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Valencia vs. Catalan — What's the Difference?

By Fiza Rafique & Maham Liaqat — Updated on May 2, 2024
Valencia and Catalan are both Romance languages spoken in Spain; Valencia is mainly spoken in the Valencian Community, while Catalan is used more broadly in Catalonia and other regions.
Valencia vs. Catalan — What's the Difference?

Difference Between Valencia and Catalan


Key Differences

Valencia is a regional language of Spain, specifically in the Valencian Community, recognized officially as Valencian. On the other hand, Catalan is spoken in Catalonia, parts of eastern Spain, and is also recognized as an official language in Andorra.
Valencia shares many linguistic features with Catalan and is often considered a dialect of Catalan. However, Catalan encompasses several dialects, including Eastern and Western varieties, with broader usage across different regions.
The political and cultural identity associated with Valencia supports the distinctiveness of Valencian as a separate language, while Catalan is often associated with Catalan nationalism and identity across a larger geographic area.
In terms of standardization, Valencian follows the norms established by the Valencian Academy of the Language, which sometimes diverges from the standards set by the Institute of Catalan Studies, the main normative body for Catalan.
While both languages use similar grammar and vocabulary, there are notable differences in pronunciation and some lexical choices, reflecting their distinct cultural and historical contexts.

Comparison Chart

Geographical Spread

Valencian Community
Catalonia, Andorra, others


Regional identity
Broader cultural identity


Valencian Academy
Institute of Catalan Studies


Fewer regional variations
Several regional dialects

Political Context

Less politically charged
Associated with nationalism

Compare with Definitions


Linguistic identity.
Speakers of Valencia often assert its distinctness from Catalan.


Cultural identity.
Catalan is a key element of regional identity in Catalonia.


Dialectal variation.
Valencia has slight differences from Catalan, reflecting its regional use.


Romance language.
Catalan is spoken by millions in Catalonia and other areas.


Official status.
Valencia is used in official communications within its region.


National language of Andorra.
Catalan is the only official language of Andorra.


Educational language.
Valencia is taught in schools throughout the Valencian Community.


Diverse dialects.
Catalan includes varieties like Eastern Catalan and Western Catalan.


Regional language.
Valencia is recognized as an official language in the Valencian Community.


Medium of education.
Catalan is used extensively in educational systems in Catalonia.


Valencia (Valencian: València) is the capital of the autonomous community of Valencia and the third-most populated municipality in Spain, with 789,744 inhabitants. It is also the capital of the province of the same name.


A native of Catalonia in Spain.


A kind of woven fabric for waistcoats, having the weft of wool and the warp of silk or cotton.


A Romance language closely related to Castilian Spanish and Provençal, widely spoken in Catalonia (where it has official status alongside Castilian Spanish) and in Andorra, the Balearic Islands, and parts of southern France. It has about 6 million speakers in all.


A kind of woven fabric for waistcoats, having the weft of wool and the warp of silk or cotton.


Relating to Catalonia, its people, or its language.


An industrial city in northern Venezuela


Of or relating to Catalonia or its people, language, or culture.


A city in eastern Spain on the Mediterranean;
Valencia is the third largest city in Spain


A native or inhabitant of Catalonia.


A person of Catalan ancestry.


The Romance language spoken especially in Catalonia, the Balearic Islands, Andorra, and the Roussillon region of France.


Of or pertaining to Catalonia.


A native or inhabitant of Catalonia


The Romance language spoken in Catalonia in eastern Spain (related to Spanish and Occitan)


Relating to or denoting or characteristic of Catalonia or its inhabitants;
Catalan independence movement


Relating to or characteristic of the Catalan language;
Catalan poetry

Common Curiosities

What political significance do these languages hold?

Catalan has strong associations with regional nationalism, whereas Valencian is more about regional identity.

Are Valencia and Catalan mutually intelligible?

Yes, speakers of both languages can generally understand each other.

Where is Valencia spoken?

Valencia is spoken primarily in the Valencian Community in Spain.

Where is Catalan spoken?

Catalan is spoken in Catalonia, the Balearic Islands, parts of Aragon, and Andorra.

What is the main difference between Valencia and Catalan?

Valencia is a variant of Catalan spoken in the Valencian Community, with minor differences in pronunciation and vocabulary.

Is there a standard form of Valencia and Catalan?

Yes, both have standard forms regulated by their respective linguistic academies.

What role does Catalan play in education in Catalonia?

Catalan is a primary medium of instruction in schools across Catalonia.

How does the international community view Valencia and Catalan?

Internationally, Catalan is more widely recognized due to its broader speaker base and official status in Andorra.

Is Catalan recognized internationally?

Catalan is recognized internationally, especially due to its official status in Andorra.

How are new terms developed in Valencia and Catalan?

Both languages have academies that work on developing and standardizing new terms.

Can Valencia be considered a separate language?

While often considered a dialect of Catalan, some argue for its status as a separate language based on cultural and political reasons.

How does the media in Spain treat Valencia and Catalan?

Both languages have media outlets, but Catalan media is more widespread due to its larger speaker base.

Do Valencia and Catalan use the same alphabet?

Yes, both languages use the Latin alphabet.

What is the historical relationship between Valencia and Catalan?

Historically, Valencian developed from the Catalan spoken by settlers during the Reconquista.

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Author Spotlight

Written by
Fiza Rafique
Fiza Rafique is a skilled content writer at, where she meticulously refines and enhances written pieces. Drawing from her vast editorial expertise, Fiza ensures clarity, accuracy, and precision in every article. Passionate about language, she continually seeks to elevate the quality of content for readers worldwide.
Co-written by
Maham Liaqat

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