Jerez Feria

Every year there is a week-long festival at the large park in just outside of the centre of Jerez, it is about the size of Hyde Park and for the last month they have been transforming the park into what I can only describe as Disney Land in Southern Spain.

The Feriar has lots of different themes happening, but traditionally it revolves around the probably the 4 main things Jerez is famous for, Sherry (Jerez means Sherry in Spanish), horses, flamenco and bull fighting.  It is actually known as the Horse Fair, but it has stemmed into something that now combines some horses and bull fighting during the day, flamenco and sherry at night with a funfair running as well.

The bullfighting I didn’t get to see, but it was a mixture between the kind where guys are on horses lobbing spears at the bull, and the traditional kind with matadors et al.  Apparently some of the most famous Matadors in the world turned up to the fair (their private jets were parked up on the apron) and tickets were going for over €60 a pop!  The Feria itself is actually free and this is probably what attracts so many people to it, Allie and I headed down at 5pm on Sunday to see the start-up of the Feria before it got hectic for the lights-on at 10pm (there are probably more lights than Blackpool is traditionally known for).  Unfortunately there were no horses on the Sunday and I was really gutted for Allie because I know she wanted to see them all dressed up with all the riders dressed up in traditional gear, frustratingly all of the horse displays and shows are shown around 11am Tuesday-Thursday with an open display on Friday afternoon – pretty pointless time if you ask me but I guess people love it enough to take time off to go and see it all.

Within the park there are many themed stalls, over 150 of them, all with their own wacky designs and vary from restaurants, to bars, to nightclubs.  By evening the Feria totally transforms with all of the lights on and I can’t describe really what it is like, maybe some of the photos will help to describe it…  We went to one of the evening sessions on Wednesday because ground school was the day after which meant no alcohol restrictions, of course this would mean we were very tired the next day and double periods of both Air Law and Operations would surely not help.  There was plenty of beer, sherry, mojito and some dodgy caramel shots consumed as well as some rides on some extreme rides built in about 2 days by Spanish Gypsies (have used a capital ‘G’ after Gypsies took out a recent court case demanding that a capital be used for their status) – perfectly safe!

Highlights of the evening were Phil and Andre dancing with some locals on 5ft high bar table and seemingly setting a trend for the rest of the evening whereby whenever some random bloke got up on the table, all the women started clawing off his clothes like cats.

The evening ended by heading back to the fair at about 2am and purchasing Churos with chocolate sauce, they are supposed to be like a giant long donut that look like they are squeezed out of an ice cream machine.  However without the chocolate sauce or sugar, they most definitely tasted like fish batter and that was after a few drinks!

Some of the pictures have been borrowed courtesy of Dr Majeed, man of eternal questions off of Lebanon.

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Josh, Tom, Phil and Andre hit a silly ride

~ by globalste on May 17, 2011.

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