As a tourist it is sometimes difficult to really get to know a city and its people. Sure you get to see all the sights and interact with the locals on a purely superficial level but do you really get to know the people, their customs, traditions and what makes them tick? More often than not the answer is no. Which is why local festivals are a great way to see the locals letting their hair down and ge a bit of an insight into their lives. The best festival to see and experience the culture of Madrid is the Fiesta de San Isidro.
Celebrated in Madrid during the month of May it combines all that which makes the capital of Spain special, music, costumes, food and bullfighting. Here are few things you can’t miss.
On the Pradera de San Isidro is where the festivities get underway. Thousands of people wearing the traditional chulapos and goyescos gather to participate in a small pilgrimage to the shrine of Saint Isidro followed by a picnic where the main aim is to have a good time eating drinking and dancing. The Pradera is on the opposite side of the river of the Atletico de Madrid football stadium.
Aside from the all the eating and dancing the other main event is the San Isidro bullfighting festival which is undoubtedly the best in all Spain. Lasting from the 9th of May until the 8th of June it attracts the biggest names in bullfighting and the most prestigious fighting bulls. Definitely not an event for the faint hearted, it won’t leave you feeling indifferent.
For more information about the San Isidro Festival contact the Madrid Tourist Board or simply take to the streets of the capital and see what you find.