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What once was a down-and-out and somewhat seedy district to the south of the center, has today turned its fortunes around. Welcome to Ruzafa: one of Valencia’s hippest barrios and one of the places to visit on a city break.
Fast becoming popular with hipsters, artists and hippies, Ruzafa has a unique vibe to the rest of the city and offers tourists something different to discover. Home to some of Valencia’s best tapas joints, bars and restaurants, it’s also filled with independent art galleries and vintage boutiques.
Ruzafa is also a great place to visit during the city’s annual Las Fallas festival, held each March, where giant papier-mâché sculptures are created and placed around the city before being burnt on the final day. Ruzafa celebrates during Las Fallas with its own mini-festival, complete with over-the-top decorations and lights.
This chic Portuguese-style seafood bar is a great addition to the Ruzafa food scene, offering traditional old Portuguese recipes, as well as plenty of sardine dishes.
La Conservera, Literato Azorín, 18, Valencia, Spain, +34 963 224 442
Created by famous chef Ricard Camarena, Canella Bistro has the feeling of a New York bistro and serves dishes such as pastrami sandwiches, Japanese nigiri and pizzas. The restaurant has also recently opened a new bar for drinks and cocktails.
Canalla Bistro, Carrer del Mestre Josep Serrano, 5, Valencia, Spain, +34 963 740 509
This deli-cum-coffee shop is both quirky and funky with fun décor. It specializes in brunches, which although not traditionally Spanish are fast becoming a new trend in Spain and are growing in popularity.
Circa Almacén, Calle Cuba, 30, Valencia, Spain, +34 960 044 765
A pintxos (Basque-style tapas on small pieces of bread) and tapas bar, El Deslunao offers a wide range of veggie and vegan options and also holds events such as live music performances and cinema evenings.
El Deslunao, Plaza Barón de Cortés, 20, Valencia, Spain, +34 696 264 267
This is the heart of the Ruzafa neighborhood and a place that helped to start the current hip trend. Ubik is a café, bookshop, gallery, restaurant, and music space all rolled into one, and also holds creative workshops too.
Ubik Café, Carrer del Literat Azorín, 13,Valencia, Spain, +34 963 741 255
Olhöps Craft Beer House
Craft beer is a growing trend in Spain, with many small breweries opening up in the major cities, and if anything signals that an area is going up in the world, then it’s a craft beer shop. Olhöps Craft Beer House also holds events such as beer tastings and brewing demonstrations.
Olhöps Craft Beer House, Carrer de Sueca, 21, Valencia, Spain, +34 650 135 022
La Catrina Café y Rock
Another Ruzafa café, this place doubles up as a live rock music club at night.
La Catrina Café y Rock, Carrer de Cadis, 54, Valencia, Spain, +34 692 644 737
Russafa Youth Hostel
Budget travellers and backpackers should choose the Russafa Youth Hostel, providing bright, colorful rooms, free breakfast and wi-fi. There are also private rooms for those who don’t want to sleep in the dorms.
Russafa Youth Hostel, Carrer del Pare Perera, 5, Valencia, Spain, +34 963 313 140
Petit Palace Germanias
Those looking for something a little more upmarket should book themselves into the Petit Palace Germanias right in the heart of Ruzafa, and within easy reach of the city’s Joaquin Sorolla railway station. It offers contemporary rooms and high tech services.
Petit Palace Germanias, Carrer de Sueca, 14, Valencia, Spain, +34 963 513 638