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IMAST: The 21st International Meeting on Advanced Spine Techniques


About Valencia

Valencia offers a combination of avant-garde style, culture and Mediterranean spirit, bound to captivate any visitor. There are thousands of things to discover, but we would like to suggest reasons why you just have to come and see it for yourself

It's 300 Days of Sunshine
A mild climate with 300 days of sunshine per year and an average temperature of 19º C make Valencia an ideal destination at any time of year.

It's Mediterranean Cuisine
A rich and varied cuisine whose key ingredient is rice prepared in a variety of ways, with paella as the signature dish.

It's Beaches
In Valencia, you have seven kilometres of beaches on which to find your perfect spot. Choose from city beaches, which you can get to by metro or tram, or more unspoilt beaches, such as El Saler in the Albufera Natural Park.

It's Lifestyle
In Valencia, thousands of people soak up the sun all year round at an outdoor bar or café, while having a few tapas and a glass of wine or cold beer. And at night… there are lots of different kinds of scene in the various nightlife areas, from the hotspots in the old town, to those by the sea or in the student areas.

It's Festivals and Traditions
In Valencia there is always something to celebrate. Its most important festivals include Las Fallas, when the city is filled with gigantic sculptures that are burned to mark the arrival of springtime. Other festivals include Maritime Holy Week, the procession of Our Lady of the Forsaken, Valencian Corpus Christi and the July Fair.

It's Green Spaces
Valencia converted the former bed of the River Turia, which used to run through the city, into an enormous 9 km long park. Today it is a green lung in which to walk, cycle, play sport, go to cafés, etc. Valencia also has a unique and fascinating nature area: the Albufera Natural Park.

It's 2000 Years of History
Valencia contains influences from Roman, Visigoth, Moorish and Medieval cultures. This is evident in many of its iconic monuments and buildings, such as the Lonja de la Seda (Silk Exchange, designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site), La Almoina, the Serranos and Quart Towers and the Cathedral.

It's Cutting-Edge Architecture
Great 21st century buildings, such as the City of Arts and Sciences designed by Santiago Calatrava, The Conference Centre by Norman Foster and the Veles e Vents building by David Chipperfield, have all helped to make Valencia a landmark of architecture and a symbol of European avant-garde.

It's Unique Nooks and Crannies
Valencia will fascinate you with its charming little spots that do not appear in guidebooks but that you will discover during your visit. The mansion houses and plazas of the Barrio del Carmen, the Plaza Redonda, the Santa Catalina Church - in whose square you will find the narrowest building in Europe - the frescos in the San Nicolás Church, the clock of the Santos Juanes Church, San Vicente’s baptismal font in the San Esteban parish church or the alligator over the door of the El Patriarca Church are just some examples of the hundreds of surprises that Valencia has in store for you.

Visa Requirements

The regulations governing the rights and freedoms of foreign nationals in Spain and their social integration are established in Organic Law 4/2000 of 11 January, modified by Organic Law 8/2000 of 22 December; Organic Law 11/2003 of 29 September; Organic Law 14/2003 of 20 November; and Organic Law 2/2009 of 11 December. The implementing regulation for the law was approved by Royal Decree 2393/2004 of 30 December.

In the case of citizens from the European Union, Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Switzerland and their spouses, common-law partners, ascendants and descendants, the applicable regulation is established in Royal Decree 240/2007 of 16 February on nationals from European Union member states and other States which have signed up to the agreement on the European Economic Area, entering and remaining in Spain.

Foreign nationals who wish to travel to Spain must be in possession of a visa, unless they are nationals from countries which are not included in the list of countries with the obligation to carry a visa in order to cross external borders for stays in the Schengen Area of no more than three months (90 days) in a period of six months (180 days) from the date of entry into the Schengen Area.

There are three types of visa for travelling to Spain, depending on the type of journey you intend to make: Airport transit visa. These visas allow the holder to cross the international transit zone of a Spanish airport. Nationals from countries included in the list of countries with the obligation to carry an airport transit visa must be in possession of this visa (list I and list II).

Short stay visa (Schengen).
These visas allow the holder to transit through or remain in Spanish territory and all other Schengen States for a maximum period of three months (90 days) within a period of six months (180 days) from the entry date into the Schengen Area. Nationals from countries included in the list of countries with the obligation to carry a visa in order to cross external borders must be in possession of this visa.

Time Zone

Valencia is in the Central European Summer Time (CEST), which is two (2) hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time (1 hour ahead during Daylight Savings Time).

People generally eat later than in other European countries: breakfast (7:30 and 10:00 a.m.) is similar to the continental style. Restaurants serve lunch between 1:00 pm and 3:00 pm, and dinner from 8:30 pm until 10:30 pm.


Valencia enjoys a mild temperate Mediterranean climate. The average annual temperature is 17ºC with warm summers and very mild winters, rarely below 10ºC. There is only light rainfall mainly in autumn and the beginning of spring.


Standard electrical voltage in Valencia is 220-240 V AC, 50 Hz. A transformer and an adapter are necessary to use North American electrical appliances whose plugs have two square pins. Adapters are available in most hardware stores.


Tips are included in all prices and bills, so tipping is not considered obligatory. However, if the service received is considered satisfactory, especially in bars and restaurants, a tip is often left.

Valencia International Airport


Information Service: Phone +34 961 598 500
Distance from the airport to the city centre: 8 Km.
Approx. cost Airport-Valencia city centre taxi: 20 Euros.


Get the VLC Tourist Card at the Tourist Info office at the airport and enjoy unlimited, free public transport around the city (including the Valencia-Airport route). It also offers great discounts on museums, leisure activities, shopping and restaurants. More info at www.valenciatouristcard.com

Past Meetings

IMAST Committee

Chair - Christopher I. Shaffrey,MD Jacob M. Buchowski, MD, MS
Kenneth M.C. Cheung, MD
Richard H. Gross, MD
Steven W. Hwang, MD
Lori A. Karol, MD
Panagiotis G. Korovessis, MD, PhD
Mun Keong Kwan, MBBS, MS Orth
Jean-Charles Le Huec, MD, PhD
Morio Matsumoto, MD
Addisu Mesfin, MD
Hani Mhaidli, MD
Vikas V. Patel, MD
Frank J. Schwab, MD
Rajiv K. Sethi, MD
Justin S. Smith, MD, PhD
Hee Kit Wong, MD