La Tomatina of Buñol, 28 August 2019
Buñol is a peaceful municipality in the province of Valencia where it is good to live. But every year, on the last Wednesday of August, the madness of tomato invades the streets of the city.
It was in 1945 that this more than surprising tradition was born. Since then, the city of Buñol has transformed for a day into a brief but intense battle scene. The participants engage in a real fight, armed... with ripe tomatoes!
The festival has its origins in a rush that took place during the festivities of the patron saint. Young people then entered the occasional parade and one of the participants ended up falling beside a first man. As a result of anger, he started throwing what was within his reach, so they were vegetables. This was followed by a general battle between the inhabitants. In the following years, the youngest returned with tomatoes to recreate this scene, which they managed to do successfully. That's how Tomatina was born.
The principle of the Tomatina de Buñol is very simple. It is enough to throw as many tomatoes as possible on all the people who cross your way. Every year, thousands of people are engaged in this ritual that has become famous all over the world. In a single hour, no less than 140 tons of tomatoes will turn into real projectiles. Notice to fans of staggered fights, stains and tomatoes! !
However, the festivities are strictly framed by safety rules issued by the organizers themselves. Thus, sharp objects are prescribed from the places of battle, as is it forbidden to tear the clothes of other participants. Finally, when the detonation is heard, the battle must cease without delay.
La Tomatina has gained great popularity over time and now gathers around 22,000 fighters every year. Some people do not hesitate to travel, sometimes from far away, in order to participate in this crazy party. The battle is broadcast, at least in part, by more than 100 media outlets from all over the world: Europe, the United States, Australia, Turkey, Malaysia...
Because of the influx generated by this giant tomato fight, it is imperative to obtain an entrance ticket to participate. It is possible to buy it for about 10 euros. The sale starts a few weeks before the official date of the Tomatina. The amount collected is then partly donated to an Indian NGO whose mission is to help women who are threatened with exclusion.
If you want to take part in this tomato fight, remember to protect your eyes from the aggressions of tomato juice and wear practical clothes and shoes to which you are not too attached