Getting around Valencia is easy – the traffic is busy but manageable, roads and bike paths are in good condition, and there are efficient and affordable public transport options, including a bus and rail system.
Public transport in Valencia
Public transport fares depend on the distance travelled: Zone A is within the city centre whereas Zones B, C and D are for longer distances. Passengers can buy a single ticket, though getting a 10-journey ticket is a better deal.
Light railway, metro and tram services are part of the Metrovalencia transport network, and frequent users of this system can get the TuiN smart card.
The metro, or underground, connects the city pretty well, though routes are more limited in the south of the city. The metro is the fastest and easiest way to the airport (it takes approximately 30 minutes from the city centre). Valencia’s metro system is much smaller than Madrid and Barcelona's underground schemes, but is still one of the fastest and most reliable ways to get around.
Valencia's tram system is integrated with the metro and reaches areas in the north of the city, including the beach. Expats should note that services are limited late at night, but buses and taxis are good alternatives.
The bus is another efficient way of moving around the city. The bus service operates at night, but it’s recommended to check the timetable beforehand as they only run every one or two hours. A great option for short trips out of the city is the Metrobus – these yellow buses connect the city with nearby villages and the fares are relatively cheap.
While understanding the route maps may be something of a challenge for new arrivals, it's easy to find a bus stop and follow the route using Google Maps.
Buses are known to be less reliable than the underground – don't be surprised if a bus route is diverted due to a demonstration, procession or race without being notified of the details of the detour.
Taxis in Valencia
Taxis are a useful way of getting around in Valencia, especially after 11pm when public transport options are limited. Note that night and weekend fares can cost significantly more.
Expats can hail a taxi from an app or over the phone. Those hoping to travel outside of Valencia by car can find carpooling options using apps and websites such as BlaBlaCar.
Driving in Valencia
Expats can get by without a car in Valencia, but those who intend to buy or rent one should know that parking can be a nightmare here. While it’s possible to find free parking, this may prove challenging in the city centre and other busy areas. Drivers should be aware that double parking is common in Valencia and many drivers leave almost no distance between parked cars. It's not advised to follow this example as the parking fine and towing costs will be high.
There are a few public car parks throughout the city, and expats can easily continue their commute using public transport.
Ultimately, though, Valencia is ideal for scooters – they are fast, cheap and can be parked almost anywhere.
Walking and cycling in Valencia
The weather is sunny and warm for most of the year, so walking is a good option – and even at night time, it’s generally safe to walk in Valencia.
Another great option is to cycle as the city is well connected by bike paths. The weather, size and flat landscape of Valencia make it the perfect city for bike riding. It's a good idea to invest in a good bike lock, as bicycle theft is fairly common.
The city also has a public bike scheme known as Valenbisi, but expats should note that bike stations have limited availability.
Boat travel in Valencia
Valencia is classified as a port city, making ferry travel an adventurous alternative to flying. There are frequent ferry routes between Valencia and the Balearic Islands, including Menorca, Mallorca and Ibiza. Schedules are subject to change and ticket prices can be quite hefty.