The fair(est) of them all
Possibly one of Spain’s most beautiful city’s, Seville, literally blossoms in April when the townspeople celebrate the arrival of spring with Fería de Abril or as we English-speaking folk people call it, the Seville April Fair. The sweet smell of orange blossoms is everywhere and the excitement of this special celebration is tangible.
In 2019 the festival runs from 7th May until 12th, and it can only be described as a true Spanish fiesta. You will wintness food, music, bullfights, and flamenco. Each day, for the duration of the fair, starts off with a parade called ‘Paseo de Caballos’ and in the evening bullfights happen at the La Real Maestranza.
More into food festivals? The National Cheese Fair in Trujillo is your event.
About the Seville April Fair
The Seville Fair dates all the way back to the mid-19th-century, starting out as a livestock fair. As soon as the casetas (fair tents) appeared the fair became the festive soiree it is today.
Traditional Spanish Dress
Women don the traditional dress, traje de gitana (gypsey dress), which is characterized by polka dots and ruffles, or volantes, and magnificent colors.
Seville Setting The Spring Fashion Trends
Forget Milan, New York, and Paris; because it’s the first festival of the year, Seville is the first city to show the new fashions, and a lot of women have more than one dress for the fair, knowing the following year there’ll be a new style.
Some fashion at the Seville April Fair. By RECURSOS FERIA DE SEVILLA 2017_37.jpg via flickr.com
As a visitor, you’re not expected to own one of these dresses, which are quite expensive. Instead, you can accessorize with a pretty flower in your hair, or an ornate comb will do. Some women wear large earrings to go with the flamenco fair.
Make sure you wear shoes that you don’t mind getting dirty, or you can clean easily as the fairgrounds are covered in dirt.
Seville Fair Parade
Besides the fashion, highlights of the Seville April Fair include the midday parade with carriages and riders (paseo de caballos). The carriages transport people to the bullring La Maestranza where the best bullfights of the season take place. A word of warning for those who don’t like bullfights, stay away from this area.
The traditional carriage with the Sevillian kids. By Julie Raccuglia via flickr.com
Seville Fair With Kids
There are parades of flower-decked horse-drawn carriage throughout the day as well as entertainment for the kids at Calle del Infierno – which means Street of Hell (we’re not sure we want to know why) – with merry-go-rounds and nausea-inducing ‘hell’ rides.
Seville Fair At Night
When the sun goes down the real partying starts and the old cliché ‘sleep when you’re dead’ certainly rings true as all-nighters eat, drink and dance the night away.
The private casetas are by invite only, however, there a few that are open to the rest of us plebs, but rest assured, there’s more than enough to do and see, from parades and processions to fireworks and equestrian events.
Just walking around the fair is an adventure for your senses: the sights, sounds, and smells; every part of you comes alive. It’s pretty much an Instagramer or Snapchatter’s dream.
So Why Seville April Fair?
Spaniards are renowned for their ‘joie de vivre’ and while the fair might be aimed more at the locals, it’s definitely an opportunity for visitors to immerse themselves in the festivities. It’s an assault on all your senses.
While we don’t have exact times for the many events throughout the day there will be tourist information areas. If you’re looking for peace and solitude, then we strongly suggest avoiding this one.