It is easy to get around Valencia – the traffic is busy but manageable, roads and bike paths are in good condition and there are reliable and affordable public transport options such as the bus and the rail system.
Additionally, thanks to sunny, warm weather, and the flat landscape and its infrastructure, cycling and walking are both viable options for getting around Valencia.
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 ten-journey ticket is a better deal.
Light railway, metro and tram services are combined in 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 metropolitan underground schemes, but it's 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. However, expats should note that services are limited late at night, and buses and taxis are good alternatives.
The bus is another way of moving around the city. There are also some buses operating at night, but it´s better to check the timetable beforehand as they only run once 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 route maps may be a bit of a challenge for some 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 realising where the everyday bus stop has moved.
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 fees are applicable, and rides outside of peak weekday hours can cost significantly more.
Expats can hail a taxi from an app or phone for one. Expats hoping to travel outside of Valencia by car can find carpooling options using apps and websites such as BlaBlaCar.
Driving in Valencia
Expats can easily live in Valencia without a car, but if deciding to buy or rent one, there are some things to be prepared for, particularly in terms of parking. It is possible to find free parking, although in the city centre and other busy areas this may be less easy. There are also public car parks throughout and around the city, and expats can easily continue their commute using public transport.
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; the parking fine and the costs for a tow truck will be high. Also, always check the parking signs around and whether there is a yellow line.
Valencia is ideal for riding a scooter – 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 ride a bicycle – the city is well connected by bike paths. The weather, the size and the flat landscape makes Valencia a perfect city for riding a bike. It's a good idea to invest in a good bike lock, as bicycle theft is a problem.
The city also has a public bike scheme known as Valenbisi. Cycling is a great and healthy way to get around, but many Valenbisi users report that the bicycles are heavy and sometimes it's difficult to park them – parking spots at the bike stations are limited and the availability can vary.
Boat travel in Valencia
Thanks to its coastal geography, Valencia has a status as a port city, and ferry travel is on the cards in Valencia. There are frequent ferry routes between Valencia and the Balearic Islands, including Menorca, Mallorca and Ibiza. While sea travel can be a viable alternative to flying, schedules are subject to change and ticket prices can be quite high.
►See Moving to Valencia for an overview of the city
►Pros and Cons of Moving to Valencia sums up the advantages and disadvantages of moving to the city
"Public transport is wonderful here. The metro is excellent and pretty affordable, and the bus system does a great job of covering those areas where the metro hasn’t arrived... I should add that Valencia has a wonderful bike-share program, Valenbisi, which is cheap and an excellent way to get around town. The City’s Turia Riverbed Park runs through the centre of town, and as such is almost a kind of car-free “bike highway” for cyclists." Read more on Valencia's transport options in our interview with Zach Frohlich.
"Living in the historical center of Valencia means you just walk to everything. Anything we would like to see or do in the city, from shopping to eating out, going to art galleries, to the yoga school and the gym, is at a five- to 10-minute walk." For more on life in Valencia, read this interview with Dany and Thijs.
Are you an expat living in Valencia?
Expat Arrivals is looking for locals to contribute to this guide, and answer forum questions from others planning their move to Valencia. Please contact us if you'd like to contribute.
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