Friday, 25 March 2011

Valencia - Las Fallas - Part 1

Part 1 and some...

So I've said that the weekend was brilliant and whacky and chaotic and crazy (all of which are true) but did I mention the sunhsine?

The Las Fallas festival, in part, comes from carpenters celebrating the end of Winter and burning their wooden scraps.   Those scraps are what previously made up the falles (or statues).  Now they're made by full time artisans.

What better way to celebrate the end of a long travelless London Winter with some glorious sunshine.  Walking in it, sitting in it, even laying in it (gardens and beach, not so much on the street) was just glorious. 

Science and Arts Musuem (and carpark!!)

The beach.  Oh how I loved it (but not my sunburnt feet and nose)
Ceramics Museum (marbl building - quite amazing up close)
One of the last remaining gates to the town from the Moorish times.
The Central Market

...and on to the festival...

As mentioned, the festival is quite multi faceted.  Wiki does a pretty good job explaining things, so I'll be brief and just share some pics.  Pics of the statues & fires will follow seperately (there are so many - I want to cull etc).

La Mascleta  is the day time fireworks display.  I know - day time fireworks, right? I'd seen the once before and been completely underwhelmed.  These though, are paired with outright explosisions and create their own beat.  Completly amazing. Pics, well not so much so maybe just appreciate the blue blue sky that had me mesmorised.


L'Ofrena Floral is the offering of the flowers to the virgin mary.  The offering is done in tradtional Valencian dress and left in the Plaza de la Virgen where they are then put to use building a huge statue (you can see the progress below over two days)


The traditional dress is quite something.  I didn't get any great pics of it but here's the best...
Loads were wearing veils as well but I don't seem to have any clear pics.  The parades of men and women in traditional dress (followed by brass bands at regular intervals) seemed to go from about 11am to 1am.

Els Castells refers to the nightly fireworks displays that get progressively later.  On the 17th they were at 1am, 1.30am on the 18th (La Nit del Foc).  It's well documented that I'm a sucker for fireworks so I loved them.  Whilst there wasn't anything I hadn't really seen before is terms of colour, size, spray etc, these were set of in such a rapid succesion and really built.  I loved it.

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1 comment:

  1. Your pictures are fantastic! The Science and Arts Museum is such a unique looking place, I love it.