VALENCIA: Summer food fights, festivals and candle-lit tributes

Temperatures have hit the roof and the whole city is feeling it, but that doesn’t mean the fun is over for summer. We’re switching from hiking weekends to beachfront vibes, midday meriendas to breezy al fresco evenings, and celebrating everything that makes Valencia unique this August. 

Get ready for the famous Tomatina 

One of the most famous traditional festivals in Spain, La Tomatina returns to Buñol on August 30. The 9,000-strong population of the sleepy Valencian town more than doubles in the days leading up to the festival, with tickets now limited to 20,000. 

Whether it was the lawless aftermath of a food truck spillage, a townspeople attack on the councilmen or a practical joke among friends, the origins of this festival have been lost to time. All that’s known, is that the tomato festival in Valencia’s Buñol started in the mid-Forties, and now brings the village together every summer.

But when the over-ripe tomato battle begins – traditionally with the retrieval of a coveted ham from the top of a greased-up pole and water cannons firing – it’s every person for themselves.

Best tunes by candlelight

While your days might be best spent making the most of the breeze at the beach lounging by one of the many public pools, the cooler evenings allow us to come together to enjoy everything this city has to offer. 

Open-air candlelight concerts in Valencia are the perfect way to experience a magical evening, whether that’s kicking back to the summer vibes of Abba in Teatro La Plazeta or bringing all the family for a soundtrack serenade in the Ateneo Mercantil.

From tributes to Coldplay and Queen and homages to Ludovico Einaudi and Vivaldi’s Four Seasons, August’s line-up has something for everyone. And with tickets starting from 15€ (available at feverup.com), there’s no excuse for missing out. 

Beats on the beach in Cullera

Offering a completely different vibe, six spectacular stages have been set up in the coastal haven of Cullera, promising three days of EDM, house and techno this weekend. 

From this Friday to Sunday, the world-class line-up includes likes of David Guetta, Amelie Lens and Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike. who will bring their buzzing atmosphere to the Valencia beach festival for the Medusa 2023: Age of Times.  

If you want to join the 300,000 excited festival goers descending on the town famed for its blissful beaches and charming lighthouse, the good news is that there are still some tickets available for one of the best music festivals in Valencia. Book now and you could be partying by the beach tomorrow. 

Rhythmic Gymnastics takes over the Valencia Fair 

Coming to the Feria Valencia exhibition space from August 23 to 28, is the world rhythmic gymnastics championship 2023. With a capacity of 6,800 spectators, this alternate venue provides the perfect setting for the 40th edition of the competition. 

And with the winners receiving invitations for the Paris Games of 2024, the atmosphere promises to be electric. Whether your children have caught the bug for hoops and ribbons or you’re nostalgic for a childhood well spent, this competition is the perfect opportunity to get everyone inspired this summer.

You can still pick up tickets online at rgvalecia2023.es or at the Box Office from August 23. It’s the biggest event of the year for fans of Rhythmic Gymnastics, so be sure to get there early!

DON’T MISS: The Unesco-listed La Cordá de Paterna, one of the region’s best pyrotechnical displays, takes place in Paterna on the final Sunday of August.

DATE FOR THE DIARY: The Kyiv City Ballet brings Swan Lake to the Olympia Theatre from August 7 to 10, with tickets still available. 

TOP TIP/DID YOU KNOW: You can try the best hamburger in Spain at Solmarket festival, a gastronomical festival held in El Puig from July 29 to August 20. 

Looking for Valencia city break ideas for summer, great restaurants and experiences? Check Valencia Style for inspiration.

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