Cordoba City - Cordoba Spring Feria

The Cordobes hats are for sale at the Malaga Fair. © Michelle Chaplow
The Cordobes hats are for sale at the Malaga Fair.

WHAT IS IT, AND WHEN AND WHERE DOES IT TAKE PLACE?

By Fiona Flores Watson.

 

Frills and smiles at the Cordoba Feria © Michelle Chaplow
Frills and smiles at the Cordoba Feria.
Cordoba Spring Feria Dates

19 May - 26 May 2018

(To be confirmed by the Town Hall) 

The Cordoba Spring Fair, or Feria de Nuestra Señora de la Salud (Our Lady of the Health), takes place during the last week of May. Its venue is the municipal fairground on the north bank of the River Guadalquivir, a few kilometres to the south-east of the city. The recinto is called El Real de Arenal, which means the sandy area. This Feria dates from 1284, as a livestock market on Pentecost Sunday.

 

It is similar to the Seville Feria, with small tents called casetas where people gather to eat, drink and dance, but much smaller - about a tenth of the size (to give you an idea, in 2010 Seville had 1047 casetas, while Cordoba had 113). Like Seville, it has a magnificent portada, or entrance, but Cordoba's remains the same every year rather than having a brand-new themed one, as in the Andalucian capital. The portada of the Cordoba Feria is vast, 140 metres wide, with a 45m-tall main central tower, two smaller ones at either end, two main arches one either side of the main tower, and a multitude of Mezquita-style red-and-white striped double arches.

The most important difference from Seville's Feria is that all the casetas (for now, anyway) have to be open to the public - in other words, anyone is free to go in and buy a drink, order a tapa, and strut their Sevillanas on the dance floor, without having to know someone personally, and have a formal (verbal) invitation. Opening hours are from about 2pm all the way through to 5am (6am at weekends).

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