The Cathedral of Valencia, consecrated in 1238, is also known as the Cathedral of the Holy Chalice since it is venerated inside, from the 1st century and which has been in Valencia since 1436.
One of the most famous elements of the Cathedral is the Miguelete, Micalet in Valencian, its bell tower, one of the symbols of the city and with which Valencians are most proud.
The Cathedral of Valencia is one of the oldest of the Spanish Gothic and its visit is essential in this city.
History of the Cathedral of Valencia
Valencia Cathedral was built between the 13th and 15th centuries.
Due to the time that its construction lasted, there are also elements of other styles such as Romanesque or Baroque.
The cathedral is consecrated to the Assumption of the Virgin Mary, at the request of Jaime I.
Valencia Cathedral was built in the same place where a mosque from the Muslim era was located, which in turn was built on a Visigothic church from the 5th century.
Although the construction was delayed for centuries afterwards, it was consecrated very quickly after the conquest of the city to be able to make a difference with Islam and demonstrate that Valencia was already a Christian city.
What to see outside the Cathedral of Valencia
The Cathedral of Valencia does not have an exterior that is too rich in ornamentation, except for the doors, probably due to the rush to build it.
As we have said before, what stands out most from its exterior is the Miguelete, the bell tower, whose construction began at the end of the 13th century and which today is one of the symbols of the city.
Of Gothic style, it receives that name since it is the name by which its great bell that strikes the hours is known and because it was blessed on Saint Michael’s day in the year 1418.
It is currently attached to the cathedral by various extensions, but originally it was an independent building.
On the outside we also find three doors, one Romanesque and the other two Gothic.
The Romanesque, the Puerta de l’Almoina, is a completely different element from the rest since the cathedral is fundamentally Gothic. It is the oldest of seo.
But the most striking is the Puerta de los Apóstoles, the Gothic, and in it we can find the sculptures of the 12 apostles as well as other saints and Saint Mary, located in the tympanum of the door.
The main door, located next to the Miguelete, is the Puerta de los Hierros in which the iron grille that surrounds it stands out. It is the most modern of all and is reminiscent of a concave altarpiece.
What to see inside the Cathedral of Valencia
From the interior of this beautiful cathedral we can highlight the Chapel of the Holy Chalice, from the mid-14th century, the old Chapter House.
By the way, do not miss the tour of the churches of Valencia and the Holy Grail. Very surprising.
It has a square floor plan and its vault amazes where the 12 apostles and the Assumption of the Virgin are represented. But what really amazes is the Holy Chalice donated by King Alfonso the Magnanimous in 1437.
This Chalice, dating from the 1st century, has traveled throughout history from Rome to Valencia passing through Huesca, Jaca and Zaragoza.
Of the rest of the interior of the Cathedral of Valencia, we must highlight the High Altar and its impressive vault with five windows under which is the High Altarpiece made up of 6 tables as a cupboard and which are painted on both sides.
You also have to admire the dome and its stained glass windows, the ambulatory and its 8 Gothic chapels, as well as the Chapel of the Resurrection, being one of the oldest places in the cathedral, and the Chapel of San Francisco de Borja where we can see two fantastic Goya paintings.
The Court of the Waters
Every Thursday at 12 in the morning we can see in front of the Puerta de los Apóstoles the Tribunal de las Aguas, a court that resolves conflicts between farmers in Valencia over irrigation water and that has been held in Valencian since the time of the Romans.
In 2009, the Tribunal de las Aguas was declared an Intangible Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO.
You can find more information on the official page of the Cathedral of Valencia.