Spain does not disappoint when the summer heat starts cranking up. With the summer festivities in full swing by July, the annual August Fair or “Feria” in Malaga is one that you would not want to miss. Created to celebrate the conquest of the city and its incorporation into the ancient kingdom of Castile in August 1487, the Malaga Fair is now a ten-day Andalusian street party that brings together millions of visitors from all over Spain. You don't need an invitation or a formal dress - just a fun attitude to get the most out of each of the events that take place during fair days.
The fair opens on the evening of day 1, on the beaches of La Malagueta, just a short walk from the city center of Malaga. The rituals are the same every year, starting with the traditional Pregón de la Feria - the opening speech. This is followed by an impressive firework display to color the sky and a free concert on the beach. The official ceremony usually takes place at night the next day, when the Mayor of Malaga starts off the festivities by lighting the fair lights. After that, party continues until the following week, uninterrupted.
The Feria is split into two parts every day - the daytime festivities and the nighttime party. During the day, all the festivities take place in and around the historical city center of Malaga and continue on until around 6pm. Locals and tourists head over to the decorated downtown streets to celebrate with folk music and lots of dancing. The Day Feria grounds are surrounded by restaurants featuring Malaga's gastronomy.
The Andalusian love of a good party is more apparent than ever during the nighttime parties of the Feria. As nighttime rolls on, the party migrates onto the newly popped-up fairgrounds just outside of Malaga, accessed by regular shuttle buses from the city center. Located in the heart of Cortijo de Torres, the Night Feria is characterized by the large number of rides for all ages and a more comfortable temperature, surrounded by flamenco shows and food stalls serving traditional food.
One of the most fantastic traditions of Feria De Malaga is the costumes worn by the local and some tourist women. Women wear the "traje de flamenca," more commonly known around the world as the flamenco dress. The dresses come in all colors, styles and patterns including polka dot, lace, pinstripe, floral print and are usually floor-length, body-con styles with frills and ruffles beginning at the knee, a style which allows freedom to move and dance. They are usually accessorized with delicate shawls or bright flowers.
If you happen to be planning a trip to Spain in August don't forget to line up your holiday with a visit to Malaga and join the Andalusian summer festival - Feria De Málaga!