Paterna is a city in Valencia (province). Paterna is known primarily for being a bedroom community of Valencia, for its cave dwellings, and for its Moors and Christians celebration which culminates with the Cordà.
The area is 5 km northwest of Valencia, and has been inhabited since Neolithic times due to its advantageous location near the Turía River. The town was established as a Roman estate with villa, named Paternus (from Latin meaning 'of the father'). Later during the Moorish period the growing settlement was known for agriculture and for ceramics, which continued following the Christian reconquista. The expulsion of the Moriscos in the early 17th century, however, led to depopulation and a major economic downturn, along with the cessation of ceramics production; the city did not recover until the beginning of the 19th century.
- 1 Oficina de Turismo, Carrer Metge Ballester, 23, ☏ , fax: , email@example.com. Winter: M-F 09:00-14:00 16:30-19:00, Sa 09:00-14:00; summer: M-F 09:00-14:00 18:00-20:30, Sa 09:00-14:00.
The core of the city is easily traversed by foot.
- 1 Torre Mudèjar (Torre de Paterna / Tower of Paterna). Sa Su 11:00-14:00. This defensive tower is believed to have been built in the Moorish period sometime between the 11th and 12th centuries, as a square tower. It was remodeled during the 13th and 14th centuries, when it was converted to a circular tower, and it is this aspect which is unique among the watchtowers in the Valencia Community. The tower can be accessed via a circular external staircase, and the view from the top is worth the climb as on clear days it is possible to see as far north as Sagunto and as far south as Dénia. Free.
- 2 Parque de la Torre, Carrer Coves de la Torre. It is believed that the custom of living in cave dwellings is Moorish in origin, and was not uncommon in areas of Andalucia. In Paterna this practice has continued until the modern era, with most underground homes clustered around the Torre Mudèjar – from above ground the dwellings can be identified by the chimneys poking through the ground surface.
- 3 Espai Cultural Coves del Batà (Espacio Cultural Cuevas del Batán / Batán Caves Cultural Space), C/ Senda del Batà, s/n, ☏ . Tu-F 17:00-20:00, Sa 10:00-14:00. The cultural centre consists of a set of eight interconnected cave dwellings, which house an ethnographic exhibit, textile and blacksmith workshops, temporary exhibits, and finally a reconstruction of a furnished, traditional dwelling. Free.
- 4 Museu de Ceràmica (Museo de Cerámica / Museum of Ceramics), Plaça del Poble, s/n (in the Ajuntament/Town Hall), ☏ , firstname.lastname@example.org. Tu Th 10:00-13:30, Sa 10:00-14:00 17:00-20:00, Su 10:00-14:00. Has an extensive collection of ceramics from the Middle Ages to the modern period. Free.
- 5 Església de Sant Pere (Iglesia de San Pedro / Church of St. Peter), Plaça del Poble, 6. Built in the 14th century on the site that had been occupied by the town mosque, and remodelled in the 18th century.
- Falles (Fallas). 15-19 March. As in neighbouring Valencia, this annual celebration is dedicated to San Josep (San José / St. Joseph), and includes the burning of falla monuments as well as mascletàs (gunpowder demonstrations).
- Moros i Cristians (Moros y Cristianos / Moors and Christians). 2nd half of August. The festivities are part of an annual two-week religious festival dedicated to San Vicente Ferrer, which includes various religious activities and community activities. For visitors the most interesting activities are the nightly Moors and Christians parades, which celebrate the 13th-century Christian reconquista. Most parades begin at around 21:00 or 22:00.
- 1 La Cordà, Carrer Major (btw Carrer de Sant Antoni and Carrer Mestre Soler). 01:00 on the last Sunday of August. The grand finale of the annual August festivities, this is a fireworks and pyrotechnics extravaganza, with the shooting of about 70,000 rockets in the space of about half an hour. Visitors can watch from outside a caged in area on the main street.
- 2 Kinépolis, Avinguda de Francisco Tomàs I Valiente, s/n (in the Heron City Paterna shopping centre), ☏ . A modern cineplex which shows the latest blockbusters, with both dubbed and original language versions (VOS: versión original subtitulada).
- 1 Mercadillo (street market), Plaça del Poble (by the Museum of Ceramics). Tu morning. A weekly street market for food and odds and ends.
- 1 Restaurante la Fuente, C/ Villa de Madrid, s/n (Polígono Industrial Fuente del Jarro), ☏ . M-F 07:00-18:00 (cafeteria), 12:30-16:00 (kitchen). The large establishment serves Valencian cuisine and other Spanish specialties, with a good wine selection.
- 1 Posadas De España Paterna, Avinguda Leonardo da Vinci, s/n (near the Parque Tecnológico de Valencia), ☏ , fax: , email@example.com. Check-in: 14:00-24:00, check-out: 06:00-12:00. Minimalist and comfortable, with non-smoking rooms, onsite restaurant, and free Wi-Fi. Free public parking is directly nearby, with an electric car charger. From €45, breakfast €7.