Nothing reflects the essence of Valencia like the Turia Gardens. This oasis of peace is an example of the ingenuity of the city, which transformed the old riverbed into a leisure area where history, modernity and nature are combined. Here you can enjoy sports, music, gastronomy, attractions for children, parties and much more, in a truly unique space.
Crossing the city from one end to the other, this green belt of more than nine kilometres has become a favourite spot for Valencians and visitors alike. As well as being an ideal environment to go running, cycling or relaxing with a picnic in the shade of the trees (there are shops with gourmet products nearby such as Mantequerías Ferrero or Vegamar to buy supplies), the Jardines del Turia host events and attractions that you should not miss on your visit to Valencia.
Don't know where to start? Follow our guide to the main points of interest on your tour:
- Let's start with the "head". At the western end of the Jardines del Turia, the Parque de Cabecera is a peaceful setting of gardens and lakes, and also home to one of the biggest attractions in Valencia: Bioparc. Young and old can get close - literally, thanks to invisible barriers - to different species of African fauna, from lions and rhinos to the curious meerkats. Before leaving this area, come to the Museum of the History of Valencia to take a tour of the city's illustrious past.
- In the Turia Gardens, you will not only find a cycle path to go from one end to the other and a 5 km running circuit, but also a wide range of sports facilities. From the football schools of Club Deportivo El Rumbo or Club Deportivo Serranos to the Estadio de Atletismo del Turia or the Jardines del Turia, Rugby Sports Ground, all kinds of athletes and sportsmen (as well as mere spectators) gather here. Are you a skateboarding fan? Don't miss the Skateplaza pitches, next to the Astros Fénix Beisfam Baseball Field.
- Music lovers have their own Mecca at the Palau de la Música, home to the Orquesta de València. With its characteristic glass vault, under which a leafy greenhouse is hidden, and the fountains that border it, it is one of the most Instagrammable points of the tour. But the real attraction is the concerts in its auditorium, which this spring include performances by the Russian conductor Vladimir Ashkenazy and the Portuguese pianist Maria Joao Pires. The Menut Palau programme is an original initiative to bring children closer to music.
- Without a doubt, the most popular destination for the 'little ones' is Gulliver Park, with its giant statue of the famous traveller. Here they can climb up his tights, crawl up his sleeves or slide down his mane... and above all give free rein to their imagination and laughter. More than one adult would like to return to childhood, just to be able to climb this giant too!
- - At no time during your walk through the Turia Gardens will you forget that you are actually following the course of a river. The proof is in the many bridges you will have to cross: from the Trinity Bridge, the oldest (15th century), to the modern Assut d'Or Bridge (popularly known as "el jamonero"), one of the three bridges designed by Santiago Calatrava. It is worth going up to the surface to admire the colourful Flower Bridge or the gargoyles of the Bridge of the Kingdom.
- When the colossal structure of the Palau de les Arts appears on the horizon, you will know that you are approaching the real star of the Turia Gardens: the Ciudad de les Arts y las Ciencias. Find your favourite spot among the spectacular buildings of the complex designed by Santiago Calatrava... and make sure you have enough memory and battery in your mobile to take pictures!
- That's not all. The old Turia riverbed often hosts open-air concerts or events such as the Mostra de Vinos y Alimentos Tradicionales (Traditional Wine and Food Exhibition) of the Valencia Region. The main fireworks are displayed at Las Fallas or the Gran Fira de Juliol are also set off from here. A place to celebrate or relax, the Turia Gardens are not only the lungs of Valencia, but also its heart.