What a beautiful start to the year it has been. Already I have dived straight back into the adventures, with my first stop at Valencia, and I must admit this city is something special. It has just the right balance of city life; not too congested like London or Madrid, but still has the usual amenities and frequent public transport to get by. Better yet, this metropolitan city is perfectly situated on the coast, with the rush of the Mediterranean tides, and thanks to climate change, it bursts with consistently warm weather. It is weird to think that I visited in January (one of the coldest months of the year) and yet there I was only 2 hours’ flight away from sleeting London, with my shades and light jacket on, watching the ocean waves at the average temperature of 20 degrees. It is the little things like this whilst travelling the world that truly fascinate me, which reminds me of a quote I came across the other day:
The beauty of travel is that:
Becomes your extraordinary
I could not agree more with these simple yet enlightening words, as after my short but sweet trip to Valencia I begun to visualise myself living there. So allow me to reflect on what it is about this city that has me captivated so tremendously. First and foremost, the astounding architecture of the City of Arts and Sciences, home to Europe’s largest Aquarium, is absolutely enrapturing; the striking all white, futuristic buildings are a must see. I could not help but imagine myself gliding pass them on my way to work in a mini hovercraft or something (OK so maybe I am getting a bit ahead of myself). The next would be the accessible transport, coming from London I am accustomed to the packed, fast moving, hustle and bustle of the tube and buses. But in Valencia I found the Metrovalencia quite refreshing, it was easy to use, affordable, clean, comfortable, and spacious. As it was my first time in the city it always feels welcoming to me when you can navigate yourself around a city without too much confusion. Moreover, one of the things I long for most in a city, is diversity; being surrounded by various cultures different to my own is a privilege which I never take for granted. Especially since moving to a small town in Spain where the presence of ethnic minorities is a scarcity, but an experience in itself nonetheless. Appropriately, this helps to explain why inhabiting in Valencia would be more preferable to me, given that it is rich with diverse culture and authenticity which is clear to see all over the region. Last but not least, as I am a language student, the exposure to new languages always thrills me, and whilst sitting on the metro immersed in the Valencian language; through advertisements and station call-outs, I found myself thoroughly enjoying trying to self-teach the language through comparing it to Castilian Spanish. Grammar, linguistics, and the origins of the words we use to communicate today, all make my brain cells tingle, but we shall leave that for another blog post.
So to conclude, Valencia you have been ever so good to me, so much so that I shall be returning without a doubt, in order to explore the vast amount remaining that you have to offer. The splendid climate, trendy beaches, the alluring surroundings, and diversified people would have to be my highlights. Maybe one day I just might be able to call this place home for a while.