Our Guided tour Castellon highlights is a private tour with an official tourist guide to the city of Castellon de la Plana, which is located 1 hour driving time from Valencia. Castellon is the place where the ancient traditions and the modernity are intertwining. During our guided tour we will delve into the history of the most important monuments and enjoy the Art Nouveau architecture of Castellon. We will learn about the the history of local ceramic production and we will observe important sculptural and pictorial works produced by local artists. The contemporary sculptor and painter Juan Garcia Ripolles is one of the most famous of them.
We will start our promenade through historical part of Castellon from Ribalta Park which is beautiful green garden located in the middle of the town designed at the end of the 19th century as a response to the economic awakening of the city. The park is welcoming tired passengers from Valencia or Sagunto who arrive to Castellon by train.
Then we will visit the Independence Square where one of the most important modernist landmarks of Castellon is located – the so called La Farola (literally Streetlight) designed by the architect Francisco Maristany. In the same square there is also one of the best-known modernist houses of Castellon known as The Stork House for its particular ceramic decoration.
We will continue our walk to the Huerto Sogueros Square to enjoy some of the most important works of the local artist Juan Garcia Ripolles. After being surprised by the magic of his sculptures, we will stop in front of the monument dedicated to the King Jaimes I of Aragon. This monument commemorates the foundation of the city of Castellon de la Plana. The city was established in its current location in 1251 thanks to the founding letter of the Aragonese king who allowed the settlers of yesteryear to move from the mountainous area to the current location located much closer to the Mediterranean Sea. This historical fact of the foundation of Castellon is commemorated annually by celebration the Magdalena Festival.
At the Tetuan Square we will see the Post Office Building, which is an impressive modernist work with various decorative elements made in the neo-Mudejar style, designed by Valencian architect Demetrio Ribes.
We will walk through the commercial streets of the center of Castellon and we will approach the former Hemp Market which was built at the beginning of the 17th century as a result of the commercial progress of the city. The building was originally designed by architect Francisco Galiança in a Renaissance style.
Then we will continue our Guided tour Castellon Highlights visiting the Main Square of Castellon, which is the most important historical space in the city. Here we will see:
- The City Hall building originally built at the end of the 17th century and completely redecorated at the beginning of the 20th century.
- The Co-Cathedral of Saint Mary, which currently has the Neo-Gothic style, although originally the temple was built between the 13th and 15th centuries in the Valencian Gothic style. Completely burned during the Spanish Civil War, the Co-Cathedral was rebuilt after the war following the project of the architect Francisco Tomas Traver.
- The El Fadri bell tower, which is an authentic symbol of Castellon. The bell tower was built between the 15th and 16th centuries and is almost 60 meters high.
- The Central Market which is located inside of the beautiful modernist building inaugurated in 1949 and designed by the architect Francisco Maristany. The Market is the best place where you can see and enjoy local products of Castellon coming both from the countryside and the sea.
During our walk through historical center of Castellon we will also visit Puerta del Sol Square where in the past was located one of the gates of the medieval protection wall. Here we will enjoy the beautiful modernist facades of the Bank of Castellon and the Old Casino building. Both buildings are authentic architectural gems. Nearby is located La Paz Square where we will see the Main Theater. By the way, this square historically was crossing the popularly called La Panderola – the old steam tram that use to link the city center with the Port de Castellon.
We will finish our walk through historical center of Castellon at the Maria Agustina Square where is huge and old ficus tree decorated with the coat of arms of different towns of the Province of Castellon. This decoration is made with the local artisan ceramic tiles. At the same square we can also see some remains of the medieval fortifications.
At the end of our promenade through historical center of Castellon we will make the transfer on our vehicle to Basilica of Our Lady of Lidon. Along the way we will see impressive sculptures of Tombatossals, Bufanuvols and Arrancapins. All of them are fictional characters from the literary work of the local writer Josep Pascual Tirado. When visiting inside the Basilica of our Lady of Lidon we will learn about interesting history of the patroness of Castellon. The devotion to this virgin started in 1366 and still continues very strong nowadays.
After visiting the Basilica of our Lady of Lidon we will make the transfer by our vehicle to El Grao of Castellon (port area). Archaeological remains discovered here confirm the presence of commercial activity already in the Iberian and Roman times, that is to say more than 2000 years ago. Nowadays El Grao is an important commercial area with its fishing and nautical port, as well as a center of leisure and gastronomy.
We recommend to complete our Guided tour Castellon Highlights with the lunch in one of the restaurants located at the El Grao of Castellon. Local cuisine is famous for wide variety of rice dishes, fresh seafood and fish and local wines and craft beers.