Ten marvellously fun things to do in Spain this May

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Ten marvellously fun things to do in Spain this May
Men dressed in traditional attire "chulapo" take part in the San Isidro celebrations. Photo: AFP

With longer and warmer days, May is the month when Spaniards take to the streets to throw fiesta after fiesta.



April Fair Seville, May 4th - 11th

Photo: Jorge Guettero / AFP

The only people the can out-do Sevillanos during Semana Santa are Sevillanos during the legendary April Fair. For one week the “Real de la Feria,” a huge area of the city is transformed into an amusement park with “casetas,” or canvas tents where important local families, friends, businesses, and political parties host parties that last all day and all night. This extraordinary spectacle is not for the faint hearted, with dancing, drinking, eating, and socializing taking place from early in the afternoon until sunrise every day of the fair.

Need a guide to navigating this festival? Read All the fun of the fair: A Guiri's guide to Spain's ferias

Patios de Córdoba (Córdoba courtyards festival), Córdoba, May 6th- May 19th

Photo: philipus/Depositphotos

The citizens of Cordoba will be competing for the prize of who has the most lush courtyard, decorating their patios with bright flowers, leafy green plants, fountains and more. The tradition dates back to 1921 with the town hall organizing a competition, along with music, dancing and wine.

Feria de Jerez (also known as the “Horse Fair”), Jerez de la Frontera, May 11th- 18th

Photo: AFP

Originally a livestock fair, the wonderful feria of Jerez is much more open than its more famous cousin – that held in Sevilla – as the casetas (temporary structures) are public so anyone can walk in and enjoy the food, drink and the dancing. Expect endless glasses of fino and dancing until dawn.

Titirimundi International Puppet Theatre Festival, Segovia, May 10th-15th

For five days in May, the medieval city of Segovia is transformed in this annual event for puppet enthusiasts. International puppet theatre groups stage performances across the city from traditional puppetry, to street theatre to acrobatics. Fun for all the family.

Fiestas de San Isidro, Madrid, May 10th-15th

Photo: nito103/Depositphotos

San Isidro is the patron saint of Madrid and May 15th is a public holiday for Isidro in the capital, though the celebrations usually kick off the week before and last until the Sunday after. Locals dress up in the typical chulapo and goyesco costumes, and dance to the traditional chotis in squares across old Madrid. It’s also the start of the prestigious bullfighting season at Las Ventas.
Medieval fayre, Ibiza Town, May 9th-12th

Photo: Pablo Guzmán Torres/ Flickr

For a few days in May, walking through the old walled city of Ibiza is like stepping back in time. The streets are filled with craft markets, wizards, witches, knights, princesses, princes and dragons. With displays of falconry, jousting tournaments, jesters and jugglers. All accompanied, of course, by wonderful food and drink.

WOMAD Festival (World of Music, Arts and Dance), Cáceres, May 9th-12th

Cáceres in Extremadura offers one of the world’s more unique music festivals as it is set within the historical walled city. And the three-day festival is completely free! 

L’Aplec del Caragol, Snail gastronomy festival, Lleida, May 31st - June 2nd

Photo: AFP

For three days, thousands of locals from Lleida in Catalonia celebrate the gastronomic delicacy, the snail!. More than 200,000 people take part in the fiesta, consuming around 12 tonnes of snails. But there's also music, fireworks and lots of fun street entertainment.

Mutua Madrid Open, Madrid, May 3rd-12th

Photo: AFP

A chance for tennis fans to see Rafa Nadal play on his home turf (clay) in this Masters competition. Held in the Caja Mágica, the tournament attracts all the big names from the tennis circuit.

Spanish Grand Prix, Barcelona, Sunday May 12th

Photo: Josep Lago/AFP.

The Formula 1 race held at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya is one of the oldest in the world and celebrated its centenary in 2013. A must for petrol heads.


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