The Cathedral of Valencia found during 13th Century was built on the site of old Roman Temple of Diana that was destroyed by the Moors in order to build a mosque. This magnificent church which is also famous as Saint Mary’s Cathedral is located close to the two iconic squares of Valencia: Plaza del Virgin and Plaza del la Reina.
Although Gothic architecture is the main style of the Cathedral exteriors, varied styles like Romanesque, Baroque, Renaissance and Neo-Classical elements are found in different parts of the cathedral as the construction was carried on for several centuries.
The cathedral contains numerous religious treasures and works of art by some of the famous artists of 15th century. There are two paintings by Goya, which is said to be first of his work displaying the dark world. A mummified arm of Saint Vincente Martyr (patron Saint of Valencia) is also preserved in the Chapel in Resurrection.
The main highlight of the cathedral is the Santo Caliz Chapel where you will find the Holy Chalice. Some of the history researchers have claimed that this is the authentic Holy Grail used by Jesus in the Last Supper. The chapel is an old stone-walled structure located next to cathedral museum with the chalice placed in the center on an alabaster altarpiece. Not dwelling on the fact that if the legends are true or not, but the uncanny feeling we experienced while standing in the chapel and looking at one of the items of great religious and historic importance was a moment to be treasured.
The cathedral also has an octagonal bell tower “El Micalet” (or the “Miguelete”), another historic landmark of Valencia. The tower has 207 spiral steps that lead to an open terrace with the large bell placed in the centre and uninterrupted view of the historic city.
The entry to the cathedral costs 4 Euros and it also includes audio guide that gives detailed information on every part of the cathedral. The bell tower entry fees is about 2 Euros.
Also visit the Real Basilica de la Virgen de los Desamparados located right next to the cathedral of Valencia at Plaza de la Virgin. Considered as one of the first Baroque buildings in Spain has a distinct style with a large statue of Virgin of the Forsaken (Patron Virgin of Valencia).