Exploring Valencia with kids: Travel tips for families.

My family and I love Valencia, Spain’s third largest city situated between Alicante in the south and Barcelona in the north. Since our friends Michi and Alejandro emigrated to Valencia around one and a half years ago, we have already been there twice – and now feel a bit at home ourselves in the Spanish “home of paella“!

I can especially recommend Valencia as a destination for families. We got to know the city both times from the perspective of travelling with our baby and toddler sons, and can assure you: Valencia is simply made for a trip with little ones at hand!

Unterwegs in Valencia: Selbst im November sind wir hier noch recht luftig unterwegs, ein schönes Reiseziel um den Sommer bzw. den Herbst zu verlängern.

Checking out Valencia with kids: It’s an ideal city destination to prolong the summertime, from our perspective of living in Vienna at least.

 

Direct flights to Valencia, and moving around the city with ease.

The practical thing about Valencia, at least to us, is the direct flight connection from Vienna. The journey takes two and a half hours – and offers our boys plenty of entertainment. From the airport in Valencia itself, it’s easy to get into the city by metro. In general, public transport in Valencia is totally easy to navigate, also with our little globetrotters.

Vielen Dank, liebes Team der AUA, für das freundliche On-Board-Entertainment!

Thank you so much, dear team at Austrian Airlines, for ensuring “on-board entertainment” in the form of various games and toys.

 

So ein Flug kann ganz schön müde machen! Wie praktisch, dass eine ganze Sitzreihe für unseren Jüngsten frei blieb ...

It’s nap time for our youngest, and we were lucky to be able to spread out over some free seats on the plane …

 

Our favourite tram in Valencia is number 4, and it goes all the way to the sea! And offers plenty of space in this compartment.

Our favourite tram in Valencia is number 4. It goes all the way to the sea, and offers plenty of space in this compartment.

 

Arriving at our AirBnB flat: Family-friendly accommodation at Platja Malvarossa beach.

As last year, we made sure not to book just any hotel for the duration of our stay (we were there for six days at a time), opting instead for a cosy flat near the city beach in Valencia. With our young children, it’s just easier to be able to quickly prepare a meal, spread out their toys and set up a “home away from home” – only with sand between your toes!

From the flat, it’s just one minute to tram 4 towards the city and another three to the “biggest sandpit of all”: the beautiful, long sandy beach of Valencia!

Dieser Strand ... OH BOY!

This beach … OH BOY!

 

Die Kinder lieben es hier. Und Ihr wisst schon: Sind sie zufrieden, sind wir es als Eltern auch.

The kids love it here. And if they’re happy, so are we.

 

Blick in unsere Wohnung: Im November lockt die kräftige Sonne Spaniens auch hier noch auf die Terrasse.

A view of the terrace at our AirBnB flat. The strong sun draws us out even in November.

 

Exploring Valencia with toddlers: City sightseeing meets playground hunting.

As already mentioned, Valencia is really easy to navigate with kids. The spacious parklands of the dried-up Túria riverbed run right along the centre of the city. With the children, we can swap sightseeing for breaks and playgrounds at any time. But even without kids, being able to relax at the Túria parklands is a real treat.

With its magnificent buildings, spacious plazas and cosy tapas bars, Valencia’s old town offers everything you need as a a happy (foodie) traveller. Here are a few impressions for you.

Bienvenidos, Valencia! Vom Plaza del Ayuntamiento (Rathaus) ...

Bienvenidos, Valencia! Setting out from the Plaza del Ayuntamiento (the town hall square) …

 

... spazieren wir weiter in Richtung der prächtigen Markthallen und Kirchen von Valencia ...

… we walk over to the magnificent market halls and churches of old town Valencia …

 

... Levin staunt ...

… our youngest, enjoying his first exploration of Valencia on foot …

 

... wir lieben es einfach, unseren Buben die Welt zu zeigen ...

… and we, as parents, just love showing our kids the world …

 

... und wenn dann mal beide beschäftigt sind, geht sich auch das eine oder andere Selfie zu zweit aus ;)

… once both are busy, we also manage to sneak in the odd selfie or two 😉

 

Bei so viel gutem Essen, wie hier den klassischen Patatas Bravas ...

Great food is what Valencia is all about. Just look at these beautiful Patatas Bravas …

 

... den Muscheln mit Oliven ...

… mussels with olives as tapas …

 

... oder der klassischen valencianischen Paella muss man einfach zufrieden sein!

… and of course, the town’s signature dish, Paella Valenciana!

 

Von der Altstadt ...

Gracias, Valencia …

 

... für die schöne Zeit hier ...

… for such a wonderful family time …

 

... wir können den Besuch nur empfehlen, hier beispielsweise auch abends auf die großen Türme am Beginn der Altstadt zu steigen für eine grandiose Aussicht.

… as we can only recommend you visit, too – and here’s a tip: Take a walk up the Torres Dels Serrans just before sunset – the views all over town are just magnificent.

 

Cycling with kids in Valencia.

Last year, the flat, bike-friendly city of Valencia had already made us look forward to a trip on bikes. Now that Liam knows how to ride his bike, and Levin is big enough to sit in a bike seat, we were able to realise this plan.

Our friend Michi researched bike hire companies in Valencia and found those that also hire out children’s bikes, helmets and bike seats. Based on our experience of them, we can really recommend Rent Bike Virgen as a family-friendly bike hire company: The service was great, very patient and friendly; Liam could even choose a bike with coaster brakes instead of two hand brakes on request, as he is more used to this from home.

From the hire station right in the city centre, it’s only a short ride down to the Túria parklands in the city’s former riverbed, which we cycled all the way down to the modern Ciutat de les Arts i les Ciències. The Túria offers just perfect cycle paths, reserved only for cycling. Ideal and stress-free to also navigate with (young) children.

Familien Radeln in Valencia ...

Cycling in Valencia …

 

... bietet neben den vielen Radwegen auch jede Menge Spielplätze entlang der Strecke ...

… offers not only a lot of fun on our bikes, but also several playgrounds to choose from along the way …

 

... mit Liam sind wir bis ins moderne Kunstviertel von Valencia geradelt ...

… Liam surprised us by cycling all the way down to “modern Valencia”, resulting in a 10 kilometre round trip …

 

... die Ecke Valencias zieht uns immer wieder an, hier haben wir auch schon im Vorjahr schöne Familienfotos machen können.

… we just love exploring this part of Valencia, and have done so for the best part of two years.

 

Wenn ich groß bin, radel ich noch mal durch Valencia. Fix!

The next time I’m in Valencia, I’ll sure ride my bike here again.

 

Liam’s highlight: Oceanogràfic Valencia.

I already told you in detail last year about what the Oceanogràfic, a huge aquarium near the Ciutat de les Arts i les Ciències, has to offer. This year, we took the time to attend a dolphin show – albeit with mixed feelings. Nevertheless, the tricks performed by the beautiful marine mammals were impressive to watch. The rest of the Oceanogràfic is also worth a visit, especially with children.

Bunt sind die Becken des Oceanogràfic von Valencia ...

Exploring the Oceanogràfic in Valencia …

 

... innen wie außen. Nach Meeresregionen und prominenten Meeresbewohnern unterteilt, findet Ihr hier vielfältige Informationen rund um das Leben im Meer.

… where you can learn all there is to life in the sea.

 

Die großen Tunnel mit einem gewaltigen Panoramablick direkt ins Haifischbecken über uns haben es Liam angetan ...

Liam loves “walking under the sharks” …

 

... und auch die Delfinshow des Oceanogràfic war beeindruckend.

… and we have enjoyed watching the dolphin show.

 

Tip: There is a large Corte Inglés department stores' in the immediate vicinity of Oceanogràfic. There is a well-stocked children's bookshop there, where we love to buy Spanish children's books.

By the way: There is a large Corte Inglés department store in the immediate vicinity of the Oceanogràfic. It has a well-stocked children’s bookshop, where we love to buy Spanish children’s books.

 

Family highlight: A sunset boat cruise on Albufera lake south of Valencia.

Once again, a big shoutout to our friends Michi and Alejandro, who drew our attention to the possibility of such a boat trip in the first place.

Lake Albufera, separated from the sea by a flat sand dune, is part of a nature reserve that is almost as large as Lake Neusiedl to the east of Vienna. The lake itself has already lost much of its original size due to the intensive irrigation of the surrounding rice fields. We learn all this and more on the boat trip, which costs just €6 per person and gives us a wonderful hour together on the lake.

If, like us, you are travelling with children or as a group, you can also take a taxi to the starting point of the boat tour “Paseos en Barca Albufera Rosa y Tonet” at a reasonable price: Lake Albufera is only some 12 kilometres outside of Valencia. If you are travelling with (small) children, it is best to book the taxi in advance so that one or more child seats are fitted (these are also compulsory in Spain).

Enjoy a paella before the boat trip: it couldn't be more regional, especially as the rice for the paella is grown in the immediate vicinity.

Enjoy a paella before the boat trip: it couldn’t be more local, especially as the rice for the paella is grown in the immediate vicinity.

 

Vor der Bootsfahrt besichtigen wir noch dieses Mini-Museum, ein ehemaliges Fischerhaus der Familie ...

Ahead of the tour, we visit this small, former fishing hut …

 

... bevor wir uns voll und ganz der wunderschönen Sonnenuntergangs-Stimmung auf dem See hingeben: Großes Kino garantiert!

… before surrendering to the  beautiful sunset atmosphere on Lake Albufera: Totally recommended for your next visit to the city, and a wonderful activity to share as a family.

 

Check out even more Valencia stories, including my account of our paella workshop, as well as my friend Michi’s expat travel blog, “Ein Freigeist auf Reisen“.

 

You may also like

Join the discussion