San José (Saint Joseph), the patron saint of carpenters, is the official focus for the festival.
It all started back in the Middle Ages when carpenters used to hang up planks of wood called ‘parots’ in the winter to support their candles while they were working. At the onset of spring these pieces of wood would be discarded along with any other rubbish that they had and burned as a way of celebrating the end of dark winter working days. After a while they began to put clothing on the ‘parot’ and then started to try to make it identifiable with a well-known local personality. These became the forerunners of the contemporary ‘ninots’, the enormous cardboard, wooden, polyurethane, Styrofoam, cork, plaster and papier maché figures of today. The authorities later decided to link the burning of the ‘parots’ with Saint Joseph’s Day to try to stop it getting out of control!.
Nowadays it is a big festival in Valencia city and towns in the Valencian community and takes place over several days every year in March. Neighbourhood groups spend months raising money and creating impressive models that they proudly display for a while until the last day when they are burnt! There are about 750 such models in the whole region. In Valencia city it is an important tourist event and is like one big street party that lasts for days. There are daytime fireworks ‘mascetas’ which have to be heard to be believed – it sounds like a war zone, and even though it seems dangerous to the observer, people light individual fireworks like bangers in the streets.It is a very noisy time.
Benidorm of course being a seriously festive town, also celebrates these days with great enthusiasm.
Satire is used these days to depict characters familiar to the public. Political, Disney and celebrities are all included. Something similar occurs in the UK in a town called Lewes in Sussex on bonfire night in November.
The Fallas are burnt for the bad to pass to the good, to the spring!
Terminology to help you enjoy the Fallas?
Falla: Although this fiesta is called Fallas, the falla is the name of the singular effigy/statue.
Plantà: is the name given to the act of assembling and raising the effigy/statue of the falla.
Ninot: name given to the figure of satire or mocking, that a human character represented in a falla is called.
Cridà: this is a call made by the authorities and the falleros / to the citizens and visitors, so that they go out to celebrate the fiesta of the Fallas.
Mascletà: do not confuse it with fireworks, the mascletà is one of the most important acts of Fallas. The word comes from masclets, which are a type of firecrackers with a very loud sound capacity.
Despertà: the falleros and falleras walk through the streets of the towns and city at 8 in the morning, accompanied by a band, while throwing firecrackers and wake up the neighbours so that they take to the streets to celebrate the fiestas.
Ofrena: In all the municipalities the flower offering is celebrated, where the falleros and other citizens dressed in typical traditional costumes will give gifts to their patron saint.
Nit del Foc: it is the night in which the longest fireworks display of all the Fallas can be watched, it takes place in the evening/night before San José (Saint Joseph’s day).
Cremà: this act is the most significant of all and with which the festivities end. It is the late night/early hours of the morning of the 19th, when the beautiful monuments are burned.
2019 Programme For The Benidorm Fallas
FRIDAY 15 MARCH
“PLANTÁ” of the falleros monuments:
Falla Benidorm Center: C / Alcalde José Such Ortega (next to Elche Park).
Falla Els Tolls: C / Tomás Ortuño.
Falla Rincon de Loix: Av. Ametlla de Mar (opposite Burguer King)
SUNDAY 17 MARCH
10:15am Entrance of the music band “L’Illa de Benidorm”, through the streets of the
Falla “Rincon de Loix”.
Then, parades from the Falla “Rincón de Loix” to the Falla “Benidorm Centro”,
from where both will leave (about 12:30 h.), in pasacalle, to visit the Falla “El Tolls”.
12:00 noon Pasacalle de la Falla “Els Tolls” for its neighborhood.
5:00 pm Parade from Falla “Els Tolls” to Falla “Benidorm Centro” and, from there
(around 6:00 p.m.), the two will leave until the Falla “Rincón de Loix”.
5:30pm Pasacalle de la Falla “Rincón de Loix” for its neighborhood.
11:00pm Night parade of the Falla “Benidorm Centro”, through the streets of the neighborhood.
MONDAY 18 MARCH
08:00 am DESPERTÀ, in charge of the Commission of the “Els Tolls” and the “Rincón de
Loix “, through the streets of their respective neighborhoods.
12:00 noon Pasacalle de la Falla “Rincón de Loix” through the streets of its neighborhood and street parade Falla “Els Tolls”, for its neighborhood.
12:30 pm Pasacalle de la Falla “Benidorm Center” for its neighborhood.
6:00 pm OFFERING OF FLOWERS to the Virgen del Sufragio and to San Jaime, organized by the
Central Board Fallera, in charge of the different Fallas, which will concentrate on the confluence
of Av. Mediterráneo with Av. Europa.
ITINERARY: Av. Mediterráneo, Av. Bilbao, Av. Alcoy, Av. Martínez Alejos, Plaza de la Cruz,
Alameda del Mayor D. Pedro Zaragoza, C / Mayor and Plaza de San Jaime.
At the end of the offering, a CASTLE OF ARTIFICIAL FIRES will be shot.
11:00 pm Night parade of the Falla “Benidorm Centro”, through the streets of the neighborhood.
TUESDAY 19 MARCH – FESTIVIDAD DE SAN JOSÉ
08:00-08:30 am DESPERTÀ a cargo de las diferentes Comisiones Falleras, por las calles de
sus respectivos barrios.
11:00 am Falla Els Tolls. Misa en honor a San José en la Iglesia del Buen Pastor.
12:00 noon Falla Rincón de Loix Misa en honor a San José en la Iglesia de Ntra. Sra. del Mar.
1.00 pm Falla “Benidorm Centro”. Misa en honor a San José en la Iglesia de San Jaime y
2.00 pm GRANDIOSA MASCLETÁ de la Falla “Benidorm Centro” (C/ Alcalde José Such
Ortega), de la Falla “Els Tolls” (C/ Tomás Ortuño) y de la Falla “Rincón de Loix” (Av.
6:30 pm GRANDIOSO DESFILE DE CARROZAS con la participación de las tres Fallas.
ITINERARIO: C/ Marqués de Comillas, C/ Almendros, C/ Marte, C/ Venus, C/ Ruzafa, Av.
Martínez Alejos y Av. Alcoy.
11.00 pm “CREMÁ” de las Fallas Infantiles: Benidorm Centro, Els Tolls y Rincón de L´Oix.
00:00 midnight “CREMÁ” de la Falla Mayor Rincón de L´Oix.
00:30 am “CREMÁ” de la Falla Mayor Benidorm Centro.
01:00 am “CREMÁ” de la Falla Mayor Els Tolls.
Benidorm Tourism are not responsible for any changes to this programme