la tomatina

Valencia Travel Blog

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It all started many years ago in a little town called Bunol,just outside Valencia, when two market traders fell out & started throwing tomatoes at eachother. It became an annual event to what is now essentially the biggest tomato fight in the world! Thousands of people from around the world descend upon the town that nomally has a population of approximately 900.In the middle of the square there is a greasy flag pole, the lorries with the tomatoes are not aloud in until someone climbs the pole & pulls down the flag (if that happens to be you, your the hero of the festival & your treated accordingly!).Then the fun begins,lorry after lorry drives through sounding their horns, tipping mushy tomatoes untill you are knee deep! i'm not kidding you are knee deep!The locals are all out on their balconies throwing water over the crowds, all compeating for the loudest cheer! People & tomatoes alike spilling out in to the side streets,it is absolute chaos! There was 28 of us that went(none of us got the flag),we arrived the night before in Valencia,next morning 3 of the group didn't make it (try telling 28 guy's not to drink to much on the first night in spain!) So for those of you that do get to bunol, make sure you take a water proof camera(you don't want tomato pips in the gubbins of your best nikon!)..If you travel from Valencia to Bunol by train (on the way there is ok but on the way back smell is almost unbearable,most people had thrown their tops in the bin before they even got to the train to go back to Valencia,only to find out the guards won't let anyone on board without one...conviniantly though they will sell you a t'shirt!) from valencia you have to get the train quite early so it might be an idea to get the tickets the night before to save queing. We stayed in the Melia Plaza hotel.It has a hot tub on the roof overlooking the city,it was reasonably priced,easy walking distance to the station(on the same road even!), and close to a big square were they hold a festival on the following fri night, just off the square there are some great little bars & clubs. Also as a bonus there will be a f1 gp provisonaly on the sunday before if your in to that, but if not Valencia is a stunning city anyway! Hope this helps. have fun!
Posted on: Jul 15, 2007
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photo by: spocklogic