La Lonja

Top choice historic building in North Ciutat Vella

Image by fotoVoyager Getty Images

This splendid building, a Unesco World Heritage site, was originally Valencia’s silk and commodity exchange, built in the late 15th century when the city was booming. It's one of Spain's finest examples of a civil Gothic building. Two main structures flank a citrus-studded courtyard: the magnificent Sala de Contratación, a cathedral of commerce with soaring twisted pillars, and the Consulado del Mar, where a maritime tribunal sat. The top floor boasts a stunning coffered ceiling brought here from another building.

It's worth getting the audio guide (€3) as there's almost no printed information. The exterior (covered by the audio guide) also merits examination.