With a lot of history among its streets and monuments, including the appointment of two popes in the Vatican, we show you things to do in Xátiva in one day or two.
Xàtiva is a city of the Valencian Community where its monuments and buildings are witnesses of the passage of history from Roman times, through the Muslim conquest, the Christian reconquest, the kingdom of Valencia and the Borja family.
Is xativa worth visiting?
Of course. The Borjas were one of the most illustrious families of Xátiva to such an extent that they gave the world two popes, Calixtus III during the middle of the 15th century and his nephew Alexander VI at the end of the 15th century.
But there is more history that surrounds the city, since during the War of Spanish Succession, Xátiva was burned by order of Felipe V, due to the support of the inhabitants to the Austrias, the losing side of the conflict.
📷 Book this excursion from Valencia to visit Xátiva, Anna and Ontiyent in one day. Includes guide, entrance fees and transfers. You can also book the excursion to Xátiva and Anna from Benidorm.
🔝 If you live in Valencia city, we recommend you to read our article about day trips to do in one day from Valencia.
Map of things to do in Xátiva
Visit Xátiva is not only its history, the architectural ensemble and the imposing castle that watches over the city from above. In the surroundings, nature has its protagonism and there are many hiking trails to do alone, as a couple or with children.
Next, we are going to tell you things to do in Xátiva in one day or two.
The castle is the essential place to see in Xátiva and to which you have to dedicate a couple of hours. Nestled on the Sierra del Castell is a true architectural jewel within the Valencian Community and witness of different civilizations that populated it.
The castle of Xátiva is divided into two parts by the Patio de Armas (parade ground): the Castell Menor, the oldest area and of Roman and Iberian origin, and the Castell Major, the best preserved part has walls and towers of Islamic origin and areas later reconverted during the Christian reconquest.
In the tour of the Castell Major you will be able to observe the cisterns for water storage, the chapel of Queen Mari of Gothic origin and even cells that were used when the fortress housed a prison during the state of the Crown of Aragon.
The breathtaking views of the surroundings, both the historic center of Xátiva and the Solana ravine and mountains, is another of the great attractions of the castle.
Is it possible to go up to the castle of Xátiva by car?
It is possible to drive up to the entrance of the castle, but this is only possible from Monday to Saturday. On Sundays and holidays to go up to the castle you have to walk, use the tourist train service (€ 4 round trip) or the shuttle bus (€ 1 each way), which departs from the Españoleto square. On Sundays and holidays the car can be parked for free in the parking El Españoleto, where the tourist bus leaves, the blue zone and the parking Pavellón volleyball Xàtiva.
Xátiva Castle timetable and prices
The price to enter the castle of Xátiva is 6 euros for over 16 years and 4 euros for children from 8 to 16 years and is open from Tuesday to Sunday. It is important to purchase tickets online in advance, as seating is limited and only 10% of the tickets are sold at the box office. The entrance to the castle of Xátiva also includes access to the museum l’Almodí and Fine Arts.
The castle of Xativa opens its door to visitors from Tuesday to Sunday. The schedule varies according to the time of year:
- November to February: 10 am to 6 pm.
- March to October: 10 am to 7 pm.
Collegiate Church of Santa María, a must-see in Xátiva
Construction of the Basilica building began in the mid-16th century and remains unfinished to this day. Together with the castle it is the other great emblem of the city, which mixes in its architecture different styles like gothic or baroque.
From the outside it is really imposing, especially when seen from the castle, as it stands as the tallest building in the historic center. The bell tower, built later in the 19th century, is the one that stands out with its 60 meters high.
Inside the temple, the ancient and enormous access doors and the main altar with its pink marble columns stand out. The basilica houses the Collegiate Church Museum, with an important exhibition of sacred art objects, including pieces commissioned by Pope Calixtus III.
📷 Book here the guided tour of Xátiva by tuk tuk, an original way to get to know the city.
Old town of Xátiva
Surrounded by many historic buildings, passing through the old town of Xátiva seems like going back in time. The narrow pedestrian streets that mix the old with shops, bars and restaurants, give life to the best area of the city.
Besides being dazzled by the imposing buildings such as the Collegiate Church of Santa Maria, there are many bars ideal for tapas, mainly in the Market Square and on Botigues Street.
Ascending along the street that leads to the castle, in addition to the magnificent views of the historic center of Xátiva from the Bellveret viewpoint, there are ancient temples such as the chapel of Sant Josep and Sant Feliu, one of the oldest churches in the Kingdom of Valencia from the 13th century, which is worth a visit.
🔝 To learn more about the Borja family, we recommend you to read our article about things to do in Gandía.
Things to do in Xátiva, Fountains Route
One of the attractions to see in Xátiva with children is the route of the Fountains, an itinerary through the center that runs through the different and picturesque water fountains of the city.
The relationship of the city with the water comes from the time of the Arabs and continued over the centuries, being Xátiva one of the pioneering cities in terms of water transport. During the tour, different types of fountains can be observed, from the most glamorous to the simplest, the most imposing being the Royal Fountain of the Twenty-five Spouts.
Located in the old wheat market of the sixteenth century, this beautiful Gothic style building with a courtyard with Ionic columns houses the Almodí Museum, with pieces from different periods such as Roman and Muslim.
The museum’s main exhibit is the 11th century Islamic basin, made of pink marble and with beautiful reliefs reproducing different scenes. Not to be missed!
Royal Hospital, attraction to do in Xátiva in one day
The mere sight of its imposing exterior façade makes it worthwhile to enter the interior. The building of the Royal Hospital was built by Jaume I during the middle of the 13th century, in order to take care of the health of the inhabitants.
Later, during the Christian reconquest, it underwent several remodeling works until it became one of the symbols of Valencian architecture in the 16th century with its mixture of Gothic and Renaissance styles.
The chapel and the halls decorated with tiles are two of the main attractions inside the Royal Hospital.
In the heart of the historic center of the city, the Plaza de la Trinidad is not beautiful by itself, but for all the buildings that surround it with its stone facades as the palace of Alarcón and the convent of the Trinitat, which today houses the Municipal Historical Archives.
In the central part of the square is the beautiful 15th century Trinidad Fountain.
The Cova Negra and hiking, things to do in Xátiva with children
On the valley of the Albaida river, there is the Cova Negra site, a place where Neanderthal human remains have been found, who lived during the Paleolithic period. The route from Xátiva is very nice along the river, without too much physical demand in a practically flat path of two hours of walking, which makes it ideal to do it with children.
Along the route there are explanatory signs and picnic areas. Beyond the great archaeological value of the cave, the natural environment of the Albaida River, the large number of bird species that can be seen and the mountains are ideal for being in contact with nature, climbing and hiking trails.
You can get by car to the vicinity of the Cova Negra by the CV-610 to the village of Alboi. Then follow the sign indicating La chopera de Alboi. The parking lot is located on the river bank, from there you have to cross a bridge on foot to get to the Cova Negra.
Where to stay in Xátiva
There are many options where to stay in Xátiva, from traditional hotels in the city center to country houses in the mountains. Our recommendations where to stay in Xátiva are the following:
- GOMEZ ROOMS: located in a quiet area near the center, it is modern inside. Excellent value for money.
- Mont-Sant: old country house on the road leading to the castle of Xátiva. Large gardens surrounding the hotel, swimming pool and sauna. Ideal for resting in a spectacular environment.
- Bienvenidos Rooms Xàtiva: modern facilities, spacious rooms and central location. Ideal if you visit Xátiva without a car, since it is near the train station.
🏨 Do you want to look for other options? Find here the best hotels in Xátiva.
How to get to Xátiva
By car from Valencia it is about 60 kilometers, less than an hour’s drive. Take the A-7 highway to get there. Easy!
From Alicante, you should also choose the A-7, although the travel time is a little longer,
The other easy and fast way to get to Xátiva from Valencia if you don’t have a car is by Cercanías train. You have to take the C-2 line from Valencia Nord station and after an hour’s journey you will arrive in Xátiva.
The Xátiva train station is located in the center of the city. It is about a 10 minute walk.
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