We love Valencia

Following major flooding in the historic centre of Valencia, the Rio Turia was diverted, the former riverbed now a beautiful park with cycle (skate) ways, playground, exercise equipment, ponds, fountains, and skate park.

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Also great for skating was the area surrounding la Ciudad de las Artes y Ciencias, a series of buildings, most designed by Santiago Calatrava.

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Much of the buildings and landscaping is white mosaic tiling, with flashes of vibrant blue.

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The huge pool surrounding the Hemispheric was full of transparent kayaks, and waterballs designed by NASA to assist in preparing astronauts for zero gravity.

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The city’s historic centre was vibrant, with a huge covered market that we visited daily for breakfast, and for buying fruit and supplies.

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Everywhere the food was fabulous.

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We visited the towers at the two remaining sections of the fortress protecting the old town, with stunning views over the city,

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and had a tense moment when Otis leaned back and his sunglasses slipped off his head and headed for the narrow arrow-shooting slit, but fortunately he grabbed them in time,

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visited two contemporary art galleries, one a stylish modern building, the other in a converted medieval monastery,

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enjoyed Monuments and Braille maps around the city,

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and swam at the local beach, where Baxter had a new experience – being stung by a spider fish! Fortunately, the local Cruz Roja (Red Cross) paramedic treated it with ammonia, and prescribed walking on hot sand, which was easy, as it was boiling!

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Shopping opportunities included a new Kangol hat (Daniel),

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clothes from skate shops (Baxter and Otis),

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and a polka dot phone cover (Gini).

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Our lovely apartment was in the Barrier Carmen

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overlooking a four way intersection of narrow roads, with four pedestrian crossings, and excellent opportunities for people watching, including Daniel arriving home with our clean laundry!

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Amazingly, with four pedestrian crossings, some people still walked across the middle of the street.

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