Moving to Valencia


My husband and I are wanting to move to Valencia in the near future. We have two kids, my daughter aged 4 and my son aged 2. We have our own business here in Scotland and would be looking to open a business in Valencia City. I will be travelling over next month for a short stay to look at all the different areas for renting a house/appartment and also commercial properties. Just looking for any help, tips or advice on moving to Valencia. I am learning Spanish at the moment and I hope to pick it up farly quick. I would prefer to live quite close to the beach but not too far from the city centre as this is where I would like our business to be. Any advice on areas to live would be great. I will also be looking for a English speaking school for my little girl who will be 5 in August. Any recommendations of schools would be greatfully appreciated. Also wondering who or where I would find more information on Tattoo Licencing,Tattoo Laws and Enviromental Health on opening a Tattoo studio in Valencia. As I am unable to find anything on the internet. Wasn't sure if I would need to contact the local council or townhall to find out more info.

Like I say, any help, tips or advice would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks all!!

Hi Linzi0386 and welcome to!

Hope that you'll soon be enlightened.;)


I can't help you on the tattoo questions, but I have a couple of suggestions on neighborhoods and schools. First schools. I'm an American, so in my expat communities people talk about the American School (out of town, but provides busing: It is very good, with a long positive history, and though American-centered it also caters to British students and education system. A friend of mine has kids who go to Cambridge House (also out of town: It is British-education-centred (note my spelling change!), and they love it. Finally, there is the British School of Valencia (central location:, which has been around for a while and has a + reputation. I wouldn't be doing justice to my personal politics if I didn't also encourage you to consider having your kids go to the regular public schools. I've known visiting Americans and Brits who did this, and whose kids were quick to adjust to the language. And it was a great way to integrate into the local community. But it is also possibly extra work for the parents and takes some getting used to so far as understanding the differences are concerned.

On the question of where to live, I'd like to strongly encourage you to rethink the idea of living near the city beach. That area (Malvarosa beach, Cabanyal neighborhood) is pretty rundown and "humble". Depending on what you're looking for, the most vibrant neighborhood to live in is Russafa. Benimaclet is less flashy, but also a nice multicultural area. The area next to the U. of Valencia, off Blasco Ibáñez, is nicer (and more expensive), with good public schools and well connected to the city center. If you have a car, then you can pick beach areas and towns outside of Valencia (e.g. Rocafort) which are much nicer to live in than the city beach area, but will require you commute and drive more. If you can forgive my shameless self-promotion, here you can read more about Valencia's most famous neighborhoods on my blog: … -part.html

Good luck with the hunt. Valencia is a wonderful city, great for raising kids! (E.g. If you have time to read around a bit on my blog, you'll discover the Gulliver playground in the Riverbed park... one of many great features for kids in the city.)

Thank you for the post and the blogspot Hemingway! I will be sure to check it out. We are also relocating. Crazy with all this economic uncertainly! I am blessed to be employed and my husbands company will be the ones relocating us.

Would you feel comfortable trying to share the mood in Valencia right now, I know many young people are out of work and many adults as well.Are many businesses closed?  I do not think many things could alter the spirit of the Spanish people. Can you offer insight to the current conditions of the people and businesses in Valencia?


Hmm, on the mood in Valencia, this is a tough question to answer, given that my answer might unintentionally say more about my personal economic situation or world view than some actual broader overview of the city. But I'll take a stab at it.

My impression is that all the economic crisis doom and gloom talk has been 'much ado about nothing' with a couple of very big caveats. First, if you are in the construction industry, or if you are under 30 years old, then you are most definitely feeling the economic crisis, probably as bad and dire as one hears about on the news. (Statistically, these are the groups that are actually out of work in Spain because of it.) But bear in mind that most under-30-year-olds in Spain tend to live with their parents, so while they are disheartened, they are not out on the street, so to speak. Second, where everyone is waiting to see about are these recent government budget cuts. A large sector of Spain's workforce is employed by the government. The government is cutting budgets. Ergo, it is possible that a lot of government employees, or people seeking government employment, might end up unemployed in the near future. This second anxiety is probably having the greater general impact on the public mood, of the two.

Still, can I tell this when I go out on the street? No. People are still shopping, having a drink at the bars with friends/coworkers, and seem to be able to smile and have good times. For example, it is now communion season for Catholic families. So far as I can tell, nobody has decided to cut the budget for their kid's expensive communion dress/suit, or forego the family meal before or afterwards. I think for most people, particularly professionals, the crisis has meant underemployment more than unemployment. Most everyone I know (over 30, college educated), has had no trouble getting work... It's just not the kind of glorious work they might have gotten five years ago.

I don't know how much this impression is more or less true for Valencia. The government budget problems have been worse here in some respects than some areas of Spain, but Valencia is the third largest city of Spain and therefore will continue to be an economic center of the country. If you are arriving here with a job, then you are going to be very happy here. Valencia, and Spain in general, is a place where people know how to be happy with or without money. I think that story has gotten lost, particularly in the U.S., with all the economic doom and gloom stories about Spain. The truth is, I know plenty of people in the U.S. who are employed, but are unable to enjoy it because they don't have the social safety net, social security system that Spain (at least for the moment) has. That constant worry and pressure to perform in the States could be taken as a photo negative of the usual spirit here in Spain. So I think you'll find the "mood" here plenty inviting. There is a reason I write a blog celebrating Spain, and more recently Valencia in particular... they are both wonderful places to live, not just to visit.

What a WONDERFUL response!!! Thank you for taking the time to reply. Yes, was exactly what I was looking for. When we arrive in Valenica, we will be employed and we will be able to stay 1 year committed and 2 years if all goes well with us. My husband has been in the same company for 20 years and has helped grow it to where it is today.

We are looking forward to Valencia. We have a 4 and 7 year old. We have 1 year left of planning and selling before we get on that plane. The way the weeks fly wont be long.

I shall check out your blog. Thanks again for the full response.

Dear Linzy,

As a valencian person i like the city od arts and sciences if you have kids. Most of the buildings have private pools and playgrounds ideal for kids. I will try to look for an area where the kids can make friends easily if they dont speak spanish. So maybe the school can also give you a bit of advice.

I also like la cañada, la eliana and mas camarena for kids as it is a nice chalet area. Also you will find english schools here (i will talk about schools in a moment).


There are several english schools in valencia (they are expensive): El plantio international school (best reputation), The british school, Caxton collegue, hispano norteamericano, the cambridge school community collegue (cheaper)

Most of them do international gcse (igcse), a-levels or international bachaloria. The system is the same as in the uk.

All of them have buses that drive home the kids and they have lunch at school. Teachers are english native. The advantage of going to these schools are that all the kids speak good english and classes are all in english so your kid will not find it hard.

I have gone to el plantio, and i highly recommended! Its located in la cañada. About 10% of the kids are foreign and groups are not really big.

Hi Jennifer,

I know it has been a few years but I was wondering if you made it to Valencia with your family and where you decided to send your kids to school. We will be moving soon and I am going crazy trying to figure out where to enroll my kids. Our first choice was the American school (we are moving from the States) but it is not likely that they will get in so I would appreciate any feedback on other international schools. Thanks!

Hi Analewis,

It's been two years since Jennifer was last online. I suggest you create a new topic on the Valencia forum so that you get some updated infos.

All the best,

Contact Daniel at The Spanish Brick. He helped us in all areas during our move from Toronto to Valencia. He can help with all of your real estate questions and offer advice for starting a business here. He's a great guy and he lives in the U.K.

Good luck! And tell him "Steve from Toronto" sent you.

Hi, i have just found a helpfull expat group Valaencia on Facebook.  really good.  its called "expast in Valencia"

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