As you may know, I spent a few days in Spain recently with AC Hotels and wanted to share that with you today. While we had a few lovely days in Madrid (you can read my little mini travel guide here!), our time in Valencia was just that bit shorter! We essentially had an afternoon in the oldest part of the city and then that evening, had a boat trip and dinner in Albufera and the following day visited L’Oceanogràfic. The stay was amazing and the city was utterly gorgeous and I am desperate to return and spend more time there!
However, I had so many beautiful pictures and while I would struggle to provide a more thorough travel guide for you, I did want to share a few highlights of my time there and perhaps if you are planning a trip to Valencia (and really, you must!), you’ll see a few things you might want to add to your own itinerary.
AC Hotels in Valencia
Before we get to that, however, I did want to give a shout out to the gorgeous AC Hotel in Valencia where we stayed.
The contemporary rooms are simply furnished but well-equipped for everything you might need for your stay.
The bathrooms are covered in deep green marble and a glass sink which was a nice surprise – very luxe!
But it’s outside on their beautiful terrace that was my favourite. Comfortable sofas and seating areas under the cover of huge pergolas invite you to sit with a cocktail to escape the heat of the sun. We enjoyed a lovely tapas lunch here where the food was divine – beautifully presented and very tasty alfresco dining at its best.
Valencia’s Historic Centre
With temperatures somewhere around 35 degrees when we arrived into the old town, I was grateful there were so many shady spots whilst we explored! Historic buildings are at every corner and tree-lined streets are dotted around, tourists and locals escaping the heat under umbrellas and enjoying cocktails in the summer sun.
There are ornate churches seemingly everywhere. Above is Santos Juanes, one of many Roman Catholic churches dotted around the city. The Baroque details are extraordinary.
And of course, a visit to Valencia would not be complete without having a look around Valencia Cathedral, where construction started in the 13th century and went on for another 2 centuries after that. This created an interesting mix of styles – from Gothic to Renaissance, Baroque to Neo-classical.
Of course, not every historic building has a religious significance.
We visited Llotja de la Seda which is comprised of a few different function rooms but the main hall, Sala de Contratacion (The Contract Hall) created a collective ‘wow’ – it’s a large lavishly decorated space supported by gorgeous twisted columns. This was, in fact, the financial centre of La Lonja, where the merchants would work out contracts and when translated means ‘The Silk Exchange’, dating back to when agricultural items and textiles were bartered.
Outside, there is an orange garden, a beautiful green courtyard surrounded by high walls which I found rather magical.
Just outside the cathedral and surrounded by historical landmarks is Plaza de la Virgen, where a fountain with a statue of Neptune takes centre stage. It’s a lovely square, dating back to Roman Times and is a great spot for enjoying the many cafes and outdoor terraces in the vicinity.
As I said, it was a very short visit but it’s a place where I feel like I only merely scratched the surface – I’d love to visit it’s beaches as well. I hope you enjoyed a few of the highlights that I enjoyed and I’d love to know if you’ve ever been to Valencia or if Valencia is a place on your must-visit list?
Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post and my trip was paid for by AC Hotels. Of course, as always, all words, opinions and images are my own and I only work with brands I really love. Thanks for supporting the brands that support Swoon Worthy.