The 10 Best Museums In Valencia
The 10 Best Museums In Valencia
As the third-largest city in Spain, and with a history that dates back to 138 BC when it was first established as a Roman colony, there are plenty of reasons to pass a few days in Valencia. The city is a fascinating juxtaposition of new and old, and yet the two seem to have melted seamlessly into one another in a way that is neither jarring nor contrived.
The climate here is ideal almost all year round, and being surrounded by fertile lands, combined with an enormous port, it was almost inevitable that this should become a wealthy Spanish city. As is often the case, that wealth facilitated some impressive cultural developments, including many fabulous museums and art galleries.
It is easy to see Valencia as the perfect beach resort, complete with fabulous dining and great nightlife, and to overlook some of these wonderful cultural venues, but you'll be doing yourself a disservice if you do. The museums and galleries on offer are exceptional, so make use of Valencia's luggage storage locations and explore some of the museums that Valencia has to offer.
Museum of Fine Arts of Valencia
El Museo de Belles Artes de Valencia is the second largest museum in the whole of Spain and offers its visitors an impressive range of classical art among both its permanent collection and some of the visiting exhibits that it frequently hosts.
The fine arts museum itself is housed in a building that was originally the San Pio Seminary College and was built in 1683. Some of the earliest works you will find are the medieval works called Primitivos Valencianos but there is also an impressive collection of Renaissance art and it was in Valencia that this style first emerged in Spain.
Not to be missed are the two permanent exhibits of Joaquin Sorolla and Francisco de Goya. Both of these painters have rooms dedicated to their works. In addition to the collection of paintings covering the 15th to 19th centuries, there are also sculptures, etchings, and architectural pieces.
The museum is open every day of the week except Monday from 10.00 to 20.00. You will have free entry.
L'Institut Valencia d'Art Modern
If classical art is not really your thing, and you prefer your art to be a little more on the contemporary art side, then Valencia's Institute of Modern Art may be the place for you. Known locally as IVAM, this museum houses over 11,000 pieces and has an impressive reputation in the world of contemporary art.
The objective is to provoke discussion and make visitors reflect on the works on display. They also hold numerous events and workshops. The two primary permanent exhibits are the sculptures of Julio Gonzalez and paintings by renowned impressionist Ignazio Pinazo. Both of the exhibitions are constantly being augmented by a wide spectrum of temporary displays.
Situated at 118 Guillem de Castro, the museum is open Tuesday to Sunday from 10.00 to 19.00 and from 10.00 to 21.00 on Fridays. It remains closed on Mondays and the entry fee for adults is six euros.
Museu Valencia de la-lustraciade la Modernitat
Probably best referred to by its acronym MuVIMonTU, this is a most unusual museum designed to study and analyze the concept of thought. They describe their mission as "an attempt to explain the way in which the Western society developed from the Middle Ages to nowadays".
This museum really does offer a broad spectrum of exhibits, both permanent and temporary. Housed in the basement, one of the permanent features is a three-dimensional model of Valencia. Others include Adventures of Thought and the Medieval Tower while the visiting exhibits change on a regular basis.
Entry is two euros but if you have purchased a ticket to the Museums of Ethnology or Prehistory on the same day, that ticket will allow you free access to MuVim. Opening hours are 10.00 to 14.00 and 16.00 to 20.00 hours Tuesday to Saturday and 10.00 to 20.00 on Sundays. The museum is closed on Mondays.
Gonzalez Marti National Museum of Ceramica and Sumptuous Arts
This museum is unusual as it is the only national museum in Valencia, as most of the other national museums are situated in Madrid. Here, in addition to a huge display of ceramics, you will also find other fascinating exhibits ranging from furniture to clothing and including paintings and graphic arts.
The collections themselves are absorbing but added to that, the museum is housed in the classic Rococo Palace of Marquis de dos Aguas. It is possible to do guided tours of the building during which you will learn an enormous amount about this fascinating style of architecture.
The museum is located at 2 Carer du Poetica Querol and is open Tuesday to Saturday 10.00 to 14.00 and 16.00 to 20.00 hrs. On Sundays and most public holidays, it is open from 10.00 to 14.00 hrs and it is closed on Mondays. Entry is three euros for adults but is free on Saturdays from 16.00 until closing time.
Del Carmen Cultural Center
Rather than being a museum or art gallery, this building houses the museum associations. It has no permanent exhibits but instead is home to a continuously changing array of contemporary and regional art.
The building that houses this is a restored convent that lies in the popular historic neighborhood of El Carmen which is a great place for a stroll. Opening hours are Tuesday to Sunday 11.00 to 21.00 hrs and the address is 2 Carer del Museu.
Municipal Museum of Natural Sciences
Here is one for those who are looking for an attraction that is a little more earthy than art galleries and the sumptuous arts. This museum offers plenty of dinosaur skeletons discovered by the famed Valencian paleontologist Rodrigo Botet. That tends to be very popular with younger members of the family who may not be too impressed by some of the previous art collections. It's just one of many great things to do with kids in Valencia.
There is a lot more to this museum than simply dinosaur bones. Here they dive into natural science and history beginning at the Renaissance period and exploring discoveries right through to the twentieth century.
To make this adventure even more attractive, the museum is situated in Jardines de Viveros which is one of the most beautiful in Valencia. It's also a fairly short walk from the train station.
The museum is open Tuesday to Saturday from 10.00 to 19.00 and on Sundays and public holidays from 10.00 to 15.00 hrs, and the entrance fee for adults is two euros.
Museum of Prehistory and Ethnology Museum
With a history that dates all the way back to the Roman occupation and beyond, it will come as no surprise that there is some splendid history to explore in Valencia. In fact, the Museum of Prehistory and the Museum of Ethnology are actually two separate museums, but they both cohabit in an old building that once served as a charity house. Separately, they would make great visits, but combined, they form a wonderful history museum.
Called La Beneficencia Cultural Center, but known generally as 'La Bene', these two museums can both be accessed using the same entrance ticket which will allow the ardent history enthusiast to really make a day of it. If you visit on the same day, that ticket will also gain you entry to MuVim.
The Ethnology Museum comprises five permanent exhibits highlighting man's relationship with the environment. The Museum of Prehistory deals with several periods including Paleolithic, Visigoth, and Roman, among others.
There is also a cafeteria and shop and even an attached church which sometimes hosts musical events.
The museums are located at Carrera Corona 36 just minutes from the city center and the opening hours are Tuesday to Sunday 10.00 to 20.00 hrs.
Science Museum Principe Felipe
The Felipe Science Museum has helped to promote Valencia as the City of Arts and Science. It attempts to promote curiosity and knowledge around the field of science and technology. It offers a broad range of exhibits and interactive displays. They also host regular workshops and demonstrations in which audiences are encouraged to become involved in scientific experiments of different kinds.
In addition to being a museum, this organization hosts regular congresses that attract scientists and experts from around the globe. The building that houses the museum covers 40,000 square meters and is a wonderful demonstration of modern architecture.
The museum is open 365 days a year and opening hours almost always start at 10.00 hrs although that may change on Christmas Day and some of the other important public holidays. Closing hours vary depending on the time of year and the day of the week that you are visiting.
Tickets cost from six euros twenty but it is worth noting that the museum has a ticketing arrangement with the Oceanographic Sciences Museum and Hemispheric, so if you are planning on visiting either of these attractions it might be worth looking at their website to see what is on offer. The museum is on Avenue Professor Lopez Pinero.
Jose Benlliure House Museum
Jose Benlliure was a painter very much associated with Valencia in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. This museum used to be his family home and houses many of his works and some of his equally popular son Pepino. It is among the most popular museums in Valencia.
Even if you are not a fan of the paintings of these two artists, this museum is well worth a visit. Jose Benlliure lived a somewhat bourgeois lifestyle and the house offers a rare insight into some of the furnishings and ornaments that he gathered during his lifetime. The gardens are simply sublime and many people visit just to be engulfed in this fabulous green oasis.
The house can be found at 23 Calle Blanquerias and it is open from Tuesday to Saturday 10.00 to 14.00 hrs and 16.30 to 20.30 hrs. On Sundays and public holidays, the hours are 10.00 to 15.00 hrs and it is closed on Mondays. Tickets cost two euros.
Valencia Cathedral Museum
This fine collection of art was first started in 1761 though it was largely destroyed during the French occupation and had to be restarted. It contains artworks by Goya, Maella and The Last Supper painted by Juan de Juanes. Housed in a beautiful building, this makes for a perfect visit.
In total, there are 1600 artworks here though only 200 tend to be on display at any one time. One room contains Gothic art from the 14th and 15th centuries and another holds just Renaissance art. The Treasure Room is filled with valuable items mainly made by goldsmiths and fine jewelers.
The address is Plaza de la Reina and entry to both the Cathedral and the museum costs four euros. Hours are Monday to Saturday 10.00 to 17.30.
What are the best free museums in Valencia?
If you're traveling on a budget, you'll be glad to find that there are lots of cheap or free things to do in Valencia. That includes some impressive museums. The Museum of Fine Arts is free for anyone to visit, and so is the unusual Fallas Museum. The Natural Science Museum is also free on weekends and holidays after 3 PM.
Which are the best museums in downtown Valencia?
Downtown Valencia is home to some of the best of the city's museums. The City of Arts and Sciences occupies a prominent position next to Turia Park, and houses the Prine Felipe Science Museum. The Museum of Fine Arts and Valencia Cathedral are also very central.
Are there any cheap museums in Valencia?
Some of the best museums in Valencia are free, and others can be very cheap to visit. This is especially true if you're a young citizen of an EU country, a student, or retired. For example, Valencia Cathedral Museum is a very affordable four euros, and the Jose Benlliure House is only two euros.
Nearly all of these museums and galleries will find it difficult, if not impossible, to accommodate you if you are carrying large baggage items. Lugging heavy bags will also detract from your visit, even to a city as delightful as Valencia.
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