Valencia. Ultra Modern Buildings

The City of Arts and Sciences (Valencian: Ciutat de les Arts i les Ciències; is an entertainment-based cultural and architectural complex in the city of Valencia, Spain. It is the most important modern tourist destination in the city of Valencia and one of the 12 Treasures of Spain –Wikipedia)

El Museu de les Ciències Príncipe Felipe
MONUMENTAL SCULPTURE EXHIBITION BY MANOLO VALDÉS
The Hemisfèric
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Palau de les Arts Reina Sofía. Opera house
Beautiful Architecture
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Palau de les Arts Reina Sofía. Opera house
MONUMENTAL SCULPTURE EXHIBITION BY MANOLO VALDÉS
It feels like being transported to the future.
It’s an Architectural Showcase
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The Hemisfèric
This was the highlight of our cycling adventure in River Turia.

Valencia – The city of the The Holy Grail.

It is the 3rd largest city in Spain. Here are some of the photos of the places that you can visit.

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The National Ceramics Museum Gonzalez Marti
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The National Ceramics Museum Gonzalez Marti is housed in a palace that dates from the 15th century and was refurbished in 1740 on rococo style with a magnificent alabaster entrance.

 

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Torres de Serranos, is one of the twelve gates that formed part of the ancient city wall.
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The Miguelete bell tower of octagonal base, of Valencian Gothic style, has 50.85 meters of height, was realized between 1381 and 1424 by Andrés Juliá and others. Its access is made by a spiral staircase.
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An 18th century belfry crowns the Miguelete. After 270 steps on a spiral staircase you will have a 360° view of the city of Valencia.
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The Valencia Cathedral.
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Built on the site of a Roman temple, which later became a mosque the origins of the cathedral date back to the 13th century.
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The Holy Grail – http://www.catedraldevalencia.es/en/el-santo-caliz_historia.php
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The Mercat Central brings together almost 300 small traders and 1,500 people are involved in its daily activity. It is the largest centre of its kind in Europe specialising in fresh products and the first market in the world to rise to the challenge of computerising sales and offering home delivery, services which have been available since 2nd October 1996.
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Estació del Nord – this year (2017) it is 100 years old.
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Plaza de Toros de Valencia. Its structure is formed by a 48-sides polygon, 384 external arches.
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Església dels Sants Joans, It has its origin in an old mosque converted into a hermitage, a case similar to that of many other parishes in the city.
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Overlooking the City of Valencia from EL MIGUELETE.
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The Malvarrosa Beach is a fine golden sand beach, lined by a promenade, restaurants and cafés.
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It is the most famous beach in Valencia.

http://www.espanarusa.com; http://www.valencia.es; http://www.visitvalencia.com; wikipedia

Ħaġar Qim. OLDER than Stonehenge!

One of the must things that you have to do while in Malta is visit this site.  We did not take the hop on hop off bus but took the local bus from St. Julians. It’s surprising that this site is older than Stonehenge yet not as popular. Nevertheless, Ħaġar Qim is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, inscribed as part of ‘The Megalithic Temples of Malta’ in the World Heritage List.

IMG_7424There are 7 megalithic temples found on the islands of Malta. Ħaġar Qim is one of them.

IMG_7479Ħaġar Qim Temples first excavated in 1839, the remains suggest a date between 3600 – 3200 BC, a period known as the Ġgantija phase in Maltese prehistory.

Stonehenge earliest structures known in the immediate area are four or five pits, three of which appear to have held large pine ‘totem-pole like’ posts erected in the Mesolithic period, between 8500 and 7000 BC. (english-heritage.org.uk).

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Ħaġar Qim was in fact never completely buried as the tallest stones, remained exposed and featured in 18th and 19th century paintings.

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On the island of Malta, the temples of Hagar Qin, Mnajdra and Tarxien are unique architectural masterpieces, given the limited resources available to their builders.

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The six components of the property have a high level of authenticity. They consist of well-preserved remains of megalithic temples, with evidence of different phases of construction in Antiquity.

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During the spring and autumn Equinox (20-21 March, 21-22 September) the sun rises in line with the main doorway of the South Temple, passing through the central corridor to the innermost apse. During the Summer Solstice (21 June) and Winter Solstice (21 December), a narrow beam of light just makes its way through the main doorway at sunrise. On all these occasions Heritage Malta organises guided tours to allow visitors to witness the phenomenon.

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Decorated features found within the buildings bear witness to a high level of craftsmanship. These elements consist mainly of panels decorated with drilled holes and bas-relief panels depicting spiral motifs, trees, plants and various animals.

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The temple builders used locally available stone of which they had a thorough knowledge.

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They used hard coralline limestone for external walls and the softer globigerina limestone for the more sheltered interiors and decorated elements.

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Tip. After going inside the Ħaġar Qim. Stroll around the park and discover a beautiful historical scenery overlooking the sea and the islet of Fifla.

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Sources: whc.unesco.org; maltacultureguide.com and heritagemalta.org.

Valletta, Malta – A Walk back in time.

The capital city of Malta is a sight to behold. We went here in February of 2016. Malta – a small island in the southern Mediterranean Sea to the south of Italy – is one of the warmest destinations in Europe that you can visit when it is at it’s coldest in England. If winter is becoming too much to bear, Malta is a great winter escape. The climate is similar to spring or autumn with ample sunshine to brighten your day. It was amazing that this tiny country has so much to offer during the day and night. Here are a few photos I have taken whilst wandering around the streets of Valletta. Valletta is a port city and being half way between Gibraltar and the Suez Canal was strategically important to the British.

The Flag of Malta.

If you love doors, you will have a feast on the different doors of the houses and establishments around Valetta.

You will not miss the door handles in Valletta.

It was the end of the Baroque Festival when we arrived.

We were lucky to catch a glimpse of the street decorations. It was actually the day that they started to take them down.

Street of Balconies

Apartment blocks are adorned with balconies, not just in one street but almost in the entire city.

Malta is a very Catholic country, well, their national flag has an emblem of the cross, but the cross is actually the St George’s Cross, awarded to the entire island for their bravery during the Second World War by King George VI of the United Kingdom.

Malta was a British Crown Colony until 1964. Valletta was badly bombed during the Second World War and it’s inhabitants lived underground in tunnels during this period.

Notice the statues on the corner of the streets.

One part of the city contains crossroads featuring statues of Christian Saints.

The best way to go around Valetta is on foot.

Even though the city was heavily bombed during the Second World War it has a historic feel to it with plenty of interesting architecture and sites to visit. I will add more of these in my next update.