Fiesta calendar for Benissa
(all dates are approximate)
Cabalgata de Reyes - Three Kings Procession
JANUARY 7th - FEBRUARY 1st
Fira i Porrat de Sant Antoni - Festival and Fair of Saint Anthony - For many years, this fair was the commercial centre of the district. Attractions include a Mediaeval Market with stalls, birds of prey and street jesters; the blessing of animals, livestock fair, traveling fairground and a great variety of sporting and cultural events.
APRIL 23rd - MAY 3rd
Fiesta Patronales de la Purisima Xiqueta - Festival of the Patron of the town the Blessed Child. - Each town has its Patron Saint and a fiesta is held in their honour which usually last one week. During this time the towns commercial activity virtually shuts down as celebrations go on practically 24 hours a day. Festivities include processions, dancing in the streets, live music, sporting events and firework displays. Benissa is no exception and includes in it's celebrations extra activities such as the Coronation of the Festival Queen.
APRIL 28th - 31st - BULL-RUNNING
The famous bull running event is held in many towns at different times of the year all over Spain. Large, generally aggressive bulls are let loose in designated streets to chase after those who think they are fast enough to jump out of their way, run behind the many wooden barricades or into the steel cages set up for their protection, before they get gored. Not for the faint hearted, and definitely best left to those with more experience as it is not as easy as it looks. The bulls are very fast and many people - usually foreigners - get hurt, and occasionally killed each year due to them tripping and falling before they manage to get to safety. These bulls have large horns, and will attack through fear. Hundreds of people attend the events, sitting upon makeshift platforms above the streets or standing within the steel cages. It can become rather noisy with everyone shouting and jeering at the bulls who naturally feel trapped and we all know how a cornered wild animal reacts to this kind of situation.
JUNE 25th - 28th
Moors and Christians Fiesta. - This festival is celebrated all over Spain as their history is deeply rooted in the battles which took place over control of Spain in the 13th to 15th century. Each fiesta is a theatrical performance with participants dressed in elaborate and expensive costumes depicting both sides of the battle. The music played by the live orchestras is especially composed for the fiesta and is very dramatic. Battles are re-enacted using replicas of the weapons used so it can become a little noisy.
During the summer months, each district or street in Benissa holds its own separate celebrations. Streets are decorated with flowers, bunting and sometimes the road itself is painted in bright colours. Dinner is eaten outside at one long table the entire length of the street, followed by dancing to live music. The community is of vital importance to the Spanish way of life, and the whole street is expected to get involved and contribute both physically and financially in the celebrations. To follow is a list of the general street celebrations. The dates tend to be finalized closer to the day.
Corpus del Convento
Pla dels Molins
Barrio de San Antonio
Pda. Sta. Ana
Calle Santo Domingo
Playa de La Fustera
Costa - Camarocha - Calloa
Election of the Fiesta Queen for the coming year.