Explore Valencia’s hidden gems and discover the true heart of this beautiful city before everyone else. These places won’t stay secret for long.
Valencia is a city filled with history, culture, and beauty, but it’s not always easy to find the hidden gems that truly make it special. From underground museums and quirky buildings to hidden churches and walled gardens, Valencia’s most fascinating secret spots are like a treasure trove waiting to be discovered. And the best thing? Most of them are free to visit.
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1. Palacio de Cervelló
Recently opened to the public, Palacio de Cervelló is one of most beautiful secret places in Valencia. Secret for now, at least.
This centrally located 18th century palace has been the official residence of the Spanish monarchs in Valencia since 1810. Much of the interior has been remodelled over the years and the period furniture on display is not the original one.
However, the rooms open to the public, and the ballroom in particular, are breathtaking. The palace also hosts temporary exhibitions, the municipal archives and some really old and valuable books.
2. Centro del Carmen
Centro del Carmen is an eclectic art center located in the historic district of El Carmen. Here you’ll find some of the most thought-provoking temporary exhibitions in Valencia.
This center is hosted in a former convent whose construction most likely started in the 15th century.
The icing on the cake is the two cloisters (one Gothic and the other Renaissance) and the orange garden, a beautiful secret spot ideal for relaxing on a hot summer day.
3. Cabanyal Market
The Cabanyal Market is a large indoor market in the old fishermen’s village of El Cabanyal now part of Valencia.
While the market’s architecture may not be as noteworthy as that of other markets in Valencia, the main draw is the seafood stalls selling some of the freshest and highest quality fish in the area.
Stop by Oiled & Salt to grab some takeout of the local dish, titaina de Cabanyal, made with salted tuna belly, or try one of their cod dishes.
4. Lindala Restobar
Also in the El Cabanyal, this eclectic restobar is my go-to place after a day at the beach. I just love everything about it, from the relaxing vibe and welcoming staff to the name inspired by a local legend about a girl lost at sea.
The beautifully restored building, once a brandy and lamp factory, is tucked away on a nondescript street behind a large and heavy wooden door.
I usually come here to relax with a drink in their secret garden. But they also have a cozy indoor space and a boutique hotel that can be booked here.
5. Marxalenes Park
Looking for a quiet spot to escape the hustle and bustle of the city? Marxalenes Park is a large green lung in the neighborhood with the same name.
This park feels more like a forest than any other of the parks in Valencia, with oak, elm, and poplar trees providing ample shade.
Marxalenes Park is one of the best hidden gems in Valencia and it also features a skating park and a large playground. Along the peaceful walking paths, you will find plenty of benches and secret nooks.
6. San Miguel de Los Reyes Monastery
San Miguel de Los Reyes is considered the prototype for the El Escorial. Originally a Cistercian monastery, the site came under the ownership of the Hieronymites in the 16th century.
Some three hundred years later the monastery was seized by the state and transformed into a prison, then a school and more recently, a library.
Off the beaten path of tourists 364 days a year, San Miguel de Los Reyes literally takes the spotlight every September 29th when a ray of sunshine illuminates the secret resting place of the Duke of Calabria and his spouse.
7. La Almoina Archeological Museum
La Almoina is a truly hidden gem… hidden underground, that is!
Located just a stone’s throw away from the cathedral, Almoina is an unusual place that offers an immersive and unparalleled experience.
Take your time as you walk the old roads of Cardus and Decumanus Maximus. See the remnants of buildings dating back to the founding of the city by the Romans in 138 BC, through the Visigoth and Muslim eras. And admire the glass ceiling, covered with a pool of water, creating an interesting effect.
8. The Jewish House
Casa Judía aka the Jewish House is one of the most surprising buildings in Valencia. Reminiscent of a wedding cake, this colorful residential house was erected in 1930 in Valencian Art Deco style.
The building is inhabited, so you cannot go inside, but the façade is so stunning, you really shouldn’t miss it.
This hidden gem is close to the bullring and is decorated with Hindu, Arabic, and Egyptian elements. Its name comes from the Star of David above the entrance.
9. San Juan del Hospital Church
San Juan del Hospital is the oldest church in Valencia, built in the 13th century, right after the Reconquista, in the Romanesque style. It has a surprising Baroque chapel and hosts the only medieval cemetery in Valencia.
From the street, you can hardly guess this is a church and even after entering the peaceful and secluded courtyard you might be none the wiser.
The fact that not many locals know about it either makes it a truly one of Valencia’s best-kept secrets.
10. Centro de Artesanía de la Comunidad Valenciana
This is an easily overlooked exhibition center even though it’s situated between the Silk Museum and MuVIM, two major museums in Valencia.
If you’re looking for something different and for a moment all to yourself, head inside this beautiful space and admire all the gorgeous and unique objects created by artisans and makers from all four corners of the Valencian Community.
The exhibitions might change, but the creativity and beauty you’ll encounter here are everlasting.
11. Espai Verd
One of the most intriguing hidden gems in Valencia, Espai Verd is a residential complex with floating floors and Escher-inspired stairs.
This fascinating place was built in the 1980s on the edge of the Benimaclet neighborhood and at a first glance, it looks inspired by a sci-fi movie.
On a closer look, however, the dystopian aura becomes obvious. As vines are taking over and plaster is falling off the walls, people continue to live here, even as this innovative housing project pretty much failed.
12. Casa Museo Benlliure
This house museum is one of Valencia’s best-kept secrets. Hidden behind a nondescript façade, it used to be the residence of the Benlliures, one of the most prominent families of artists in Valencia.
The house was built towards the end of the 19th century and at the ground level it still preserves the original family furniture.
The surprise, however, comes as you step into the walled garden – an unexpected oasis of peace and quiet. Be sure to take a peek inside José Benlliure’s studio at the very end – it’s a true hidden gem.
13. Sala Alfons el Magnànim
This striking Neo-Byzantine chapel, built in the late 19th century, features a unique architectural style not found anywhere else in Valencia. In spite of this, it remains in relative obscurity, probably because it only opens for special events.
I’ve been to several (free!) concerts here and all I can say is that if you’re ever presented with the opportunity to go, don’t hesitate.
This secret spot is located in the courtyard of Centre Cultural La Beneficència, a massive building that was originally a convent and a community support center before becoming a cultural hub.
14. Ermita dels Peixets
This little-known whitewashed chapel in Neo-Gothic style is located just north of Patacona beach, close to the sea. It’s surrounded by a beautiful palm grove and is every bit of a hidden gem.
According to the legend, a local priest on the way to see the sick slipped and dropped the Communion wafers into the water. Later on, he managed to retrieve them with the help of three little fish.
Ermita dels Peixets was built in 1901 and commemorates this miracle that took place in this very spot almost seven centuries ago. Totally worth going off the beaten track!