Also known as the April Fair, the Feria of Seville is held each year in the Los Remedios neighbourhood. Taking up an area of over 450,000 square metres, with over 1,000 'casetas', it's no surprise that this is the highlight of the year in Seville.
What is the Feria?
Declared by the Government of Spain as a Festival of International Tourist Interest, the Feria of Seville is one of the year's most anticipated events. During the celebrations, the city gets dressed up in its finery (men tend to wear suits and women tend to wear traditional flamenco dresses), and there is a notable excitement in the air. Locals and tourists alike enjoy the music, food, and incredible atmosphere.
The Feria officially starts on a Monday night, with the 'Noche del Pescaíto', where fish is generally eaten for dinner and then everyone heads to the Feria's main gateway to watch the switch-on of the lights. Once the lights are on, the party really gets started! You'll see traditional flamenco dancing, horse and carts parading the city and there are even fairground rides for the kids (and big kids!).
The Feria of Seville is very similar to ferias that take place in other Spanish cities, such as Cordoba and Malaga, although it is a far larger event. It is also more private as the 'casetas', which are marquee-like bars where the drinking and dancing take place, normally belong to groups of families and friends and cannot be accessed by the general public. Having said that, there are some public 'casetas' so everyone can enjoy the festivities.
The Feria is also the perfect time to go to a bullfight. Whether you're a bullfighting connoisseur or you've never been before, during the Feria the Maestranza Bullring welcomes renowned bullfighters for some of the season's most anticipated fights.
Origins of the Feria
The Feria dates back to an agricultural and livestock festivity in 1847, which brought cattle farmers to the city with their animals. As time went by, the old stables were turned into the 'casetas' full of light, music and colour.
The Feria of Seville is the ideal opportunity to enjoy Seville's most typical dishes in a festive, traditional setting. The portions of fried fish in paper cones and papas aliñás (a type of potato salad) are the most common dishes, that are both washed down with a typical 'rebujito' (a mixture of manzanilla sherry and lemonade). In fact, this drink is so popular, that over a million and a half bottles of manzanilla sherry are drunk each year.
Feria of Seville 2020
In 2020, the Feria of Seville will take place from 28th April to 3rd May. If you want to visit the city at this busy time, be aware that hotel prices increase significantly, but even so, it is worth it to enjoy this world-famous event.