The “Bell Tower of the Cathedral” is also known as “La Torre del Micalet”, because in its upper part is the famous bell “El Micalet”, dedicated to San Miguel, to protect the entire city from storms and other evils.

This tower is not the first to house bells in the cathedral, since the “Old Bell Tower”, located in the current old chapterhouse or chapel of the Holy Chalice, also had several bells, of which the “Caterina”, from 1305, the oldest bell still in operation belonging to the Crown of Aragon, is preserved. The “New Bell Tower”, or current tower, began to be built in 1381, as can be read on the tombstone at its feet, and was completed around 1420. From that moment on, successive bells were cast which, together with the “Caterina”, constitute the set of eleven that has survived to date.

The tower contains three rooms, generally closed to the public. On the first floor is “La Presó”, where those fleeing justice took refuge, remaining under the protection of cathedral jurisdiction. It is a gloomy room, with wide walls, which only receives the sun twice a year, and for a few minutes. The second room, larger and octagonal like the rest, is known as the “House of the bell ringer”, because it lived, until the early twentieth century, those responsible for ringing the bells. This room communicates with the upper room through a hole in the ceiling, which allowed some strings of the bells to pass to the bell’s own room, from where he performed the simplest touches. At that time the dedication of the bell ringer was intense, which forced him to remain throughout the day near the bells: he rang about ten times throughout the day and for almost two hours on ordinary days.

On the third floor are the bells. Currently this room is only open to the public when the bell ringers go up to manually ring the bells, which happens quite often, since they ring on all the festivities of the liturgical calendar, occasions that are outlined in the calendar that is distributed at the entrance door to the tower.

In this third room there are eleven old bells, installed from 1420. Among them there is a set of five large bells, which are turned around for the festivities, and which are, from low to high, "El Vicent" (1559), "L'Andreu" (1605), "El Manuel" (1621), "El Jaume" (1429) and "La Maria" (1544). The other six bells are known as "minors", and are: "L'Ursula" (1440), "La Violant" (1735), "La Caterina" (1305), "La Barbara" (1681), "El Pablo" (1489) and "L'Arcis" (1529). The bells, according to the traditional Valencian denomination, have male or female gender, depending on the saint to whom they are dedicated.

The simultaneous ringing of all bells only takes place once a year: at twelve o'clock on the day of Corpus Christi. These eleven bells are played manually, and only one, "La Bàrbera" has a motor, directed from a computer, and that is used only for daily touches, since its mechanism does not prevent manual touches. Two bells are tolled automatically, pulling a chain as if it were a bell ringer: "Maria", who calls prayer three times a day, and "El Manuel", which reproduces, in its entirety, the traditional touch of "closing the walls", whose purpose was to announce the closure of all the gates of the city. The "Close" can be heard from 8 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. in winter and an hour later in summer.

The three oldest bells in this room (La Caterina, El Pablo, El Jaume) travelled to the Universal Exposition in Seville in 1992. The Generalitat Valenciana took advantage of this historic occasion to restore the complex, the presence in the pavilion of the Community spread the bells and the ringing of the Cathedral of Valencia throughout the world. Subsequently, the windows of the hall were closed, to recover the traditional sound and the historical appearance of the tower.

In the room you can also see the traditional "Matracas", wooden instruments similar to the popular "carracas", intended to replace the bells during Holy Week, when the liturgy prevents playing.

The conservation of the bells, the ringing and the opening to the public of this room are due to the work of the Gremi de Campaners Valencians, a cultural association dedicated to these tasks since 1988, and which also promotes publications on these and other bells of the Valencian Community. On the terrace of the tower, which is usually the only area accessible to the public, is "El Micalet", one of the largest bells on the peninsula, and the largest in the entire Crown of Aragon. Since 1990 it has been ringing again, thanks to a grant from the City Council, which, as patron saint of the bell since ancient times, is responsible for its maintenance. "El Micalet", according to an agreement signed around 1420, only sounds to mark the passage of the hours of day and night and cannot be used for other touches, except in extraordinary cases, such as the celebration of the 750th anniversary of the conquest of Valencia by King James the Conqueror in 1988.

On this bell, 235 cm. in diameter, there is another, the "Bell of the Quarters" (1736), which people usually call "Vicent Ferrer", although its patrons are actually Jesus, Mary, Joseph Joaquim and Anna. This bell announces quarters for the day, and at night, so as not to disturb, gives a single touch to the stockings. The two bells are located in a baroque belfry, much later than the tower and of dubious taste, erected at the end of the eighteenth century to replace an earlier structure of wooden beams.

In 1378, Valencia Cathedral housed the first mechanical clock on the peninsula that operated bells. The last clock of this nature was installed in 1684, which remained in service until the 60s, being replaced in the 90s by the first computer.

Above the dome of the cathedral there is a small bell, "El Cimboriet" (1805). The interior of the Cathedral also houses other itinerant bells: the "Rotgle", or wheel of bells, which is used every day, as well as two other small warning bells, which have no inscriptions, and which could be those worn by King Conqueror in 1238 to mark the new sound culture of Christians. They are located in the ambulatory, after the main altar, and in front of the main sacristy.

Bell ringers of Valencia Cathedral
Non-profit cultural association
Hermitage of Santa Llúcia - Calle de l'Hospital, 15
Telephone: 963 924 429 - 963 856 652 - 46001 - Valencia

Dades bàsiques


Summer: April to October, every day from 10 am to 7.30 pm
Winter: November to March, Monday to Friday from 10 am to 6.30 pm. Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and from 5.30 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Special opening hours:
Easter: Thursday from 10 am to 2.30 pm, Friday from 10 am to 1.30 pm, Saturday from 10 am to 5 pm
From 1 August to 15 September: Monday to Friday from 10 am to 7 pm. Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 7.30 p.m. and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. and from 2 p.m. to 7.30 p.m.


Adults € 2. Groups of adults € 1.5. Children 1€


Plaza de la Reina s/n
46001 Valencia