Before moving to Spain we had never visited Valencia. You don’t seem to hear as much about this city as you do Barcelona or Madrid, but it’s such an amazing place to visit and has become one of our favourites.
Is Valencia worth visiting?
Yes! A perfect mix of old and new, there is so much to see in Valencia for both adults and children. Whilst it’s the 3rd largest city in Spain, we have found that it’s much more relaxed and quieter than some of the more well known Spanish cities than can be quite hectic for a family holiday.
Whether you’re visiting in the heat of the summer or on a colder winter’s day, you will be able to find plenty of things to do both indoors and outside with children in Valencia.
Where is Valencia?
The city of Valencia is located on the Eastern coast of Spain, in the Valencian Community. Valencia is approximately 166km from Alicante and 139km from Benidorm. Valencia has an airport approximately 8km from the city centre and also a Metro system, making it easy to visit Valencia from other parts of Spain as well as from other countries.
Interesting facts about Valencia
- Valencia is the birthplace of paella, so if you want a truly authentic paella this is the place for you.
- Valencia’s aquarium L’Oceanogràfic isn’t only the largest aquarium in Europe but also one of the largest in the world.
- In 2020 Valencia was named the best expat city in the world.
- Valencia has been voted as the healthiest city to live in for 2 consecutive years.
- The Vatican recognises Valencia as the city of the Holy Grail.
If you are living or visiting the Costa Blanca, here are some suggestions of things to do in Valencia with kids…
Visit Hemisfèric for a 180° cinema experience
First on our list of things to do in Valencia with kids is a trip to El Ciudad de las Artes y las Ciencias, or the City of Arts and Sciences. You will find so much to do that you could spend a whole day here without even venturing into the city itself. One of our favourites is Hemisfèric, a 3D cinema showing various documentaries on a 180° screen. The building itself is amazing, designed to look like a human eye.
Here you can watch films about space, the ocean, dinosaurs, the Amazon, and more – there are lots of seasonal events so keep an eye on the timetable. We watched a fantastic film about what lurks deep down in the ocean and want to go back again to watch the Secrets of the Universe.
You don’t need to worry about the language barrier as on entry you are given a pair of headphones so you can set the audio to your chosen language.
The films last around an hour and cost €8 per person, though you can also buy cheaper tickets along with the Science Museum or Oceanarium.
Explore Oceanogràfic – Europe’s biggest aquarium
As well as being the biggest aquarium in Europe, Oceanogràfic is also home to the longest underwater tunnel in Europe, and the only family of beluga whales in Europe.
Here children can learn about various conservation projects and explore many habitats and eco-systems including the Arctic and Antarctic, Mediterranean, the crocodile preserve, Dolphinarium, and Tropics. You’ll see different types of fish and birds, penguins, sharks, seals, whales, jellyfish, and many more.
Tickets are €31.90 for adults and €23.80 for under 12’s. If you’re going to be visiting some of the other attractions in the City of Arts and Sciences it’s worth buying your tickets together to get a discount.
Get interactive at the Science Museum
One of our favourite things to do in Valencia with kids of all ages is pay a visit to the science museum. The Museu in the City of Arts and Sciences is housed in a huge building with three floors of amazing exhibitions on science and technology.
There is a whole area dedicated children, ‘Kiddies Corner’, with lots of hands on and interactive displays. In fact the motto of the whole museum is ‘Prohibido No Tocar’ which means it’s forbidden NOT to touch!
Many of the exhibitions change regularly but feature things like space, animals, sound, the body, and so much more. There are also workshops, classrooms, and shows on lots of different subjects.
Tickets are €8 per person but again it works out cheaper to buy with one of the other attractions. We allowed ourselves half a day to explore the museum and still didn’t have enough time!
Go on a Scavenger Hunt around Valencia
An activity that will definitely keep the kids busy is this fantastic self-guided scavenger hunt around Valencia. Completed at your own pace, you’ll solve puzzles while you explore the city and along your way you’ll see the Cathedral of Valencia, the Micalet Tower, El Carmen District, and the Virgin Square. It’s all done on your own smartphone so very easy to follow.
Play in Turia Gardens
Running from one end of Valencia to the other is a fantastic park called Jardines del Turia or Turia Gardens. It’s one of the largest urban parks in Spain and covers 9km of green space.
Here you will find play parks, skateboard parks, basketball courts, fountains, cafes, and many paths for both walking and cycling.
One of our favourite parts of the park is the play area designed to look like Gulliver from the story “Gullivers Travels”, with the giant tied down and featuring slides, tunnels, climbing, and more.
The park is very flat so is a popular place to cycle through on rented bikes or segways which you can hire from many places around the city.
And the best part is it’s completely free!
Have a day out at BioParc Valencia
If you are spending more than a couple of days in the city with children, this is a must for your Valencia itinerary. For a great family day out in Valencia, you can visit the animal park BioParc – a unique African themed zoo designed around the the “zooimmersion” concept, where animals live in open spaces similar to their natural habitat rather than in enclosures.
Animals that usually live together in the wild are displayed in the same enclosures, as well as groups of different species that coexist in the same habitats. There are no visible barriers, making it feel as though you are in the wild along with the animals.
In the park you can see gorillas, elephants, rhinos, giraffes, lions, hippos, crocodiles, and more. There are also regular childrens’ activities and events.
Tickets cost €18.00 for children and €23.80 for adults, with parking costing €6 for the day. You can buy your tickets for BioParc Valencia here.
Climb the Torres de Serranos
If your children love castles and anything Medieval then the Torres de Serranos or Serrano Towers are worth a visit. These 14th century towers were originally part of the fortified gates in the ancient city wall of Valencia.
You can climb the stairs to the top of the towers where you’ll have an amazing view across the city and river.
You’ll probably only spend an hour here at the most but with tickets costing just €2 to enter it’s worth a visit.
Hop on the Valencia tourist bus
Walking around a city with children can get tiring so a great way for little legs to see the city is to jump on the tourist bus. You can get a 24 or 48 hour ticket which allows you to hop on and off as many times as you want, allowing you to see as many of the attractions in Valencia as possible. There are 17 stops which include the City of Arts & Sciences, Bioparc Valenica, the port, and various museums. You’ll also get to learn all about the city via the commentary. You can book tickets for the Valencia tourist bus here.
Play at the LEGO® Fun Factory
Another great thing to do in Valencia with kids, is a favourite with children both young and old! If you have Lego fans in the family then why not head to the LEGO® Fun Factory in the Aqua Shopping Centre.
A a 250 square meter exhibition of LEGO®, including Duplo for younger children, you can build until your hearts’ content.
Every three months part of the theme changes, so there is always something new to see. You can find an official LEGO® video game area, giant pools full of LEGO® Bricks, a LEGO® Friends karaoke area, a LEGO® City construction area, and more.
Perfect for a rainy day in Valencia an completely free of charge!
Visit the Valencia CF Stadium
If you’re children are into football, they’ll no doubt enjoy the guided tour of Mestalla, the home of Valencia’s football team. Valencia CF is the fourth oldest club in Spain, and the fifth with the most national and international titles. The Mestalla Forever guided tour takes you to the press room, the locker rooms, the exit tunnel to the field, and you get to see the trophies up close.
We hope this list has given you some inspiration of things to do in Valencia with kids!
Where to stay in Valencia
If you are looking for accommodation in Valencia, here are our recommendations:
Valencia Old Town Apartment
Goerlich by Alma Suites is a lovely modern apartment in a great central location. Just 300 metres from the centre of Valencia, with free WiFi, kitchen with applicances, and a choice of different sized apartments and studios. You will be close to the Turia Gardens and just 8 km from Valencia airport which you can get a shuttle service to and from at the apartments.
If you want to be close to the beach, this first line beachfront apartment is in the perfect location for a family holiday. A two bedroom apartment with rooftop pool and situated just situated 70 metres from Patacona Beach.
Central hotel with family rooms
A great hotel that offers family rooms rather than you having to book 2 hotel rooms is the Primus Valencia. This ultra-modern hotel is located only 600 metres from the City of Arts and Sciences so you will be in a fantastic central location. There is also a bus stop 75 metres away making it easy to get around city centre and beaches. The hotel has a spa, gym, and all-year round outdoor swimming pool so you can relax after a busy day in the city.
Central apartment with breakfast
For families who want the convenience of an apartment but with breakfast included, check out the ABCyou Bed & Breakfast. Located right in the heart of Valencia, you’ll have an air-conditioned room with free Wi-Fi, just 5 minutes’ walk from the bullring and Estació del Nord Station. You can have breakfast in the ABC’s coffee lounge before heading out for the day.
You can find more great deals on accommodation in Valencia here:Booking.com
For more ideas, and to book tickets, tours and experiences in Valencia, visit Get Your Guide.
Do you have any other favourites?