Seafood Festival in O Grove (Galicia), 2nd-12th October: Ahoy seafood lovers! Ready to slurp up oysters and chew on octopus until your belly screams “enough, I can’t take any more deliciousness”? This “Fiesta in Honour of Seafood” couldn’t be held in a more appropriate setting – Galicia – with its quaint port towns and generous helpings.
Human Castle Competition in Tarragona (Catalonia), 28th September – 5th October: Prepare to be gobsmacked by the 'castells', an incredible feat which sees men, women and children (in that order) climb up on each other’s shoulders to form human towers six to ten tiers high. A UNESCO Cultural Heritage event since 2010, this Catalan tradition is usually accompanied by lively festivals and partying.
Photo: Filippo Monteforte/AFP
International Video Gaming Fair in Madrid, 17th-19th October: Ready to play the coolest new games out on the market? Maybe you’re on the lookout for state-of-the-art gadgets and home entertainment systems not even in shops yet? Held in Madrid’s IFEMA Exhibition Centre for only three days, this fair is a must for videogame lovers.
Real Madrid – FC Barcelona, 25th October: The Clásico, the nail-biting football match everyone in Spain watches. This season’s first derby has the added advantage of being Luis Suárez’s first official match with Barça after his long ban for biting (things could get brutal). Try booking tickets now if you really want to watch it live at Madrid’s Bernabeu stadium. Otherwise, rest assured that pretty much every bar in Spain (and many thousands more around the world) will be showing it.
International Organ Festival in León, 19th-25th October: This atmospheric music festival has been held in Leon’s beautiful Cathedral for more than 30 years. Throughout that time it has gained international prestige and features some of the world’s best organ players, symphonic orchestras and solo singers.
Catalonia International Film Festival in Sitges, 3rd-12th October: If you missed out on San Sebastián’s Film Festival, here’s a chance to watch the best horror and fantasy films soon to premiere in Spain and abroad. There’s even a Sitges Zombie Walk, an undead-style carnival parade where anyone with a thirst for blood and guts can take part.
Night Marathon in Bilbao, 18th October: If you want to do a run with a difference make sure you book a place in this race, the only one in Spain that takes place at night. It starts and ends at Bilbao’s emblematic Guggenheim museum, going along the Nervión river and through the city’s old quarter. There’s also a half marathon and an even shorter race.
Virgen del Pilar Festival in Zaragoza, 4th to 13th of October: In honour of the city’s patron saint, Maños (as people from Spain's Aragón region are called) take to the streets to eat, drink and celebrate with their friends and families, year in year out. The 12th is usually the biggest day of festivities but there are plenty more events held on the other days, including beer festivals, bullfights and carnival-like parades.
Medieval Festival in Elche (Alicante), October 23rd-2nd: For 10 days, this small Valencian city is transformed into a medieval settlement with tents, jesters and jousting. So if fancy taking a trip back through time or want to join your kids with all the fun and games, make sure you check it out!
Biennial Flamenco Festival in Sevilla, September 12th-October 5th: First held in 1980, this prestigious flamenco festival is celebrated every two years in the Andalusian city of Seville. The three-week long competition features the greatest dancers, vocalists and guitarists in the flamenco world, as well as as well as up-and-coming artists . Performances take place in different host venues throughout the city, mainly theatres but also in hotels or on the street. There are also courses, conferences and seminars.
Coming up in November...