The top 5 most bizarre events in Spain
It is no secret that Spaniards like to enjoy themselves. If you want to join in the fun, book a trip when 5 of the most bizarre events in Spain are taking place.
Some of these lively events have religious or cultural roots but others are more modern and are just about having fun. Others are completely bizarre and definitely not for the faint-hearted.
El Entroido, the festival of Laza, is a top 5 bizarre event in Spain and is probably one of the weirdest. This strange party involves people throwing large antballs at each other. The locals actually gather large balls of mud swarming with live ants and hurl them randomly at any unfortunate person that happens to be their target! However, it is very interesting to watch (perhaps from a balcony out of the way of manure-smelling missiles!) as the colourful and very ornate ‘Peliqueiros’ run through the streets holding flaming torches.
Las Fallas, The Fire Festival in Valencia takes place between 15th - 20th March. Giant puppets called ninots are carefully crafted leading up to this five-day spectacular which are then dotted around the city centre. The culmination of this festival is on 19th March at exactly midnight when all the street lights are turned off and all but one of these magnificent papier mache sculptures are set alight. The chosen ninot that is not consumed by the fire is then placed in the Fallas Museum in Valencia.
La Batalla de la Rata Muerta, The Dead Rat Battle takes place on the last Sunday of January and is definitely one of the top 5 bizarre events in Spain. The Spanish just love to throw things at each other and in the town of El Puig in Valencia they throw dead rats!!! In the annual Fiesta de San Pedro Nolasco, instead of a pinata they use a similar papier mache ornament called a "cucana". However, unlike a pinata which contains sweeties, half of the cucanas don't contain anything of the sugar variety but instead are harbouring a dead rat. If you're fortunate enough to have a deceased rodent in your cucana you get to use this as a projectile to throw at other partygoers and a free-for-all begins.
La Rapa das Bestas takes place on the first weekend in July in a town called Sabucedo, Galicia. The Shearing of the Beasts involves a group of men attempting to wrestle and tame a large group of wild horses that are brought down from the mountains. The three-day weekend celebrations begin when the herders set off in the early hours into the mountains to collect some 600 horses in total. It culminates in the rounding up of the wild horses in an ancient stone amphitheatre where men attempt to mount each horse and clip its mane and tail.
The Tomato-Throwing Festival, La Tomatina, takes place in the town of Bunol near Valencia on the last Wednesday in August and is a top 5 bizarre event in Spain. The Tomatina begins in the Plaza del Pueblo with a ham leg being placed on top of a large greasy wooden post. The goal is for someone to climb it and knock the ham off. La Tomatina begins as soon as the ham is knocked off the pole. This carnival is essentially a large tomato fight where villagers gather in the streets and large trucks come along filled with squashy tomatoes. The lucky people in the truck then get to throw about 150,000 crushed tomatoes at anybody and everybody.
If you want to experience one of the top 5 bizarre events in Spain, book a guided tour around the city to make the most of your trip.