Founded as a Roman military colony, Valencia was once occupied by the Moors, Visigoths, Catalans and Aragonese. When Islamic culture settled in, Valencia prospered around the 10th century, thanks to a booming trade in paper, silk, leather, ceramics, glass and silver-work. The Saint Vincent Cathedral was turned into a mosque and the Moors left their marks in Valencia’s architecture.
In 1238, Valencia was besieged by the King James I of Aragon who populated the new kingdom with Catalan and Aragonese people. The Christians reconverted many edifices back into churches. By the 15th and 16th centuries, Valencia had developed into one of the biggest cities in the Mediterranean.
Since the completion of the City of Arts and Sciences in 1998, the city gained its reputation as a new commercial hub of Spain. In 2003, Valencia was selected to host the historic America's Cup yacht race, the first European city ever to do so. Today, Valencia stands at the forefront of Spanish advancement and technological development, leading the country into the future.