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The Traveller's Magazine
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Fires, traditions, parodies, parties, a little bit ironic, a little bit satiric and a whole lot wild! Valencia heats up in March as the city celebrates it’s annual Fallas festival. Where else can you see papier-mâché puppets of politicians burst into flames? This spring festival is not to be missed.

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Festival low-down

If you’ve never been to Las Fallas before, what are you waiting for? It’s a week-long festival, the biggest crowd attracter of the year in this region of Spain and should not be missed. In the days leading up to the “grande finale” visitors can get a close look at the hundreds of papier-mâché sculptures in the streets. They are incredible, so detailed and real feats of artistic talent and craftsmanship.

Ring in spring with the Valencians! The last four days of the festival are the wildest, with firecracker-throwing to live music as a nightly tradition (it’s no wonder the city’s elderly pack up for the week and head elsewhere). All week long there is paella-cooking contests, street parties, beach games, bullfights, concerts, all-round Spanish fun.

At midnight on the final day, each falla explodes into flames! Months of hard work down the drain? Hardly! For the artisans, it’s an honour as the festival celebrates Saint Joseph’s Day. Check out last year’s post Las Fallas: Spain rings in spring with puppets on fire to find out more about the festival.

Las Fallas 2012

Be prepared for a wild couple of days. When you arrive, hit up the tourist office for a map of all the locations of the fallas around the city. Make your way to see them all during the day, but don’t forget the local sightseeing too! Check out the Ciudad des las Artes y las Ciencias (City of Arts and Sciences). Inside is the largest aquarium in Europe.

Getting there

Take off from all over the UK on flights to Valencia. The festival takes place from March 12th to 19th, so there is still plenty of time to find last-minute flights with a low cost airline. Ryanair flies London Stansted – Valencia for £169 (return, tax included) for travel March 13-22/2012. The flight is just under two and a half hours.

[search departure=”London” arrival=”Valencia” depday=”13″ depmonthyear=”03/2012″ retday=”22″ retmonthyear=”03/2012″]

Introducing… the ninots

Europe

Pa Gasol

 

Storks

Zapatero

Politicians

Nude

Up in flames

Have you ever been to Las Fallas? What is your favourite Spanish festival?

Imgs: calafellvalo, villacampa, poastro, the sky lit up, Marc Sardon / Flickr cc.

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2 responses to “Las Fallas: is there any better spring party?

  1. the valencian fiesta of st. joseph las fallas is wonderful to see. the wonderful paper mache sculptures are too good too burn and you think it has taken 12 months to build them. and the beautiful valencian dress . the city is full of magic

    1. Thanks for the comment Elena, you’re right, it is a shame to see such craftsmanship and artistry go up in flames! They’re so beautiful! Will you be there at the festival this year?

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