Pack the bags, turn off the lights, shut the door, hail a taxi, shed a tear… and say goodbye! After five years of constant travel, we’ve become quite adept at the Departure Dance. But this time, there was a twist. Valencia has long been our adopted home, and this year we finally made it official by buying an apartment. We know we’ll be back soon, and that makes this departure a lot less melancholy.
A humble meal originally from the rice fields of Valencia, paella has become the most emblematic dish of Spanish cuisine, and is now served in restaurants across the world. But for our money, the best is still made in the Comunidad Valenciana. We visited La Matandeta, a popular restaurant near the Albufera, to learn how the perfect paella is made.
Valencia is a relatively flat city, but it’s surrounded by mountain ranges. The closest is the Sierra Calderona, an hour’s drive northwest. We spent a day hiking in the hills and ended up at the Mirador de Garbi, a natural rocky outcrop with astounding views of the Mediterranean Sea.