The City of Arts and Sciences

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The City of Arts and Sciences
Avd. Autopista del Saler, No. 7
Valencia, Spain
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Valencia, Spain: It has an Umbracle! What's an Umbracle?!

The City of Arts and Sciences

They choked a little with the name. The City of Arts and Sciences, Valencia, Spain's five-part complex, designed by Santiago Calatrava and Félix Candela, is much more fun than its name—though doing laundry sounds like more fun than that name.

What's there: The Science Museum, filled with interactive exhibits; L'Oceanografic, Europe's biggest marine park, with dolphins, whales, and the Underwater Restaurant; L'Hemisferic, with a planetarium and an IMAX movie theater; the Palau de les Arts Reina Sofía, four auditoriums for opera, other music, and theater; and the Umbracle. The Umbracle is Calatrava's expansive greenhouse promenade that includes the 'Parade of Sculptures'.

So if the name of the place evokes term papers and boring lectures, get past that and go. If you do, what it's more likely to evoke is the pleasures of childhood, where wonders never cease.

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