I have finally found the time to write up on one of my favourite Fiesta's that is held in Spain, their Moors and Christians or Los Moros y Cristians. If you ever find yourself in Spain, make sure you check for their local events, one not to miss is the The Moors and Christians Festival which is an annual Festival that commemorates the battles between the Moors or Arabs and the Christians during the Reconquista between 8 - 15 Century.
The battle reenactments take place in some parts of Spain but not all, they are more frequently held in the Valencia Region of Spain. It is an annual Fiesta and each town that celebrates holds their event on differing dates. The festival also has different durations, these photos that I took in L'Olleria which is a small town in the Valencia Region. their festival lasts over 10 days with different activities running on different days and nights. (Nights were mainly bands and dancing which normally would not start till around midnight!)
The actual reenactment of the Moors and Christians Fiesta include Moorish capture of the city followed by the christian re-conquest. For a few days people dress up in elaborate costumes representing either Christians or Moors. Christians costumes will include the wearing of armor, helmets and lots of fur, some will ride horses too. While those representing the Muslims or Arabs will wear ancient Arab costumes sometimes they will carry scimitars and ride camels. In LOlleria they have a procession which starts on a Saturday night a 7pm, and lasts for around for 5 hours, among the marching groups of Moors and Christians there are the local music bands and various other entertainers, including performing horses, acrobats and dancers. It is free to watch, you can reserve a chair from the town council for a few euros or stand, in fact every part of the Fiesta is free to enjoy.
As you can see from a few of these photos it is a very elaborate festival, they hire professional costumes and make up artists to apply the detailed face paints, as it is an annual event the overall theme remains the same, Moors and Christians, but they choose a different sub theme each year which is depicted in their costumes. These are just a small selection of photos that I took. I have a couple of other blog posts about different events that were also held during this amazing Fiesta.