Named after the Latin word for "valour", Valencia was founded by Roman soldiers during second century BC and underwent many changes in the thousand years that followed. During the Muslim era, it was named Medina bu-Tarab, meaning 'City of Joy', but its original name was restored after the Reconquista.
With an estimated population of 800,000, it is the third largest city in Spain and its port is the fifth largest in Europe. It is home to many different cultures and Spanish is the language that is predominantly spoken. However, its inhabitants also have their own official language: Valencian. Sometimes seen as a dialect of Catalan, the language is used bilingually alongside Spanish on public signs and is spoken by around 40% of locals.
The expat community in Valencia has grown greatly in recent years with an influx of people arriving from Bolivia, Romania, Italy, Colombia and Morocco. A census in 2009 revealed that 15.1% of those living in the city were born overseas.
Valencia enjoys long and warm summers as well as cool winters. July is typically its hottest month with temperatures averaging 24.9°C (76.8°F). December is the coldest month with an average high of 16.8°C (62.2°F) and lows of 8.1°C (46.6°F).
The city's hottest day on record came in August 2010 when a heatwave brought a temperature of 43°C (109°F). The coldest day was recorded in February 1965 when temperatures plummeted to -7.2°C (19°F).
On average, expats moving to Valencia can look forward to just 44 days of rain each year, with less than 454 mm falling. Snow is extremely rare.
In order to be well prepared for your move to Valenica, you will have to tackle some red tape, particularly when it comes to getting a visa. We have summed up the Spanish visa regulations in our article on Moving to Spain, so be sure to take a look!
Once in the city, expats will find many places to live, including houses and apartments for rent or sale and hotels that accept long-term occupation.
Using the internet is often the easiest way to find a place to stay prior to one’s move to Valencia, with websites such as Valencia Flats, Valencia Homes, and Found Valencia all having comprehensive listings.
It might also be worth checking out the listings in Valencia's two main newspapers – the Levante El Mercantil Valenciano and the Las Provincias.
According to Numbeo, the average monthly rental cost for a one bedroom property is 445 EUR in the city center and around 320 EUR out of it. A three bedroom is estimated to be approximately 690 EUR and 485 EUR respectively.