Tuesday: We were driven up to Valencia with a stop on the way, arriving at our excellently located hotel in the heart of the city at about 3pm.
Our tour guide, Ivan, was there to welcome us and tell us all about the area we were in as well as giving us various tips about the city and our stay.
Several of us were keen to visit the City of Arts and Science and Ivan was happy to contact the ticket office for us. That evening we all went our separate ways to explore the local area with its many bars and restaurants.
Jose finally left us outside the cathedral, with the afternoon to ourselves. Some of us visited the Cathedraland saw the Holy Grail on display, others took the tourist buses around the city whilst others just strolled, had long lunches or shopped.
Beluga whales, walrus and dolphins swim around you and over your head.
The centre is divided into different areas – the Tropics, the Arctic and the Antarctic, there are also aviaries with hundreds of bird species (or so it seemed) as well as penguins, seals, storks and flamingos. Then you can watch dolphins performing various clever tricks, this brought tears to my eyes (but I get emotional about everything).
After lunch at the Oceanográfic we wandered down to the Hemisféric where we saw a 3D digital projection about the Hubble telescope – its history and some of its amazing photographs in space.
Our final visit of the day was to the Fallas de Valencia Museum, (Fallas =”the fires” in Valencian) where we saw some of the fantastic “ninots” (giant figures) prepared for the annual Fiesta held every March. This ends on the night of the bonfires (19th March) with all of these amazing giant figures set alight.
Friday: Farewell to a great city and a great trip, there is so much more to come back and see.