A vibrant custom of Spain
One of Spain’s main distinctive symbols, as powerful as a trademark and encountered by visitors on signs and products in numerous locations across the country, is bullfighting, a sport invented in Spain and imported to Latin American countries.
It consists of intensely trained toreros enticing and eluding infuriated bulls, through brave and well controlled manoeuvres. Although legislation regulating bullfights has changed in order to avoid animal cruelty and protect toreadors, it has remained a vibrant custom all over the country and equally enjoyable to foreigners.
Today, you can watch bullfights in any part of Spain during the August fiestas, as well as on other occasions, as bullfighting season unfolds between March and October.
Nonetheless, the region of their utmost prominence is the autonomous community of Andalucía, where one of the oldest bullrings is located, in the city of Ronda, dating from the late 18th century.
A number of towns in Andalucía (which comprises more than 70 bullrings across its territory) are notable for their venues, such as Malaga, Cordoba, Jaen, Almeria and Seville, the latter being home to the one with the largest sitting capacity, known as the Real Maestranza, predating the one in Ronda by a few decades and thus being the oldest in the country.
Another setting of choice is Barcelona, where an imposing, sizeable bullring is located, referred to as the ‘’Plaza de Toros Monumental de Barcelona’’, abbreviated ‘’La Monumental’’, comprising a bullfighting museum, where tourists can get a glimpse of significant memorabilia.
Other bullrings across Spain are usually referred to by Plaza de Toros and can be found in cites such as Bilbao, Pamplona, Valencia, Madrid, Albacete and Cadiz. Structurally, bullrings are strongly evocative of Roman amphitheatres, which is yet another aspect placing them in the centre of the sporting culture, as a continuation of traditional entertainment.
Concerts, opera and theatre
Eccentric local events
Fiestas and Ferias
Places of Worship