Have you ever ran with bulls? In Spain you can! An event is centered around running with bulls in Pamplona, Spain. This event occurs every year July 6th through the 14th. Over one million people travel to Pamplona to participate in the run or to spectate. People gather on the streets and balconies of Santo Domingo, Mercaderes, and Estafeta to join in on the adrenaline rush and excitement. Every morning people line up on the route of the bull run, sometimes even in front of the bulls that weigh up to 1,300 pounds! Six fighting bulls are chosen based on strength and size.
Festivals of Spain
“Every morning people line up on the route of the bull run, sometimes even in front of the bulls that weigh up to 1,300 pounds!”
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They are released on the streets along with six oxen to help herd the beast and keep them on the course. Runs usually last about four minutes, but there is always the chance that a bull or two can go rogue and break out of the herd causing the race to last longer and can result in more injuries. The origins of this race came from the need to transport bulls from the countryside outside the city to the bull ring. This festival hosts nine days of partying and family friendly activities.
Another fun festival is the April Fair of Seville. This is the best time to visit and explore Seville as the entire city is flooded with an authentic and festive Spanish atmosphere. This festival starts two weeks after holy week. The festival lasts seven days and it is filled with dancing, drinking, eating, and socializing. Monday hosts “La Noche del Pescaito” meaning fish night. It refers to this being the evening when traditionally fish is eaten for dinner. After dinner most people go to the “Portada” which is the beautiful structure at the entrance to the fair where thousands and thousands of lights are switched on by the Mayor of Seville at night.
Tuesday is the first official day of the festival. Horseback parades pass through the fairground and many women wear beautiful flamenco dresses while men wear traditional suits known as “el traje corto”. The rest of the week continues the festivities with midday processions of horses carrying people in traditional attire to the Real Maestranza bullring. Every evening some of the year’s top bullfights take place at the historic Plaza de Toros.
Spain is full of rich history and culture. A great way to learn and experience Spanish culture would be to learn a little bit of the language or brush up on it and participate in these festivities!
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