One of the greatest pleasures of visiting a destination is to immerse yourself in its culture and customs and share these experiences with the locals. Valencia is a city that welcomes everyone with open arms, and nothing can make a Valencian prouder than to share his or her city and its traditions with those who visit.
Do you want to feel like a real Valencian? Try out some of these experiences:
1.Take part in aPilotamatch
This very traditional and Valencian sport is still lived with real passion. To test this, all you have to do is attend a Valencian Pilota match in places like Trinquet de Pelayo. This is a type of double (or triple) tennis, but without a racket, where the players hit a small leather ball with their hands. The rhythm is frentic and the spectators experience the action very, very closely... so much that if they do not pay attention, they can be hit by the ball. Each of the local fans will be happy to explain some of the rules so you can follow the game. As they say in Valencia... va de bó! (It's going great!)
2. Don't miss the mid-morning snack
The mid-morning snack or esmorzaret is a real institution in València. A Valencian does not need a real breakfast, or he just drinks a quick cup of coffee. But they will never miss this tasty mid-morning snack. Traditionally, one nibbles some cacaos del collaret (peanuts) and olives while the chef prepares a half or whole baguette with an omelette or another speciality. All this, together with a drink, can be found at very affordable prices in bars all over the city and is ideal to regain your strength before continuing your visit.
3. Prepare a paella
Few things arouse as many passions - and discussions - as paella (ask Jamie Oliver...!). Every Valencian has his or her own opinion about the best way to prepare a traditional Valencian paella (with chicken and rabbit, no seafood and much less chorizo sausage), the best ingredients or tricks to make the perfect paella. If you want to add your own paella, first learn the basics in the Rice and Paella School (Escuela de Arroces y Paellas), and then you can impress your friends and family at home with your own paella.
4. Immerse yourself in a mascletá
Valencia's pyrotechnics with spectacular fireworks like in Las Fallas is considered one of the best in the country and is part of every celebration or festival. But of all fireworks, the mascletá is perhaps the most typical of Valencia. It is a real madness of noise, vibrations and the smell of gunpowder in the middle of the day, which is incomprehensible for many. Valencians will always try to be as close as possible to the action, to experience it with all their senses. Do you dare to?
5. Become a member of a brass band
València is also famous for its traditional brass bands, and it seems true that everyone plays an instrument or was once a member of a local brass band. The love of music is handed down from the children's cradle - you only must see how many young people proudly join in the parades of the bands at each festival. If you want to imitate them, you can find various music schools in the city, or you can enrol in a Batucada workshop. Or visit de Pérgola in the Marina de València and enjoy the concerts.
Let's go... Welcome to València, 100%!