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Where is the running of the bulls in Spain?

The encierro, or the running of the bulls, is a traditional event in Spain that has been celebrated for centuries. The most famous and largest of all these events is the San Fermin Festival in Pamplona, where thousands of people gather every year to run with the bulls. However, Pamplona is not the only city in Spain where this exciting and sometimes dangerous tradition is celebrated. In this article, we will explore other famous encierros in Spain, their history, and what makes them unique.

  1. San Fermin Festival (Pamplona)

The San Fermin Festival is the most famous and popular of all the encierros in Spain. Held annually in the city of Pamplona from July 6 to July 14, the festival attracts millions of visitors from around the world. The festival is in honor of Saint Fermin, the patron saint of Pamplona, and includes various events such as bullfights, parades, and fireworks. However, the most popular and exciting event of the festival is the encierro.

The encierro in Pamplona begins every day at 8 am, and it lasts for about three to four minutes. A total of six bulls and six steers are released from the corral and run through the narrow streets of the city, while thousands of people run alongside them. The goal of the participants is to run in front of the bulls and try to reach the bullring before them. The encierro in Pamplona is one of the most dangerous in Spain, with numerous injuries and fatalities reported every year.

  1. San Sebastian de los Reyes

The encierro of San Sebastian de los Reyes is the second-largest and most popular in Spain after Pamplona. The festival is held in the town of San Sebastian de los Reyes, which is located about 20 km north of Madrid. The festival, known as La Feria de San Sebastian, is held annually from August 25 to August 31, and it attracts thousands of visitors from around the world.

The encierro in San Sebastian de los Reyes is different from Pamplona in that it takes place at night. The event is called El Encierro de la Muerte (The Running of Death) because of the dangers involved. The event starts at midnight, and participants run through the streets of the town with six bulls and six steers. The route is 1.2 km long and is considered to be one of the most challenging and dangerous in Spain.

  1. Cuellar

The encierro in Cuellar is one of the oldest in Spain, dating back to the 13th century. The festival is held annually in the town of Cuellar, which is located in the province of Segovia, about 120 km north of Madrid. The festival is held from the last Sunday in August to the first Sunday in September, and it attracts thousands of visitors from around the world.

The encierro in Cuellar is unique in that it takes place in the countryside instead of the streets of the town. The bulls are released from a corral in the countryside, and participants run with them through the fields and meadows. The encierro in Cuellar is considered to be one of the most beautiful and traditional in Spain, with a history and tradition that spans centuries.

  1. Ciudad Rodrigo

The encierro in Ciudad Rodrigo is held annually in the town of Ciudad Rodrigo, which is located in the province of Salamanca, about 150 km west of Madrid. The festival is held from February 2 to February 8, and it is known as the Carnival of Ciudad Rodrigo. The festival is one of the oldest and most traditional in Spain, dating back to the 16th century.

The encierro in Ciudad Rodrigo is known as the Capea del Toro, and it is different from other encierros in Spain. In the Capea del Toro, there is no bullfighting, and the bulls are not killed. The bulls are released into a large arena where participants, known as capeadores, try to dodge the bulls and perform acrobatic feats. The event is more of a show than a traditional encierro, and it is popular among locals and tourists alike.

  1. Valencia

The encierro in Valencia is held annually in the city of Valencia, located on the eastern coast of Spain. The festival, known as Las Fallas, is held from March 15 to March 19, and it attracts thousands of visitors from around the world. The festival is a celebration of spring and includes various events such as fireworks, parades, and traditional dances.


The encierro in Valencia is different from other encierros in Spain because the bulls are not released on the streets. Instead, the event takes place in a bullring, and the participants run with the bulls inside the ring. The event is known as the Bous al Carrer, and it is considered to be one of the most challenging and dangerous bull runs in Spain.

  1. Villaseca de la Sagra

The encierro in Villaseca de la Sagra is held annually in the town of Villaseca de la Sagra, located in the province of Toledo, about 80 km south of Madrid. The festival is held from August 14 to August 18, and it is known as the Fiestas de Agosto. The festival is a celebration of the town's patron saint, and it includes various events such as fireworks, parades, and bullfights.


The encierro in Villaseca de la Sagra is different from other encierros in Spain because it is a women-only event. The event is known as the Encierro de Mujeres, and it is considered to be one of the most unique and exciting bull runs in Spain. The women run with the bulls through the streets of the town, and the event attracts thousands of spectators every year.


Conclusion


In conclusion, the encierros of Spain are a unique and exciting tradition that has been celebrated for centuries. While the encierro in Pamplona is the most famous and popular, there are many other encierros in Spain that are just as exciting and dangerous. Each of these events has its own history, traditions, and challenges, making them a must-see for anyone interested in Spanish culture and tradition. Whether you are a participant or a spectator, the encierros of Spain are an unforgettable experience that should not be missed.

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