29 April 2019
Every year people from all over the world gather in Pamplona for the annual bull run also known as the festival of San Fermin. This event takes place during the second week of July and is one of Spain’s biggest traditions.
During this week, every morning at the same time, around 2000 people participate in a bull run or encierro. The course is about 875m long but you’re never able to cover the entire course, due to several factors: the distance, all the other runners and of course the enormous speed of the bulls. This event is completely free, and everybody who’s 18 years or older can participate, but there are some rules that you need to respect (not being drunk for example). Normally a run takes about 2 to 3 minutes from the start on the slope of Santo Domingo to the bullring. When the runners arrive in the bullring they’re welcomed by deafening applause and cheers from the supporters sitting in the arena, waiting for the bulls and runners to arrive.
After the bulls have arrived in the ring, they fire up a rocket to let the people in the streets know that the bulls have arrived and that the course can be removed so that people can walk around town again. That’s also when people start eating, drinking and dancing to celebrate San Fermin.
In the afternoon the town organizes bull fights in which the 6 bulls that were running in the morning are killed (needles to say this has provoked organizations like PETA). The meat of the bulls is then cooked in a classic stew and served to the people of the festival. To be able to meet the enormous demand of food, the city buys bulls from surrounding towns and cities so that they can keep serving delicious txuletas to everybody.
After having a delicious meal, most of the people just party all night, until the sun rises again, and 2000 men are yet again ready to take part in one of the world’s craziest events.
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