Halloween in Spain. Dia de las Brujas.

Halloween is the evening before the Christian holy day: All Saints Day, which is the most important festival of autumn in Spain.

Do you know that Halloween’s origins date back to the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain. The Celts, who lived 2,000 years ago in the area that is now Ireland, the United Kingdom and northern France, celebrated their new year on November 1.

In the United States and Canada Halloween is officially celebratedsince 1921. In the 70s and 80s it became known worldwide thanks to several movies. Now many European countries celebrate it as well. In Spain this festival is really popular and eveyrone takes part in it. The word “Hallowe’en” means “hallowed evening” or “holy evening”. Actually Halloween is a night of costumes, fun, fear and time of a good party as well 🙂

Halloween in Spain is a three-day celebration that starts on October 31st with Dia de las Brujas (Day of the Witches), then continues on November 1st with Dia de Todos los Santos (All Saints Day) and finish on November 2nd with Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead).

If you are spending Halloween in Barcelona, you should visit the city’s magnificent cemeteries – Montjuic, Poblenou, and Les Corts. There are some special night tours and wonderful classical music concerts. On October 31st in the city’s famous bars and nightclubs, you’ll also have the chance to enjoy the Catalan tradition of  La Castanyada. This is a popular All Saints’ Day festival in Catalonia. Full of various events, music concerts, and stalls filled with seasonal delicacies, including castanyes (chestnuts), sweet potatoes, sweet wine and panellets – small Catalan cakes made of marzipan, almonds, and various flavors.

panellets and roasted chestnuts and sweet potatoes, a typical dish of Catalonia, Spain, in All Saints Day

In Northern Spain, due to the Celtic traditions, Halloween is celebrated with more enthusiasm. In Galicia, a region famous for its rich local folklore and ghost legends, the night of 31st of October is known as Noite dos Calacús (Night of the Pumpkins) and is celebrated through a range of common activities such as pumpkin carving, costume parties, bonfires, rituals, and sometimes even trick-or-treating. Otehr special thing is the quemada – a strong alcoholic drink usually made from aguardiente, unground coffee, sugar, and lemon rind or orange peels. Traditionally, the quemada is prepared within a pumpkin and consumed after reciting a spell (esconxuro).

quemada-794770

Trick or treat: even if you think it is something of American movies, is a custom that has spread in Spain. Especially in residential and housing areas. Parents and children visit neighbours and ask for sweets.
Costumes: choose a costume which produce fear. Now it’s time to be a mummy, a vampire or a with.

We wish you a lot of fun! Remember that you can stay in our hostels in Valencia which are located in the heart of the city and two hostels in Barcelona close to the city center.

Spartan Race – chalange yourself

Have you heard about Spartan Race? Is a World’s Best Obstacle Race, a real adventure for everyone. Has 3 routes with a lengtht of 5 km (SPRINT), 13 km (SUPER) and 20 km (BEAST). Each track is filled with a mud, water, and obstacles designed to help you discover your inner Spartan. 😉 Athletes of all fitness levels will enjoy participating in a Spartan Race and the feeling of accomplishment that comes at the finish line.

The idea comes from USA. Spartan Race was created to bring the excitement of obstacle racing to spectators and athletes alike. In 2014 there were organized 130 events in 15 countries and 6 continents. As you see is available for everyone in the world.

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Spartan Race as well has events for kids and youth to involve the whole family in the competition. If you´re not sure if you are ready to take part in Spartan Race there are guide workouts of the day, nutrition tips to help you eat better, and free workouts held in cities wherever Spartan Races are organized.

So don´t wait and sign up for the coming event in Barcelona or next one organized in Valencia. Let yourself for an active weekend combined with sightseeing and relax. After race you can rest in our comfortable hostels, book your place here before it’s too late 😉

To register go to: http://spartanrace.es/?lang=en

Where: Barcelona

When: 8-9th October 2016

Where: Valencia

When: 3rd December 2016

¡TUNAS in Valencia!

From 30 September to 2 October in Valencia will be held the III Certamen Nacional Científico-Técnico de Tunas.

A tuna is a group of students in traditional/old university clothes which is characterized by singing, playing instruments and traveling. Not all members of tuna are profesional musicians, sometimes just a few of them. It is an ancient tradition that emerged in Spain, and spread to various countries in Europe as Portugal or Holland, and in Latin America in Mexico, Colombia, Peru, Chile, etc.

Tuna was formed by young people who because of their limited resources need to earn money. Nowadays students are not part of “tuna” for money, but for keeping a tradition alive and to have fun, travel and meet new people from other universities. A member of a tuna calls a “tunante“, but is usually known as a “tuno“.

From its origins to the present day, Tunas have continued the cultivation of popular instruments such as the bandurria, lute, guitar and tambourine

Interesting fact: up until recently, only male students were admitted to be a part of tunas, but in the last few years new tunas have been formed for female students.

Here there is a short program of the event:

programa

When: Friday at 16:00, 30 September 2016
Where: Ateneo Mercantil de Valencia, Plaza del Ayuntamiento 18
Cost: free

Tuna will take place in the city center of Valencia, where all our hostels are situated so you can be close to the main events! 🙂

Rules and Tips for #LaTomatina2016

La Tomatina starts already in 2 days! Are you ready for one of the craziest ‪‎food festivals‬? Before starting the tomato battle remember about a few things for your own safety and comfort.

THE RULES OF LA TOMATINA
Organizers ask participants to respect following rules:

  1. Do not enter with bottles or hard objects – you can cause an accident or damages to your battle’s fellows.
  2. Do not tear or throw your T-shirts, nor others T-shirts.
  3. Squash the tomatoes before throwing them, the hit will be less painful.
  4. Keep a safe distance of the lorries.
  5. Stop to throw tomatoes when you hear the shot of the second warning firework.
  6. Follow the security staff directions.

7 TIPS YOU MUST KNOW!

  1. Wear old clothes – which you are ready to throw away.
  2. Wear shoes with a decent grip – avoid using flip-flops – you can lose them in the tomato fight.
  3. Use the goggles – your eyes can be sore because of the tomato acid.
  4. Use waterproof cameras– in case u want to take pictures or just use a protective case.
  5. Follow the security directions and keep a safe distance of the lorries.
  6. Take part in the palo-jabón – a soap-covered pole with a Spanish prosciutto (jamón) on the top; the person who climbs to the top and get the jamón, win it!
  7. Enjoy as much as u can 😉

While visiting Buñol a cute town surrounded by mountains, take a walk through the streets which combine history and modernity. You can relax in urban parks next to the various fountains.

See you soon! Enjoy this extraordinary festival 😀

Reggae for freedom – Rototom Sunsplash Festival is coming!

reagge

Rototom Sunsplash – the biggest reggae festival in Europe starts in a few days! From 13 to 20 August the beach of Benicàssim will gather thousands of people. This is a week of enjoying one of the greatest events of reggae culture.

Rototom Sunsplash is not just a music festival. It also has a variety of activities and cultural events. This festival has always spread a philosophy based on the promotion of peace, human rights and social justice, and thanks to these qualities, the Rototom has been awarded the medal of UNESCO for its work in promoting Culture Peace and Nonviolence.

The festival imitates the traditional Jamaican Reggae Sunsplash. Since 1994 thanks to concerts of international musicians, often Jamaicans, festival calls from various European Countries a lot of people passionate about reggae.

On the main stage you can see and listen among others: Damian ‘Jr. Gong’ Marley ★ Manu Chao La Ventura ★ Alborosie & The Shengen Clan ★ Morgan Heritage ★ Dub Inc ★ Mykal Rose ★ Beres Hammond ★ Israel Vibration ★ Tarrus Riley ★ Tiken Jah Fakoly ★ Kabaka Pyramid & The Bebble Rockers ★ Freddie McGregor & Big Ship Band..

More information about the line-up and other details you can find on the official website: https://www.rototomsunsplash.com/en/

After having fun at the festival, you can´t miss a chance to visit Valencia – the third biggest city in Spain, located about one hour from Benicàssim. Come to the heart of Valencian Community called City of Arts and Science which is one of the 12 Treasures of Spain, and enjoy your time here as well!

 

La Tomatina

La Tomatina is one of the craziest festival in Spain in which participants throw tomatoes and get involved in this tomato fight purely for entertainment purposes. Everything started in the last Wednesday of August in 1945. The local youth, like most citizens, was taking part in the traditional parade of Giants and Big-Heads figures. Suddenly among the group of boys it came to the scuffle. Next to them there was a greengrocer’s with boxes full of tomatoes for sale which they used as a weapon. The following year, the same group of people started a quarrel and vegetable battle with the tomatoes they brought from home. Since that time this activity has been held every year, during the week of festivities of Buñol.

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The festival begins with the palo jabón: where revellers aim is to climb up a greasy pole with a jamón on top. Participants then spend a whole hour throwing tomatoes at each other; by the end of it, the whole town square is coloured red and rivers of tomato juice flow freely.

In the early 50s La Tomatina was banned and later canceled a few times. In 1957 was finally recognized by the authorities of Buñol and in subsequent years began to be promoted as a part of the annual celebration of the city. Since 1980, the supply of tomatoes are provided by the city. Every year the amount of vegetables used in battle increases. Along with this growth also increases the number of participants who are coming to the Buñol from all over the world. In 2002 the Spanish Ministry of Tourism recognized the Tomatina as the Festival of International Tourist Valor.

Attention: accommodation is really expensive during the festival, so be sure that you book it earlier.

Date: last Wednesday of August, this time 31.08.2016
Address: village of Buñol, 40km (24 miles) to the west of Valencia
Event cost: check our packages here: https://www.feetuphostels.com/hostels-valencia/tomatina.html
Category: Food & Drink & Fun