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Valencia - The City Is Always Fragrant With Lemon And Orange Blossom

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By Author: Mo Othman
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Are you searching for a European city that shines the sun in its sky 300 days a year, and stretches at its golden beaches endless sand, and full of life in it with culture, arts and delicious food, and its buildings combine the masterpieces of Baroque style and modern engineering from the world level ... and do not suffer like many Other stifling crowds of tourists that have become a nightmare for residents and visitors in many European tourist destinations?

If so, then Valencia. Home of the most famous dish in the Spanish cuisine, La Paella, and the other bride of the Mediterranean, who for years competed with Barcelona on the eastern coast of Spain, show every day new charms and shakes off the name of that title that was granted fifty years ago when its citizens declared it the capital of counter-tourism, in which life rotates quietly and without Hustle, close to places and things, her summer cools off the surrounding breezes of Ghouta and wears a warm coat in the winter ...
always fragrant with lemon and orange blossoms.

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Valencia lives its hottest days every year in the middle of March while celebrating Father's Day in one of the most popular festivals in Spain and Europe, Las Fallas. The festival ends with the burning of dozens of cartoon statues that symbolise events or prominent personalities during the past year, which come out of the professional women of the great artists and craftsmen who spend a whole year preparing them before they are swallowed up by the tongues of fire in moments.

With the beginning of the nineties of the last century, Valencia witnessed a series of pioneering engineering and construction projects that changed the face of the city and gave it international fame, as it opened its doors to tourism on its projects to become one of the main destinations in Spain, whose number of visitors has more than twice the number of people.

The first of these projects was to divert the course of the “Turia” river that crosses the city for a distance of ten kilometers, and convert the old course into a popular park that begins with a garden for plants and animals, and ends at the “City of Arts and Sciences” designed by the famous engineer Santiago Calatrava. It is considered by its pioneering modern design as one of the modern international engineering masterpieces. In 2007, when Valencia hosted the famous American Cup sailing competition, its beautiful sportive port turned into the new hub for recreational life in the city around the "sails and winds" building. He also became an international engineering landmark, knowing that in 2022 he would host the main activities to celebrate the proclamation of Valencia as the world capital of design. It is expected that the city will receive during these celebrations tens of thousands of designers, engineers and artists from all over the world.

The other pole for recreational and cultural activities in the city is the huge building that was previously a "snow factory" at the doors of the old harbor, and today it is a cultural and artistic center full of life and music that pushes many to buy and restore the old houses surrounding it.

The historic center is one of the richest centers of Baroque architecture in Spain, studded by some Gothic buildings. Among them is the Silk Market Building, which was placed by UNESCO on the World Heritage List, and its construction dates back to the late fifteenth century when Valencia was at the height of its prosperity and a global center for the silk trade, and the ancient monastery, which today turned into a center of contemporary culture that includes the Institute of Modern Arts, which started from it in the years The last one of the most important artistic movements in Spain.

But the active artistic and cultural life in Valencia is not limited to new or upscale neighborhoods, but is also common in popular neighborhoods that extend up to the famous Saler Beach, which is overlooked by the famous rice fields and orchards bearing the city's name.

One of the beautiful stations that should be stopped during the visit to this city is the "Central Market", one of the classic buildings in Valencia, which is considered one of the best old markets in the world in terms of engineering and huge construction that illuminates natural light throughout the day. Known for its massive metal structure and high domes, this building was last restored in 2016 by Italian artist Gian Luigi Culaluci, who oversaw the restoration of the roof of the Vatican Cathedral. Then there is the “Carmen Monastery,” which was built in the beginning of the seventeenth century, and since 2017 it houses a special cultural center and a famous Japanese restaurant that is used by tourists, including the Japanese.

The cultural life and the artistic activities that Valencia abounds in are also enhanced by the attractiveness of its distinctive local cuisine, especially for everything related to rice dishes, fish and sea fruits ... and the international dish, the famous "paia", which it is desirable for the Arab tourist to refrain from pride in front of the people of the city that this dish is Arabic The origin is like its name, which is derived from the phrase "remains", as the Arab notables in the city were throwing food waste to the public that was used to prepare the paia. The reason for this is that this information is not correct because the dish dates back to the beginning of the eighteenth century, and because in such a claim what may hurt the feelings of the people of the city who are proud of their Andalusian heritage and hundreds of phrases that entered from the language of the antagonist to their terms in the fields of agriculture and irrigation. And for those wishing to master the preparation of this dish, which the people of the country and visitors flock to, there are lessons dedicated to this in several places in the city.

And for those who are expanding their time, a visit to the La Albufera Nature Reserve "Al-Buhaira", which is five minutes away from the city, has evidence of the advanced irrigation systems established by the Arabs, such as fountains, canals and inventory tanks, and the "water court" building that was established in the Andalusian era and is still to Today the only administrative and legal reference for the distribution of irrigation water to the farms of Ghouta Valencia, and opens its Spanish monarchy every year.

Another suggestion for those who have had the opportunity, is a trip aboard an ancient sailboat with its captain, sailors and chefs, on a tour of the beautiful coastal countries surrounding the city, and stop and visit some of them.

It is not better or more beautiful than the conclusion of the visit, rather than sitting in one of the cafes surrounding the fascinating field of the fountain in the historical center of the city, where you can see the peaceful life path in the Virgin Square, which is based on the ruins of a Roman Forum fraught with the building of the regional government "generals" from the seventeenth century , And the Cathedral of Our Lady of Mary, considered a masterpiece of Spanish Gothic art.

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