YEMEN, 1230 BC-1962 AD
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Valencia stands on the banks of the Turia River , located on the eastern coast of the Iberian Peninsula and the western part of the Mediterranean Sea , fronting the Gulf of Valencia. At its founding by the Romans, it stood on a river island in the Turia, 6.
The City Council bought the lake from the Crown of Spain for 1,, pesetas in ,  and today it forms the main portion of the Parc Natural de l'Albufera Albufera Nature Reserve , with a surface area of 21, hectares 52, acres. In , because of its cultural, historical, and ecological value, the Generalitat Valenciana declared it a natural park.
Valencia has a subtropical Mediterranean climate Köppen Csa  with short, very mild winters and long, hot and dry summers. Its average annual temperature is Generally, similar temperatures to those experienced in the northern part of Europe in summer last about 8 months, from April to November.
Valencia has one of the mildest winters in Europe, owing to its southern location on the Mediterranean Sea and the Foehn phenomenon. The January average is comparable to temperatures expected for May and September in the major cities of northern Europe. Sunshine duration hours are 2, per year, from average nearly 5 hours of sunshine duration a day in December to average above 10 hours of sunshine duration a day in July.
Valencia enjoyed strong economic growth before the economic crisis of , much of it spurred by tourism and the construction industry , [ citation needed ] with concurrent development and expansion of telecommunications and transport. However, the city still maintains an important industrial base, with 8. Growth has recently improved in the manufacturing sector, mainly automobile assembly; The large factory of Ford Motor Company lies in a suburb of the city, Almussafes .
Agricultural activities are still carried on in the municipality, even though of relatively minor importance with only 1. Since the onset of the Great Recession , Valencia had experienced a growing unemployment rate, increased government debt, etc.
Severe spending cuts had been introduced by the city government. In , Valencia was designated "the 29th fastest-improving European city". Other exports include oranges, furniture, ceramic tiles, fans, textiles and iron products. Valencia's manufacturing sector focuses on metallurgy, chemicals, textiles, shipbuilding and brewing.
Small and medium-sized industries are an important part of the local economy, and before the current crisis unemployment was lower than the Spanish average. Valencia's port underwent radical changes to accommodate the 32nd America's Cup in It was divided into two parts—one was unchanged while the other section was modified for the America's Cup festivities.
The two sections remain divided by a wall that projects far into the water to maintain clean water for the America's Cup side. Public transport is provided by the Ferrocarrils de la Generalitat Valenciana FGV , which operates the Metrovalencia and other rail and bus services.
The City of Valencia also makes available a bicycle sharing system named Valenbisi to both visitors and residents. As of 13 October , the system has bikes distributed over stations all throughout the city. The average amount of time people spend commuting with public transit in Valencia, for example to and from work, on a weekday is 44 min.
The average distance people usually ride in a single trip with public transit is 5. Starting in the mids, Valencia, formerly an industrial centre, saw rapid development that expanded its cultural and tourism possibilities, and transformed it into a newly vibrant city. Many local landmarks were restored, including the ancient Towers of the medieval city Serrans Towers and Quart Towers , and the Saint Miquel dels Reis monastery es: Monasterio de San Miguel de los Reyes , which now holds a conservation library.
Whole sections of the old city, for example the Carmen Quarter, have been extensively renovated. In addition to these Valencia has hosted world-class events that helped shape the city's reputation and put it in the international spotlight, e.
The America's Cup yachting races were held at Valencia in June and July and attracted huge crowds. The Louis Vuitton stage drew 1,, visitors and the America's Cup match drew , visitors to the event. Education system in Valencia is divided into four levels, each of which has several stages: At this stage, students focus on particular subjects and prepare to enter a university;. Only two levels of education are compulsory: Upon passing exams in the next stage, students obtain the Bachiller certificate an alternative to the International Baccalaureate , which allows them to enroll in any Spanish university.
All schools are either public free or private the latter may also be partly funded by the state. The academic year starts the first week of September and ends in late June. Classes are usually held Monday through Friday for 7—8 hours a day, but the schedule depends on the particular school's programme and the age of the student. Studying Spanish is compulsory at all schools, including the international schools, and English is typically taught as a foreign language.
The third largest city in Spain and the 24th most populous municipality in the European Union , Valencia has a population of ,  within its administrative limits on a land area of The urban area of Valencia extending beyond the administrative city limits has a population of between 1,,  and 1,, This growth in the foreign born population, which rose from 1. There are also a number of well-preserved traditional Catholic festivities throughout the year. Holy Week celebrations in Valencia are considered some of the most colourful in Spain.
Valencia was once the site of the Formula One European Grand Prix , first hosting the event on 24 August , but was dropped at the beginning of the Grand Prix season, though still holds the annual Moto GP race at the Circuit Ricardo Tormo , usually that last race of the season in November. It was listed as one of the four leading Spanish universities in the Shanghai Academic Ranking of World Universities.
Valencia is a bilingual city: Valencian and Spanish are the two official languages. Spanish is official in all of Spain, whereas Valencian is official in the Valencian Community.
Despite distinct dialectal traits and political tension between Catalonia and Valencia, Catalan and Valencian are mutually intelligible and considered two varieties of the same language by the EU.
Valencian has been historically de-emphasised in favour of Spanish. This situation also applies in the city of Alicante, population ,, the southern most section of Alicante province with , inhabitants and the traditionally Spanish-speaking population in the western regions of the Valencian Community.
Whereas the language has remained active in the rural, coastal and metropolitan areas which have a population of 3. After the Castille-Aragon unification , a Spanish-speaking elite established itself in the city. The upper classes in Valenician favored Spanish while the opposite was the case in Catalonia.
In more recent history, the establishment of Franco 's military and administrative apparatus in Valencia further excluded Valencian from public life.
Valencian recovered its official status, prestige and use in education after the transition to democracy in However, due to industrialisation in recent decades, Valencia has attracted immigration from other regions in Spain, and hence there is also a demographic factor for its declining social use.
Due to a combination of these reasons, Valencia has become the bastion of anti-Catalan blaverism , which celebrates Valencian as merely folkloric, but rejects the existing standard which was adapted from Catalan orthography. Spanish is currently the predominant language in the city proper . Due to the education system, most Valencians know Spanish and Valencian, and either can be used in the city. Valencia is therefore the second biggest Catalan-speaking city after Barcelona.
Institutional buildings and streets are named in Valencian. The city is also home to many pro-Valencian political and civil organisations.
Furthermore, education entirely in Valencian is offered in more than 70 state-owned schools in the city, as well as by the University of Valencia across all disciplines. Valencia is famous for its gastronomic culture. Valencia was also the birthplace of the cold xufa beverage known as orxata , popular in many parts of the world, including the Americas.
The Falles Fallas in Spanish is an enduring tradition in Valencia and other towns in the Valencian Community ,  where it has become an important tourist attraction. The festival began in the 18th century,  and came to be celebrated on the night of the feast day of Saint Joseph , the patron saint of carpenters, with the burning of waste planks of wood from their workshops, as well as worn-out wooden objects brought by people in the neighborhood.
This tradition continued to evolve, and eventually the parots were dressed with clothing to look like people—these were the first ninots , with features identifiable as being those of a well-known person from the neighborhood often added as well. In the city inaugurated the awarding of prizes for the best Falles monuments,  and neighborhood groups still vie with each other to make the most impressive and outrageous creations.
Valencia is one of the oldest cities in Spain, founded in the Roman period, c. A few centuries later, with the power vacuum left by the demise of the Roman imperial administration, the Catholic Church assumed the reins of power in the city, coinciding with the first waves of the invading Germanic peoples Suevi , Vandals and Alans , and later the Visigoths.
The city surrendered to the invading Moors Berbers and Arabs about AD,  and the cathedral of Saint Vincent was turned into a mosque. The Castilian nobleman Rodrigo Diaz de Vivar, known as El Cid , in command of a combined Christian and Moorish army, besieged the city beginning in After the siege ended in May , he ruled the city and its surrounding territory as his own fiefdom for five years from 15 June to July The city remained in the hands of Christian troops until , when the Almoravids retook the city and restored the Muslim religion.
The Almoravid Masdali took possession on 5 May , then the Almohads , seized control of it in Many Jews lived in Valencia during early Muslim rule, including the accomplished Jewish poet Solomon ibn Gabirol , who spent his last years in the city. When the city fell to James I of Aragon , the Jewish population of the city constituted about 7 percent of the population.
In ,  King James I of Aragon , with an army composed of Aragonese , Catalans , Navarrese and crusaders from the Order of Calatrava , laid siege to Valencia and on 28 September obtained a surrender. The city endured serious troubles in the midth century, including the decimation of the population by the Black Death of and subsequent years of epidemics — as well as a series of wars and riots that followed.
In , the Jewish quarter was destroyed. The 15th century was a time of economic expansion, known as the Valencian Golden Age, in which culture and the arts flourished. Concurrent population growth made Valencia the most populous city in the Crown of Aragon. The cost of living in Spain. Dating and friendship in Spain.
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