The City of Arts and Sciences, Valencia

with 6 Comments

The City of Arts and Sciences is an ensemble of six futuristic buildings in the riverbed of what was once the Turia River and today is the beautiful Turia Gardens. Designed by Santiago Calatrava and Felix Candela, the City of Arts and Sciences is an impressive example of modern architecture, offering an endless capacity for entertaining and stimulating the minds of its visitors. No wonder photographers from all over the world flock to Valencia to take their chances with the enchanted city as the site became an international landmark.


The City of Arts and Sciences is surrounded by Mediterranean blue waters and it is covered in pure white concrete and shattered tile fragments that beautifully sparkle in the sun, forming a puzzle. The complex is a ‘city within a city’ that looks as it might have been beamed down to earth from another planet. Which is almost true, if you take into consideration that images from the complex have been used in creating Atrium City from the new ‘V’ series 😉


These buildings look so out of this world in fact that all photos of the City of Arts and Sciences have a guaranteed ‘wow’ effect. But shooting the same six buildings, no matter how impressive they might be, it’s limiting. And this is precisely why it became a fashion lately for the photographers to use HDR and play with their photos further, trying to give new dimensions to the place. I don’t like HDR photography all that much, but I just love the way the City Of Arts And Sciences looks processed like this. It can never be overdone and it never gets old.Further reading: 30 things to do in Valencia

In the above picture you can see the Hemispheric, housing an IMAX cinema, planetarium and laserium (on the left) and the Opera House (on the right). The complex also includes an interactive science museum resembling the skeleton of a whale (third image), an Oceanographic park, which is the largest aquarium in Europe, with over 500 marine species, a newly built sports arena, and a promenade.
The City of Arts and Sciences - Valencia, Spain
Hemisferic at City of Arts and Sciences, Valencia
Ciutat de les Arts i les Ciències
The science museum at City of Arts and Sciences, Valencia

TIP: The new AVE high-speed train connects Madrid with Valencia in only 1h 35min. If you are visiting Madrid, a day trip to the City of Arts and Sciences in Valencia is a reality now. And if you are in Valencia, you can go sample Madrid and maybe even have lunch in the oldest restaurant in the world.

If you love Santiago Calatrava’s work as much as I do, or you know somebody who does, here’s the perfect gift – Santiago Calatrava: Complete Works.

6 Responses

  1. Mary Jane
    | Reply

    I visited Valencia with my family last summer and we had an amazing time there Beautiful atmosphere and architecture. Marvelous place!

  2. Asabi
    | Reply

    Stunning picture of the City of Arts and Sciences! It makes me wish I could visit Valencia tomorrow!

  3. Laura
    | Reply

    Ian, just yesterday I was wandering around the City of Arts and Sciences as it was doors open day at the Opera House and I kept telling to myself that Andreas Gursky would have lots of fun taking photos here 😉

  4. Ian Zorgovici
    | Reply

    The City of Arts and Sciences is an impressive piece of architecture. I visited Valencia two years ago and I still regret to this day I didn't go to see an opera in that beautiful Calatrava designed Opera House.

  5. Thristhan
    | Reply

    Simply gorgeous :). I love the way you edited this photo.

  6. Ms. Littlewing
    | Reply

    Wow very beautiful and stunning pic….I love it so much.

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