Dates, Maps, What to expect?
Dates, Maps, What to expect?
Mahon has several Fiestas throught out the year. The summer fiesta takes place in early September ( 6 to 9 September ) and is not an event put on just for tourists, is genuine different and much loved by the islanders and visitors alike. The Menorcans love their festivals and especially the chance to show off their stunning native horses. The most eagerly awaited moments are the "Cargols", when riders circle specific points along the parade route and especially the "Jaleos", where riders bring their horse onto their rear legs.
Each town has it's own flavour and scale but generally all follow the same pattern and will be ceremonial and visual - and always with local traditional riders showing off their horsemanship skills on the famous Menorcan horses with parades and Jaleo's.
Menorcans love to celebrate and there will be lot's of music and alcohol consumed eg Pomada ( with good humour and behaviour ) as well as events organised for residents.
There may well be a fun fair and various live music acts on stage. Two riders will 'race' each other along a city street.
On the last night there is usually a spectacular firework display at midnight ( serious fireworks! )
Restaurants in Mahon centre stop serving food and set up street bars selling beer and pomada with party music. To eat visit the stalls that serve traditional fiesta snacks and other fast foods.
It's all free of charge.
No Fiesta is complete without daytime and nightime Jaleos. This is where to excitable music riders will rear up their mounts and walk on horseback through the crowds as the brave try to 'touch the heart' of the horse for good luck. To health and safety worriers this looks a nightmare but we have never seen an accident in many,many years.
Check out the videos below
Smaller children can enjoy many parts of a Fiesta but the usual common sense applies with any large boisterous crowds. Fire crackers will be set off occasionally. The fireworks can be very loud, but superb ( bring ear plugs for children ).
Jaleos at Mahon Fiesta take place in a tight space not suitable for smaller children or less able bodied people. Jaleos will be performed in the parades at certain points - tip watch/listen to the crowds and you will soon find out these spots.
Tip Most Horses and riders rest up in the nearby side streets where children can get close to the horses and riders welcome the attention and photos.
This year's agenda is often on the council website,but the basic format does not change significantly from year to year. The below guide is typical to help you plan.
16:00 Procession with Giants and band through the streets
16:30 Horses and Riders start to gather
20:30 First Jaleo on Plaza de la Constitución ( area by Cathedral and Town Hall )
00:30 Open air party at Placa del Carmen with live music and DJ
08:00 'Colcada' - Horses and Riders parade in City
09:00 Giants parade
12:30 Second Jaleo Plaza de la Constitución ( area by Cathedral and Town Hall )
18:00 Riders gather at Plaza de la Constitución to goto to street races
19:00 Street Races - Carrer Cos de Gràcia
20:30 'Colcada' - Horses and Riders parade in City
00:00 Open air party Placa del Carmen/ Placa Espana with live music and DJ
Various events during day including swimming across Mahon harbour
00:00 Fireworks over the harbour ( goto harbour area to view )
Some of our favourites ...If you are a health and safety person look away now
Fiestas should be enjoyed for the party and the last night Fireworks. During Fiesta season there is a special "jaleo bus" to take revelers to and from the Fiestas at night ( more ) . Look out for timetables at bus stops and published in local guides and at tourist offices.
Remember your are a guest - be respectfull of religious and ceremonial elements, this is not a tourist event!
Visiting the Fiesta is not so difficult and gives you a LOT more freedom than holiday rep organised excursions.
comming soon- companies that will organise trips from your holiday resort to Mahon Fiesta