A week after the festivities of Feria de Abril in my home away from home in Seville, Spain, and I am so excited to finally tell y’all all about the special festival in my favorite city. Basically, Feria is celebrated two weeks after Semana Santa, aka Holy Week, which means the dates change every year. This year, it was April 15th to April 21st. It is a week of dancing, drinking, dressing up, eating, socializing and celebrating being a Sevillana.
The fair takes place at “Real de la Feria” at Los Remedios, which is right next to the river and luckily super close to where I live with my host family for my study abroad program. This area also includes Spain’s amusement park, “Calle de Infierno” or Hell Street. The streets are lined with over 1,000 “casetas” or tents that are mostly privately owned by Spanish families, businesses, clubs and political groups. However, there are a few that are open to the public (aka tourists like me are still welcome). Each caesta is complete with a bar, tapas and of course, music.
When you step foot at Real de la Feria, it feels like you took a step back in time. Women are wearing beautiful flamenco dresses and men wear traditional suits. The streets are lined with horses and carriages with lights twinkling above them. The traditional music and dance called “Sevillanos” are going on nonstop. It is an incredible moment to witness and just take in if you have never seen it before.
The entrance to the fair is marked by a beautiful arch. At night, the arch is lit up and can be seen from miles away. It is a popular place for women and men to take pictures with their family and friends in their beautiful, traditional attire for Feria.
If you want to take a break from the casetas, you can walk over to the amusement park and enjoy rides, games, more food and of course more drinks. It is like an American fair, but everyone is dressed up and there is less of an emphasis on greasy fried foods that probably should not be fried (welcome to America).
The typical drink of Feria is rebujitos. Rebujitos are super common and you will catch almost every adult with a pitcher of this typical drink in their hands while walking around the casetas and the amusement park. They are made of a bottle of Sherry and then it is topped off with Sprite. This sweet drink is easy to go down, so make sure to stay respectful and not make a fool of yourself – especially if you are a tourist.
The end of Feria is marked with a beautiful fireworks show over Los Remedios that can be seen from all over the city. I was sad to see the festival come to an end, but I was so glad I got to experience this during my time in Seville. Plus, who does not love a week off from school thanks to this holiday? Make sure you check out this special festival if you ever come to Seville in April.
Have you ever been to Feria de Abril in Seville or in another Spanish city? Let me know in the comments below; I would love to hear about your experiences.