The Junta de Extremadura has edited the list of the main festivities of the region.
Colourful festivities take place all year round in practically all towns of Extremadura. The website at www.turismoextremadura.com indicates “38 popular festivities of regional interest” which enjoy widespread popularity, like the Feria de la Cereza (cherry) in the Jerte Valley among Japanese visitors; or the Cheese Fair of the Feria del Queso (around 1st of May) on the Plaza Mayor of Trujillo.
Other celebrations of Trujillo have acquired fame for the enjoyment by young and old of the female gender to don their traditional dresses. (Men carry a red scarf). Music is produced by local bands of trumpetists, pipers and drummers.
The main “Fiesta Patronal de Trujillo” (end of August, lasts ten days), is inaugurated by the solemn celebration of the descent of the venerated statue of the Virgen de la Victoria carried from her niche in the castle wall of Trujillo by city-guild members to the San Martin Church on the main Plaza. From then on, a dense mixture of events suceed each other in a frenzy of religious celebrations, sports and musical competions, dance gatherings, horse carriage events, display of thorughbred horses, bullring- “soft” confrontations (for different categories of juveniles, adolescents, and women only), auctions of presents to the Virgen de la Victoria, medieval meals, and symbolic homages by the local Guilds.
When the party is over, an enthused population gathers at dusk on the Plaza Mayor in a rare moment of poignant silence. As soon as the Virgin’s statue is loaded on the bearers’ shoulders, the multitude entones the glorious “Trujillo-Salve” accompanying her return to the Castle’s niche above the town. Some hours later, the “Verbena” reaches its peak in the alcoves of the winding streets.
A more classic atmosphere inspires the Trujillo Music Festival
Every July the city of Trujillo transforms into an international platform for the finest classical musicians in the world. The enchanting patio of El Palacio de los Duques de San Carlos becomes the stage for three exceptional evenings of classical music in a unique and stunning venue situated at the heart of this historic town. The International Music Festival of the City of Trujillo is hosted by one of the UK’s most prestigious ensembles, the Soloists of London – eleven hand-picked string players from the world’s greatest professional orchestras.”
Trujillo celebrates the end of Carnival like most Extremadura towns with the traditional “Burial of the Sardines” on Ash Wednesday. The odd parading of a coffin with the corpse of a huge sardine, surrounded by a whaling multitude in local dress, symbolizes -but the origins of the feast are obscure- the end of bacchanal enjoyments and the beginning of Lent. The folkloric event finishes with a massive barbecue of roasted sardines, flavoured with 7 kgs of sweet “pestiños”(honey-coated fritter).
But Trujillo’s famed “Chiviri” festivities put an end to Easter mourning. The Plaza Mayor is packed with locals in folkloric dress.