Surprise Correfoc - Imagine you've just arrived in Valencia for the first time. It was a long train ride, and it's late at night. As you leave the train station, you walk straight into a Correfoc.
The festivities for el Carmen and Magdalena last for over two weeks, and the schedule is packed with religious processions, cultural events, concerts, food, partying, and of course FIREWORKS! We arrived on June 14th, midway through the festival
On the calendar, we had the Buck Creek Boom Fireworks in Springfield, set off on July 3rd. And then, for the 4th, we were invited to a friend's dairy farm, where we'd be able to shoot off our own fireworks, and watch the show put on by the nearby town of West Mansfield.
During our time living in Valencia, we've seen many insane mascletàs, but Ricasa's vertical mascletà set up for Benissa's annual Puríssima Xiqueta festival was a different level.
With this post, we're going to wrap up Fallas 2022. After a couple misfires (2020's truncated festival due to Covid-19, and 2021's mini-version in the autumn), the city had been primed for a glorious celebration in 2022. But it wasn't to be. The worst rains in the history of Fallas plagued the city, along with heavy winds and cold temperatures.
March 19th is traditionally the last day of Fallas. The festival has been building momentum for weeks, and you could describe the 19th as its climax. After the final 2pm mascletà at the Plaza del Ayuntamiento, many Fallas commissions shoot off their own street mascletàs, causing the entire city to vibrate, with all the fireworks going off all over the place.
The Ofrendà is yet another act during Fallas which depends on good weather. This year, even up to the beginning of the parades on the 17th, nobody was certain if they'd happen or not. The weather forecasts were predicting rain and winds, but the organizers decided to go ahead and push through.
Come along with us to admire the Fallas figures of 2022, which we encountered during the course of a couple marathon walks through the city of Valencia. Usually, Fallas marks the start of spring, when normally temperatures are rising -- it's almost t-shirt weather, with the sun out and everyone in a great mood.
The process of building the Fallas figures is called La Plantà - Many visitors to Valencia's Fallas come only for the last five days of the festival, when all the figures are more or less done. To them, it's like arriving to a perfectly set table -- they haven't seen all the work which goes into these monuments, some of which require up to two weeks to put together.