Only 15 kilometres from the city of Valencia, you will find an incredible place, a large lake that is considered the largest in the Iberian Peninsula. It is a unique natural environment, which offers lots of activities to do, as well as a landscape to admire and enjoy in all its diversity.
In a visit to the Albufera Natural Park, you will find unique wildlife and an orchard that unite to offer you the essence of Valencian gastronomy. Both boat trips and restaurants are the main attractions of this magnificent lake that many call “The little sea of Valencia”.
A trip to the Albufera is a must for tourists in this area and for visitors who admire Valencia. At this lake, the essence of Valencians is found, all their history, tradition, and rice dishes are concentrated in this area, which gives life to the heart of Valencia.
The Albufera and gastronomy
The rice fields found in the Albufera are the base of Valencian gastronomy. The famous paella is an example of this, but it’s not the only rice dish that is enjoyed in this area. There are thousands of unique dishes that are based on rice: black rice, a banda rice, red rice, rice with vegetables…there are innumerable rice dishes that the Albufera lets us enjoy.
You can also find products that are typical of the Valencian orchard with which to accompany your rice or with which to make incredible dishes. Another star of the gastronomy of the Albufera area is fish, especially sea bass.
As well as rice dishes, one of the stars in the restaurants in the Albufera is all i pebre, which has as its main ingredient the lake’s native eel. L’espardenyà is also a common dish in this area. Its ingredients are meat, fish, tomato and egg.
Both if you live in or travel to Valencia, it’s absolutely essential to make a visit to the Albufera and you can eat in some of its restaurants. You won’t be short of places to eat exquisite dishes accompanied by Valencian wine or beer.
The main places to eat in the Albufera can be found in El Palmar. It is a district of Valencia with a fishing tradition and it is located on the shores of the lake in Albufera. It’s for this reason that the gastronomy in this area is enjoyed precisely in this town, renowned today for its many good restaurants.
As a park, you can’t miss the sports and outdoor activities that can be enjoyed in the area. The star of the things to do in the Albufera is a traditional boat trip. There are outings where you can go on a tour of the lake, which gives an incredible feeling when navigating the reed beds. We recommend that you do this at sunset to admire the natural scenery of these lands, and if you are taken out to open water, even better.
But boating is not the only thing that you can do. As well as walking in the area, you can also take part in organised activities like taking a bike ride around the park. It’s a real treat for the senses which will give you a direct connection to nature, among the rice fields, the typical birds in the area, and the Valencian breeze.
The birds of the lake
One of the greatest riches of the Albufera is the wildlife that is found in this place. Thousands of species, both vertebrate and invertebrate, live in this habitat. You can find crustaceans to sea bass or eels, which are most typical in the waters here and in the gastronomy. Among the mammals is the rat of the Albufera, the dormouse, or the hare. But, if there is anything that stands out about this great lake, it’s the great variety of birds here. Thousands of species of seagulls and ducks live and reproduce in this environment, with more than 350 species of birds registered.
The rice field is an important part of this coexistence of birds, as it is essential for sustaining the vegetation and invertebrate wildlife, especially the birds. In the rice field, the birds can find a complementary environment for food during winter and for their migratory journeys.
When talking about the Albufera, it is mandatory to talk about Devesa. It is the beach that is the coastline of the Albufera. When visiting a beach, it’s hard to believe that it can be found in such a privileged environment. Its main feature is the sand dunes, but Devesa also enjoys the natural park setting, which is why all kinds of birds can be found here and it is surrounded by pine forests.
Nature and clean air merge at this beach, which is located only a few kilometres from the city, and it benefits both from the environment of the Mediterranean Sea and the Albufera Natural Park, and all of its flora and fauna.
How to get to the Albufera
Fortunately, getting to the Albufera from Valencia is really easy. Only a few kilometres from this park is the Saler motorway, an entrance to Valencia where the famous City of Arts and Sciences is located. By car, it is only 15 minutes from Valencia on this motorway.
And, if you are not travelling by car, don’t worry because there are other ways of getting to this unique place from the city of Valencia. You can take a bus that will bring you directly to the Albufera and you can also take the Tourist Bus tour, a fun way of getting to know the city of Valencia and its most attractive areas, one of which is the Albufera Natural Park.
Karen Real estate consultants and real estate consultants in Valencia