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City of Arts and Sciences
Wikipedia | Google | Google Images | FlickrThe City of Arts and Sciences is a cultural and architectural complex in Valencia, Spain. It features six beautiful modern buildings designed by famous architects Santiago Calatrava and Félix Candela throughout the 1990s that are located in the former riverbed of the River Turia. It is one of Valencia’s top tourist attractions due to the fascinating architectural design of the site and the many attractions it holds, including a science museum, an aquarium, a planetarium, and a performing arts center.
L'HemisfèricThe first building of the complex to be completed in 1998, L'Hemisfèric is an IMAX cinema and planetarium. It was designed to resemble a giant human eye, which symbolizes how visitors observe the world when they view audiovisual projections inside of it. Visitors are welcome to take guided tours of the building which focus on its architectural design and the audiovisual technology it uses, as well as stop in to see an educational film, an astronomy show, or a musical performance projected onto its immense screen.
El Museu de les Ciències Príncipe FelipeIn 2000, the interactive science museum, El Museu de les Ciències Príncipe Felipe, was the second building to open at the City of Arts and Sciences. It is the largest exhibition space in Spain, and was designed to resemble a whale skeleton. The museum is popular with visitors of all ages due to its diverse hands-on science exhibitions and fascinating displays such as the 15m tall sculpture depicting DNA and one of the longest Foucault pendulums in the world.
L'UmbracleWhile L'Umbracle is often known for its underground parking area that serves the entire City of Arts and Sciences, it was designed as the entrance to the complex. Above ground, it features a beautiful landscaped walk filled with indigenous plant species and sculptures. Unlike the other buildings it’s open free of charge, making it a great place for a relaxing stroll.
L'OceanogràficL'Oceanogràfic, which opened in 2003, is the largest oceanarium in Europe. It is divided into a number of different habitats that depict the most important sea and ocean ecosystems in the world, which house species such as penguins, sea lions, walruses, sharks, and whales. It also features one of the largest dolphinariums in the world, which provides daily educational dolphin shows that are a must-see attraction.
El Palau de les Arts Reina SofiaThe Palau de les Arts Reina Sofia is an opera house and performing arts center with a distinctive metallic roof first opened in 2005. It is divided into four unique performance spaces. The Main Hall, which features one of the largest stages in the world, is used for opera and ballet performances. The Auditorium, which seats over 1,400 people, is used for a variety of events, including classical music performances. The Master Classroom is used for chamber music performances, and the Martí i Soler Theater is used for small theatrical productions.
L'ÀgoraL'Àgora, the final building of the complex, opened in 2009. It is a large, multifunctional, covered space which can seat over 6,000 people. It is used for a wide variety of events, including concerts, exhibitions, conventions, and sporting events. Its most famous annual event is the Valencia Open 500, a professional men’s tennis tournament that is part of the ATP Tour.
Practical InformationHere’s everything you need to know in order to plan your visit to the City of Arts and Sciences.
How to Get There
By MetroMetrovalencia lines 3 and 5 are the closest metro lines to the City of Arts and Sciences. The nearest stop is Alameda, which is an approximately 15-minute walk.
By BusYou can reach the City of Arts and Sciences by using the EMT, Valencia’s urban bus system. Bus services that stop at the complex are: 1, 13; 14, 15; 19, 35; 40, and 95.
By Bike/on FootIt’s easy to get to the City of Arts and Sciences - just follow the paths along the former riverbed of the River Turia, which are now public parks. If you don’t have a bike, you can rent one from any of the 275 Valenbisi stations throughout the city for a reasonable price.
ParkingParking is available in the underground lot beneath L’Umbracle between 8:00 and 00:30 daily. It costs approximately € €2 ($2.30) per hour, at a maximum of € €24 ($28) per day.
HoursHours vary depending on the attraction, but most open at 10:00 each day and close between 18:00 and 24:00 depending on the season.
PricesHow much you spend at the City of Arts and Sciences depends on what you decide to do. If you’re trying to travel cheaply, you can always just walk around the complex, admire the architecture, take photos, and visit L’Umbracle for free. If you want to see and do everything, you can buy combined tickets valid for 2-3 days that allow you to take full advantage of the seemingly endless attractions in L'Hemisfèric, El Museu de les Ciències Príncipe Felipe, and L'Oceanogràfic, at a cost of about € €36 ($41) for adults.
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Author: ehuttner. Last updated: Mar 01, 2015