Saying that Spain has great fireworks is an understatement. In fact, Valencia’s firework industry is recognised worldwide as one of the leading in the field.
You can certainly experience that during the Fallas!
During this week of fiestas and sometimes even weeks before, around 14:00 there is the so called “Mascletà”.
This means that the main square or street is filled with endless lines with fire crackers. (Plaza del Ayuntamiento in the case of Valencia city)
This succession of explosions can last more than 10 minutes and is considered a
form of art.
Of course at night there are also firework displays in the sky. March 18th is “La Nit del Foc”, the night of fire on which on of the greatest fireworks shows on earth is held.
The former river that crosses the city is filled with state of the art fireworks. The show seems endless and magical.
Those few professionals that get the honourable chance to make a display in Valencia are considered heroes.
They often offer previews of their new products and techniques like new forms, patterns and colours. Smaller fireworks are sold to the public through small shops or stands. You will see many children playing in the streets with fire and fireworks.
Remember that fireworks might be experienced as unpleasant if you are scared easy or travel with very small children or pets.
Saying that Spain has great fireworks is an understatement. In fact, the professional firework industry is recognised worldwide as one of the leading in the field.
You will encounter it in some form or another in all the Spanish fiestas. It can be a classic display in the sky at night, just like in other parts of the world but most of the times; the art of playing with fire is taken to extremes.
Therefore Spanish fire artists are considered heroes and travel to create state of the art pyrotechnic shows all around the world.
If you love sparks and the smell of burnt gunpowder Spain is your country!
Despertá, firecrackers in the early morning
So you partied all night during the fiestas. You get home in the early morning and go to sleep. But just for a couple of hours… Because around 08:00 in the morning, the party starts all over again with the ` “Despertá”, the awakening.
It’s not really a big deal, just a couple of guy’s parade trough town with music and firecrackers. But believe me, if this gang comes by your street, you will definitely notice it, no matter how far you went into dreamland.
Now, for some people the despertá may be the ending of a night of fiesta but for the majority of us, eight in the morning is already hangover time. Thank god that the rest of the significant events take place in the afternoon…
Mascletá, fire cracker mayhem
If you encounter a street or a square filled with ropes with firecrackers hanging from them, you are in for a treat. You are about to witness a Mascletá.
It’s basically a fast succession of hundreds of explosions that can take up to 15 minutes.
You can literally feel the earth shake beneath your feet and the air pressing your body. Definitely the noisiest event that you will ever experience.
You can find Mascletá in the Region of Valencia during the Fallas and in the province of Alicante during the bonfire celebrations. The show starts somewhere between 13:00 and 14:00 in the afternoon.
The Biggest and most impressive mascletá take place on the main square in Valencia City during the week of Fallas.
Tip: The local’s advice is not to cover your ears in any way, but to open your mouth instead so that the noise can circulate.(?)
Firework displays at night
If you visit a Spanish fiesta, you can be sure that you will be treated to at least one spectacular firework display in the night sky.
Also be prepared for some surprises like displays in the Mediterranean Sea using boats or on a castle on the hills. Especially the fiestas in the region of Valencia are known for their artists of fire.
One of the biggest fireworks takes place in the city of Valencia during the Nit del Foc, the night of fire. You can expect long shows with colours and forms that you haven’t seen before.
Is there a better way to end a vacation day?
Correfocs, firework spectacles
If the above weren’t already enough, the Valencianos have created a complete interactive fireworks experience that they call “Correfocs”, (fire-running).
In the region of Cataluña they are called “El ball de diables”
These insane events take place in many Spanish towns during the Fiesta Mayor or Fiesta Patronal, always after midnight.
The streets are rigged with fireworks as if they were to shoot the end sequence of an action movie. The participating crowd prepares as if they were going to war.
The master pyrotechnician lights his firing stick and the show can begin…
As a spectator you are invited to step right into to the action and dance among the sparks, but be sure that you are not wearing any extremely flammable clothes!
From now on, if you don’t run, you will get burnt.
The people that create Correfocs can be seen as a combination between pyrotechnicians and performers.
They create installations with fire fountains and dressed up in fire protective costumes; they dance and tease the crowd.
The Correfocs often ends on a square where the grand finale takes place on a small stage.
This is something to see, even if you do not like fireworks. Serious injuries rarely happen and the event is still impressive and safe from a distance.
On tip: Always watch your back… a lunatic performer may suddenly pop-up behind you with a spinning umbrella of sparks in his hands.
Can you imagine such a crazy spectacle any where else in the world? Surely this is only possible in Spain! Highly recommended event!
Drunk feet seekers
The street or square is prepared for a feet-seeker orgy. Windows are protected with timber. The Red Cross is standing by.
A bunch of man with hardly any protection, start to ignite huge amounts of “Borrachos” and stay around to play with them. Basically a more barbaric form of the Correfocs.
These fireworks are called ‘drunk’ because they fly screaming around on ground level for a while and then explode. Piles of them are lighted at the time.
These little rockets seem to fly uncontrolled but participants claim that they actually sense movement and will not follow you if you don’t run. (!?)
When you plan your vacation, remember that fireworks might be experienced as unpleasant if you are scared easy or travel with very small children or pets.Consumer fireworks are available through small shops or stands. During fiestas, you will see many children playing with fire crackers in the streets.
Never engage these kinds of events from the start, stay at a distance if you think that a fireworks event may be about to start. See how it works and then decide to come closer or stay away. In all cases you should wear non-flammable clothes and don’t mind if it gets ruined.
Last, but not least: Remember that the above spectacles and displays are created and supervised by experienced professionals!
Do NOT try this at home! You should always play with fire at someone else’s home!