THE “Guardian” newspaper back in the UK has named Valencia’s Cabanyal district as one of the ten coolest neighbourhoods in Europe. The travel writers were looking for less touristy parts of places that have a high number of visitors and highlighted the authenticity, cosmopolitan atmosphere and original architecture in the old seaside barrio. They also said that “the new shops and bars that are appearing tend to respect and adapt to existing architecture rather than replace it”. It is also easily accessible by the underground and easy to get around by on a bike.
The Cabanyal is in Valencia’s maritime district and was traditionally the home of fishermen and then later dwellings for less well-off people. It was seen by many as almost a slum district and was threatened with total rebuilding, but over recent years many younger well-off locals have moved there, attracted by the relatively cheap housing and “shabby-chic” atmosphere. In turn this has brought an influx of cool tapas and wine bars, still sitting comfortably alongside some of the older bars and tavernas.