Bocairent is located in the Spanish province of Valencia. It’s five days of fiesta honoring Saint Blaise occurs annually February 1st – February 5th. Costumes, fireworks, food and folkloric dance demonstrations provide exciting entertainment. This is the town of Bocairent’s main festival day of the year and everyone turns out to line the streets and celebrate together. During the fiesta, the town’s population swells significantly with over 2,000 participants in a town of only 4,500.
The town of Bocairent has been celebrating this patron Saint of bodily ills and portraying the historic Moors and Christians characters for so long (158 years) it even has its own museum. The museum opened in 2003 and displays the typical dress for each group represented in the village. Historic festival photos and written histories line the walls and document this culturally rich event.
Moors and Christians (Moros y Cristianos) festivals happen throughout Spain at different times of the year but are particularly numerous in the Valencia area. They commemorate the battles between the Christians and Moors during the Reconquista period in Spain (8th – 15th centuries).
Lisa M. Vogele is the author of Food & Folklore: A Year of Italian Festivals, a travel reference guide that “helps you go local” by incorporating festivals into your travel planning. The second book in her Food & Folklore Series on Festivals of Spain will hit the shelves in 2017. You can find out more information about Lisa’s books, custom itineraries and small group tours at Lisa’s Travel Guides.
Dancers in Bocairent by Amedeo Campili via Facebook
Procession from Above by Amedeo Campili via Facebook