Mores and Cristians Bocairent

moors_cristons_bocairent.gif From the 1st to the 5th of February the medieval town of Bocairent transforms from its usually sleepy self into an explosion of colour, music and dancing. The Moors and Christian Fiesta of this Valencian town is one not to be missed. Bocairent pays homage to their Patron Saint Blas with monthly mass and with one of the biggest celebrations of the year, the Moors and Christians fiesta.

On the first night the Waking marks the beginning of the fiesta - thousands of people and the nine fiesta fraternities take part in a candle light procession through the town.

The second day is one of the most spectacular with the entry of the Christian and Moorish Armies into the town. Over 2000 thousand people take part in this parade dressed in colourful costumes. The armies, lead by their respective Captains then make their way to the Church of Our Lady of Assumption to pay their respects to the Patron Saint.

The most solemn and religious day of the fiestas is the third day. An effigy of Saint Blas is carried through the streets to the Town Hall Square, crowds gather chanting 'Vitol al Patro St. Blai'. The procession then enters the Church where the Saints Hymn is sung. The evening ends with a fireworks

The fourth day of celebrations is the day of battle. The Moors and Christians both show their power with gunfire. The Christians take back their castle and set fire to a farcical character, 'mahoma' who is thrown from the castle. The Moors extinguish the flames and carry out a “burial” of 'mahoma'.

The Moorish Ambassador is converted to Christianity on the 5th at Christ on Mount Cavalry in Bocairent. On the 6th day a Thanksgiving Mass is held to honour Saint Blas. A huge firework display marks the end of the celebrations

This really is one of the most exciting and colourful fiestas of the year and should not be missed.

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