January 11th, 2013
What did you get for Christmas? Was it just what you wanted? Not another silly sweater, surely? More smelly scent – not your usual brand – oh dear. When you are finished taking everything back, or down to the charity shop, then treat yourself with the left over lolly to something you really like. After Christmas, you may feel in need of therapy. If the New Year budget stretches to a break away, then how about a spot of retail therapy in Valencia?
Shopping on a different scale, with outlets and boutiques a million miles from your high street chains – and sunshine to boot? Flex that credit card for some therapy of the retail kind – in Valencia.
Ready to book?
Armed with your Christmas money – the best gift! – and your flexible friend, scour the internet for a cheap flight – there are lots to choose from at this time of year. Avoid the high season crowds and hop on a flight to the west coast of Spain, where the mild winter and un-crowded streets are just starting their post Reyes sales – 7o percent off is not unusual – no queues, no rain, no umbrella needed. Pack your largest sunglasses for those Winter sun rays, some comfortable clothes and flat shoes, and hit the shops!
A budget rate flat in Valencia to hold all those carrier bags? No problem, Spain Holiday have a range of budget accommodation all over Spain and it’s accessible by clicking here.
Where to go
Start by waking up to a beautiful Spanish sunrise – they’re simply the best in the clear Winter months – and have breakfast at one of the little café bars close to your Valencia city centre apartment.
Order up a freshly squeezed Orange juice – probably fresh from the tree 24 hours before – and sit back and contemplate the day ahead. After a strong coffee – how do you like yours? – and a Tostada smeared with fresh tomato and Olive Oil, or cured Jamón and Manchego cheese – and, hey presto, you’re ready to go.
Forget traffic, rain, umbrellas and pushy crowds, you’re in Spain! Take a tram to the centre of town, or walk if you have thoughtfully based yourself centrally, and discover the delights of shopping in Valencia.
Plan the route
Like most Spanish cities, Valencia is arranged out in a thoughtful manner, explore the streets at your leisure. If you would rather plan it out then take the Metro Colón and walk the streets of Calle Colón and Calle Paz.
Here you will find the most amazing array of shops, from individual designer boutiques to the Spanish high street classics. Zara may be familiar, did you see the news report last week on how well it is doing? Apparently, they change the entire stock on a fortnightly basis, it’s always fresh and up to speed with the catwalk collections – you can be the first at home with the latest European chic designs…!
The Golden Mile
The Golden Mile…Not just for Marbella you know!
The Golden Mile in Valencia is known as the area around the Palacio del Marqués de dos Aguas- and is reminiscent of the Champs Élysées in Paris, that exclusive avenue of designer shops. The platinum card may need a little flexing here, but even if you just plan to window shop – it’s worth it! The jewellers in particular will have you stop and drool – just stand back from the window! Ah, what the heck, if that tiara fits, then buy it!
If you like pedestrianised streets on which to stroll and shop, then head for Calle Don Juan de Austria, which handily has a great mixture of independent boutiques, familiar high street names and the ubiquitous department store to be found all over Spain, El Corte Ingles. Floors of just about everything you could ask for, you can happily get lost in here and never be seen again!
Don forget the market! Not just for your food requirements in the self catering accommodation in Valencia that you chose to stay in, but also for souvenir shopping. Paella pans of all sizes, from ornamental to gigantic are for sale here, and make great presents, pick up your pre packed Jamón or fancy bottles of Olive oil and Sherry to take home with you.
The famous indoor market should also be on your list of attractions to see in Valencia, the 1,000 plus stalls and architecture of the building are a sight to see even if you don’t see anything you want to buy – which is quite unlikely! Find it at Plaza de Mercado opposite the La Lonja de la Seda – the Silk Exchange.
There’s also a Sunday morning market over on Plaza Redonda – a good stop off for the traditional gifts of Abanicos- Spanish hand fans – and locally produced cheaper ceramic gifts, there’s also a good selection of intricate leather-work, bags and purses hand-crafted from soft leather in a variety of designs. Good value cheaper clothes too – if you really do want a t-shirt with a Bull motif – then this is the place to purchase it!
After the shopping spree
All in all, it’s a nice way to spend your Sunday morning – browsing and strolling - before you head off and decide on a long lunch in one of the many restaurants – Paella anyone?!
Afterwards, working off the calories in order to fit into your new purchases, you’ll be ready for a stroll on one of the many beaches around the city, read an article by Guy here on some of the best and unspoilt beaches of Valencia.
Whether your budget is Zara or Carolina Herrera, Boss or Bugalú you’ll find exactly what you really wanted for Christmas on the shopping streets of Valencia – the perfect therapy! Happy days!