Fiesta de las Fallas

La fiesta de las Fallas de Valencia or 'Las Fallas' is a traditional celebration in honor of Saint Joseph that is celebrated every year in the whole province of Valencia in the first weeks of March. Although 'Las Fallas' officially starts on the last Sunday of February with "La Crida", the most important festivities take place between 15 and 19 March. In 2016, the festival was declared an intangible cultural world heritage site by UNESCO.

Picture by Harry Fabel

The term "Fallas" refers to both the party and also to the images of wood and polystyrene made especially for the party. The images consist of a basic structure and a number of 'Ninots', puppets that represent real-life characters. Some 'Fallas' are huge and can even be 30 meters high and contain dozens of dolls.

Picture by Harry Fabel

'Las Fallas' officially starts on the last Sunday of February with the opening party "La Crida" and ends on March 19 with "La Cremà" - the burning of the images made for the party. This continues until late at night and is the highlight of the festival.

Picture by Harry Fabel

Although there is a celebration throughout the entire period, the biggest parties only start to break loose during the last five days. From 15 to 19 March it will be one big party for a week. Everywhere in the city, there are music performances, DJs, paella cooking competitions on the street, lots of drinks, churros and lots of fireworks. There are also many parades with different themes and from 1 to 19 March 'La Mascletà' takes place every day at 2 pm, a 7-minute violent blast that explodes in different rhythms and varying volumes.

Important moments during 'Las Fallas':
  • Last Sunday of February - La Crida, the official opening.
  • March 15 - La Plantà, the building of the structure of the images.
  • March 16 - The judging the artworks.
  • 17 and 18 March - L'Ofrena de Flors or La Ofrenda - traditional parade through the streets of Benidorm to make flower offerings to the Virgen De Los Desamparados.
  • March 18 - Nit del Foc - the night on which the largest fireworks show takes place.
  • 19 March - Cabalgata Del Fuego - fire procession that brings the fire into the city to set fire to the 'Fallas' later in the evening.
  • March 19 - La Cremà - starting at 10 p.m. the images are set on fire, the absolute highlight of the festivities.