Today, I am back at my blog to accompany you to a very special place in my city, the City of Arts and Sciences in Valencia.
If you have never been, you may well need perhaps a whole day to visit too… but trust me, it is not. In this post I will focus on the buildings of the Hemisfèric and the Science Museum, the Umbracle area and the huge lakes that surround it with their magical highlights …
Although this architectural set futuristic also has other wonders such as the Palau de Les Arts Reina Sofía, the Agora and the Oceanogràfic.
Without further a do, let’s start on our visit today…lets go!!
- Panoramic views of the City of Arts and Sciences
Wherever you arrive from, the first time that someone is at the city of Arts and Sciences, the first thing you feel is an internal “wowwwww”… inevitable! Whenever I’ve accompanied visitors to visit here for the first time, “always”, everyone has been impressed: the huge size of its buildings, in white, turquoise lakes, its special light and brightness…
We will start the day from Monteolivete Bridge, closest to the building of the Hemispheric, for from here, we will enjoy our first views of the City of Arts and Sciences.
This elongated area full of Palm trees and typical Mediterranean vegetation is divided into two areas: first, a public garden, where you can stroll and cross from the street to the city of Arts and Sciences, and the second a nightlife area in the summer months.
On the side facing, the City of Arts and Science we find the Paseo del Arte, an Esplanade that occupies the entire length of the Umbracle and which usually houses sculptural exhibitions.
On the side closest to the bridge of l´Assut of l´Or is The Garden of Astronomy, where we meet a gnome, plinths, Sun or moon, watches… if you are curious to know what I’m talking about? Then do not you can skip this “stellar” point of the visit.
Before going down from the Umbracle area to the area of the Lakes, I suggest you enjoy once again the impressive panoramic views of the whole city from the top…
- Lakes of the Science Museum
Around the Science Museum, the highlights are its huge lakes, reflecting in the days of light winds, the majestic huge mirrors of the architectural structures of the buildings that surround it.
Several lakes are located in strategic locations to bring freshness and lightness to this landscape where the white concrete with glass and iron contrasts each other. Textures, volumes and much trencadis covering the surface of each building with delicate forcefulness…
The south lake now houses an exhibition of six sculptures of the Valencian Manolo Valdés. This versatile space is always alive… with or without water, it hosts activities as diverse as music festivals, presentations of cars or even on occasion, equestrian competitions…
The Hemispheric was the first building in the whole of The City of Arts and Sciences that opened its doors back in 1998. The “eye that sees all” Santiago Calatrava design protects under its perfect sphere an IMAX screen for projections of documentaries and films.
The base or ring perimeter is a unique place with a special resonance. For years, thanks to my work of organizer of congresses, I have been lucky enough to be able to hold many gala dinners or product presentations in this space… local guests or not, everyone is impressed with the “dynamism” of the building addition by the spectacular views.
You should be mindful that if you are going to see a screening of a film or documentary, it is important to check schedules in advance and arrive early enough. The distances between buildings can be considerable and you need to be careful (if you go with children, they may not go as fast as you would like at times).
Important: A great activity to do in the Hemispheric lakes from March to October is the rental of kayaks, water bikes, transparent boats or huge balls where you ride above the water and all this… “Without getting wet”… impressive! Book a good time for any of these activities, no matter your age, fun and laughter insured!
- The Science Museum
42,000 m2, 26.000 m2 of exhibition, 4000 crystals covering the outer structure of the building… These are some astonishing figures that describe this very impressive building. There are many reasons to visit this space, among them the immensity and its sheer size.
A highlight in the Museum is the enormous sculpture of the string of DNA that is located in the Museum’s largest hall.
Also surprising is the huge Foucault pendulum 34 metres in length, one of the largest in the world.
Numerous and varied exhibitions and workshops that lead us to discover the age of the dinosaur, how to create light, zero gravity, space-age, the evolution of the mobile phone… as diverse activities as you can imagine: in the same building can challenge a robot playing the 3 in a row or even see the birth live chicks!
All exposed in a very educational way, up close and with activities for all ages.
Before you end your day one last thing, I would like you to put something to test. Go to the connecting arches that you will find on the outside of the Museum, at access points East and West. What I´m suggesting is very simple, you place your group of friends into two groups, one on each side of the arch. From here test the sound and you will soon realize you can communicate in a very magical way (and without yelling!). Try it because it works!
With permanent exhibitions and other shows, there is always a place in the City of Arts and Sciences within the reach for everyone, the Museum is a must-see, especially if you are going with children.
Where to eat
Within the city of Arts and Sciences there are spaces to eat for all budgets and tastes, personally, whenever I’m in the area prefer to go out to eat at one of the restaurants that are on the Paseo de la Alameda.
My suggestion is without doubt Llebeig Café, a nearby coffee shop with terrace, ideal for salads, tapas, snacks… (important detail, the kitchen is open continuously from noon until midnight).
Other alternative options, which are also good, although a little further away, are the remaining of the malls near the City of Arts and Sciences: El Saler and Aqua Multiespacio.
And that is the end of my post on the City of Arts and Sciences… I hope you have discovered new things which are from Valencia and those that are not. Perhaps you would now like to tele-transport yourself immediately wanting to visit this “impressive place” in the not-too-distant future. You will soon be aware of how photogenic Valencia really is, not just for leisure but also among the world’s best known modern architecture.
See you in my next post! 🙂
* I am specially thankful to the City of Arts and Sciences for their collaboration
Translation by Mark Grimes http://www.becenglish.com/