elegant horses and festive music. A spectacle worth beholding, there is no doubt about that. Those who’ve already experienced it will know that it’s best to arm yourselves with tennis racquets or similar, to use them as shields as you watch thousands of flowers fly across the Valencian sky. Those in the carriages, dressed in traditional costume emulating the bourgeoisie of the late 19th century also carry racquets that they decorate for the occasion. It’s worth staying till the very end to see the city fully covered in a multicolored blanket of flowers. The Battle of the Flowers of Paseo de la Alameda began in 1891, and it takes place every last Sunday in July, to mark the end of Valencia’s Feria de Julio, which has been celebrated every single year since 1871. A summer festival full of activities and free events, among which we can highlight impressive firework displays and concerts of well-known artists. And all that with a side serving of...

Shopping in Valencia

Fun, pretty, and affordable. In the center of Valencia, you only need to take a little stroll to discover numerous shops where you can find a variety of clothing and accessories. We begin the tour in Valencia’s Golden Mile, the most luxurious area, and end up in the Barrio del Carmen, one of the most charming neighborhoods of the city.

Take a bath in ‘Tomatina’ juice in 2013

The town of Buñol in the province of Valencia has reinvented itself thanks to the Tomatina. It´s the most popular festival not only on a regional scale but also on a Spanish and worldwide scale, being declared a festival of National Tourist Interest. It¡s a war of tomatoes where there´s also no lack of food nor drink. You will bathe in tomato juice in a battle in which the only weapon is this vegetable. It´s a great plan to blow off some steam and get rid of the stress you accumulate all year long. Photo: flydime The festival takes place on the last Wednesday in August (this year it´s the 28th. Its origins and deeply-rooted tradition means that it´s impossible not to relate the town of Buñol with the smell of tomato. La Tomatina is the most popular festival in this town of 10,000 people that, nearing the date of the festival, triplicates its number of inhabitants. It all began with a parade of giants and big-headed figures during a festival that was a tribute to the town´s patron saint in the summer of 1944. That was when there was an uprising of those who were not allowed to participate and they began to chuck vegetables at the parade. It was a truly spectacular event. The battle was repeated the following year and, after it being banned many times, it was instated as an official festival of Buñol in 1959. It was a public outcry. For it, they need around 100,000 kg of tomatoes, although they are mostly from low-quality crops, since the times aren´t all that in order...

The Barrio del Carmen

Considered in Madrid, Chueca and Triball area, or Barcelona, the El Born district, the Barrio del Carmen is the new hipster and trendy area of Valencia. Shops, bakeries specializing in Valencian products, fashion and design shops, Wood oven bakeries , crafts , a variety of restaurants, neighborhood bars, theaters, nightclubs and much younger and cultural environment in the Old City of Valencia, where you can eat tapas, havea drink, buy art or just stroll through the capital. Photo: GJFamily Located in the historic center, it has has cobbled streets, hidden corners and good decoration, the Muslim wall adorns the Barrio del Carmen. An attractive place with lots of history for an afternoon of the weekend. The trend It has become the most popular tourism area in Valencia, have a web page that tells you about accommodation, restaurants, entertainment, shopping, services offered and neighborhood news. A small map tells you exactly where each store is located, and each section has subsections for example if you want to eat at a  vegetarian or go to a lawyer, they even have a small section of tourism with daily or weekly news from the neighborhood. A calendar reports the activities performed in the Barrio del Carmen, to keep you up to date with everything happening. They also provide a space for businesses to advertise on the website. Two walls encircle the Barrio del Carmen, the eleventh-century Muslim and Christian of the fourteenth century. Since its origins was a neighborhood merchant, divided into two areas, the textile district locksmiths and blacksmiths, and outer district, that of the suburbs, where were orchards, dyers, tanners, cobblers and...

Day trips from Valencia

Valencia has incredible routes to go on a weekend trip, but if you´re on holiday, it can be any day. There are natural areas of huge attractiveness that you can see by hiring guides or venturing to experiment by carrying out special tourism activities.   Do you known what tigernuts are to horchata, that typical Valencian milk-like drink? It´s a natural, healthy and nutritious drink that´s made with a vegetable that´s typical from the north of the city of Valencia. The funny thing is that the tigernut (chufa in Spanish) isn´t produced anywhere else in Europe, and the way in which it´s dried is unique. Hence the development of the Route of the Chufa, so that visitors can get to know the whole process that revolves around the making of this refreshing drink. Tour prices cost 14€ for adults and 6€ for children, and with this ticket you can go on a workshop to learn how to make the drink. If you like wine and you´d like to enjoy a nice Valencian wine tasting in the afternoon, we recommend that you go on the Ruta por la Huerta. The route is carried out in the afternoon and you walk around scented vegetable gardens while the sun hides behind the horizon and the stars begin to shine. All of this with a glass of wine in your hand. The tour takes three hours and costs just 22€, including a picnic meal and the wine tasting. For those who like the contemplative life and pure nature, bird watching from La Marjal del Moro is a good idea. La Marjal del Moro is a wetland that...

Tomas March Valencia

The Tomás March Gallery is one of the most important ones in Valencia, with a strong presence of everything related to contemporary art.