San Fermin Festival (Running of the bulls)
San Fermin Festival (Running of the bulls) Pamplona Reviews
Preparation - My Experience Aug 16, 2011
Below are my own experiences, and how i made the most of it. Hope this will assist any one else who has the desire to visit the world famous event in this small town.
Running of the Bulls.
Im not going to lie, I along with many thousands of people YouTube the running of the bulls only to see the people being gored. Let it be known YES this is a dangerous event, but proper preparation and research you will have a better chance of survival.
*understand the custom of the run > it is forbidden to touch the bull on the course as well within the arena. Locals who see this will whistle (which is booing) and those locals participating in the run, will literally knock you out!!!
*understand the course - i walked the course 2/3 times.
*watch the run via a balcony (i did and it was worth it)
*YOU must wear an all white outfit throughout the festival, its the best! everyone does it.
*you must be on the course real early > i was there at 530/600. Any later you will be kicked off the course by the local police.
*dont drink,smoke or be sleepy before the event. You need to be 100%
*while your waiting for 8am to come around, buy yourself a newspaper, read about the breed that is participating in the run to kill time. But during the run, roll up the newspaper as this serves for two things. 1 to distract the bull if its new you (apparently) 2 to hit other runners of the course.
*during the duration of the run, its every man for himself!!! be weary if you fall down, or lose a shoe (which happened to me - but i ran back against traffic and got it lol) no one is going to help you.
*once in the arena, the locals let the baby bulls out to run and you can try dodging them. If you dont want to participate, just run to the barrier and watch from the sides.
San Fermin Festival
*Buy a wine puch (8 euro) anything more, your getting ripped off. Not only as a souvenir but to squirt other ppl with sangria - its accepted.
*Sangria - 1lt >2euro
*have sunnies, sun block - youll need it. take a small plastic bag for your camera when your not using, as Sangria is squirted everywhere!!!!!!!
*opening ceremony - the main town square is where its all at! but word of warning, its gets really really tight in here. Packed like sardines and ppl push each other. I myself am a large frame and hold my ground - but there were times that i thought i dont wanna die here.
*in addition to above, to put in perspective. It was soo tight, that if i lost my footing on the ground, i wouldn't have fall down - since im compacted against other bodies. So people if your a small frame you have been warned!!!
*Bull Fighting (correro del toros) > go direct to the stadium and purchase your tickets. Ignore what your tourist guide suggests get it from the stadium. dont buy from the touts >ripping you off. 28 Euro for a seat.
*word of warning > if your an animal lover like i am, the bull fight may be a little tough to watch.
*the local people are friendly, you may get one or two saying crap but these people are drunk lol so just ignore them.
*if you dont have a place to stay or you've missed your tour bus then dont worry, the BUS STATION ON THE PARK (Main station) is where people sleep for the night.
*also, every night I think there are fireworks on the park, so a bonus if your staying for the night.
*local police - arnt afraid to use physical force, just get out of their way. use common sense.
*Jumping Off Statue - made famous by drunken Australians. If your thinking of doing this. My word of warning is dont, cause ppl have injured themselves. Its not worth it. Ppl have died or seriously injured themselves (ambulance is there on standby and for good reason - always on the move)
*pickpockets - I personally haven't had any issues - best thing you can do is wear a money belt. Done ;)
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