Saturday, March 12, 2011

Las Fallas storms Valencia

Las Fallas storms Valencia

La Mascleta

Las Fallas begins in Valencia with La Mascleta.

Every March the city of Valencia erupts with Las Fallas, one of Europe’s biggest street parties.

Las Fallas (pronounced fie-yas) is held in honour of Saint Joseph. Between 15-19 March Valencia combusts with energy and bulges at the seams with a million visitors, doubling the city’s population.

The festival has its origins in the celebrations of the city’s carpenters, who used to toss their tools onto bonfires. In reality it dates back further than that, to pagan celebrations of the spring, and the spirit of those early days lives on in the riotous noise and fire of the modern festival.

La Masclet√°

Such is the Valencian enthusiasm for a party that every year Las Fallas seems to begin a little earlier. The official kick-off is 1st March, and everyday at 2pm from that day on the town square holds a seven-minute display of “sound fireworks” called La 

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