Fiestas in MARCH
MARCH 5TH THE FIESTA OF “VIRGEN DEL SUFRAGIO”
On March 5th back in 1740 a deserted ship was found on Poniente Beach. At the time there was a lot of fear about the plague that was sweeping Europe. It was decided to keep the local people safe to set fire to the ship and push it back out to sea.
One wooden statue was discovered amongst the ashes, untouched by the fire and this was the statue of the “virgen del Sufragio” who is now the patron of Benidorm
This whole scenerio is re-enacted on Poniente beach each year on 5th March and is a wonderful event to see with lots of fancy dress etc.
MARCH FALLAS FIESTA 15th to 19th
This fiesta goes back to Pagan times and comes from the Latin word Facla which means Torch. This is one of the biggest most popular and unique of all the fiestas held through out the year, it is colourful and very very noisy with lots of fireworks from the early hours until late at night. This fiesta always end on 19th March which is another very important day here in Spain, Fathers Day.
Today the Pagan side of it is forgotten and San José (Saint Joseph), the patron saint of carpenters, is the official focus for the festival. Carpenters used to hang up planks of wood called ‘parots’ in the winter to support their candles when they were working. At the beginning of spring these pieces of wood would be 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 giving the people the opportunity to publicly mock and/or criticise unpopular events or people. These are what are today called the ‘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!. So basically this fiesta marks the beginning of SPRING and fresh beginnings.
Each district and in Benidorm there are three, Es Tolls, Benidorm Centro and the Rincon de Loix will spend the entire preceding year constructing these elaborate giant Ninots.
These Ninots are displayed for 4 days to give people time to inspect and admire them, they are placed in each of the 3 districts one can be found at the end of Levante beach, near Burger King, the 2nd in the Old Town in the Plaza Triangular in front of Mc Donalds, the 3rd again in the Old Town on Calle Tomas Ortuno. These are burnt in that order from midnight on the 19th starting around midnight then every 30 minutes.
The Fireworks – However loud you think this is going to be you’ll be wrong. There is no way of beginning to describe the amount of noise generated. Pregnant women are forbidden from attending, keep your mouth open to allow the sound to escape and not echo around your head – so they say – but be prepared to feel the ground shake beneath your feet.
And please don’t think you can rest up during the day to prepare yourself for the evening’s bombardments. After you’ve been unceremoniously startled awake at 8 o’clock.
Below is the normal schedule of events, but times may vary slightly
278 ANNIVERSARY OF THE ARRIVAL OF THE VIRGIN OF THE SUFFRAGE TO BENIDORM
“PLANTÁ” (setting up) of the Fallas:
Falla Benidorm: Plaza de la Hispanidad.
Falla Rincón: Av. Ametlla de Mar.
Falla Els Tolls: Tomás Ortuño street.
FRIDAY, 16TH MARCH: COMMEMORATION OF THE FOUNDING OF THE VIRGIN.
05:45 h. Opening of the Church of San Jaime y Santa Ana with the 21 salvoes and bell ringing in honour to the Virgin of the Suffrage, at Plaza de San Jaime.
06:00 h. Procession of the Virgin around the Old Town and a visit to the beaches, to end with the traditional verse to the Virgin.
07:00 h. Thanksgiving Mass, in honour to the Virgin. When that ends, there will be chocolate and cake for all the people present.
12:00 h. Bell ringing at the Church of San Jaime y Santa Ana.
20:00 h. Mass at the Church of San Jaime y Santa Ana, sung by the choir of “La Barqueta” accompanied by the organist Rafael Domenech.
SATURDAY, 17TH MARCH
10:30 h. Parade of the band “L´Illa de Benidorm”, by the streets around the Falla “Rincón de Loix”. Afterwards,
parade of Falla “Rincón de Loix” to visit Falla “Benidorm Centro” and then, both Fallas, (around 12:30h) will go marching to Falla “Els Tolls”, to pay them a visit.
12:00 h. Parade of Falla “Els Tolls”, around their quarter.
17:00 h. Parade of Falla “Rincón de Loix” around their quarter.
17:00 h. Parade of Falla “Els Tolls” to visit Falla “Benidorm Centro” and, afterwards, (around 18:00h) both Fallas will go visit the Falla “Rincón de Loix”.
24:00 h. Nocturnal parade, of Falla “Benidorm Centro”, around their quarter.
SUNDAY 18TH MARCH
08:00. “DESPERTÀ” (waking up by the sound of firecrackers and music), in the streets surrounding the “Falla Rincón de Loix” and Falla “Els Tolls”.
12:00 h. Parade of the Falla “Rincón de Loix”, and the Falla “Els Tolls”, around their respective quarters.
12:30 h. Parade of the Falla “Benidorm Centro”, around their quarter.
18:00 h. FLOWER OFFERING to the Virgin of the Suffrage and Saint James, with the participation of the
three Fallas. They will meet at Av. Europa / Av. Mediterráneo.
ITINERARY: Mediterráneo, Martínez Alejos, Plaza de la Cruz, Alameda del Alcalde
- Pedro Zaragoza , Mayor and Plaza de San Jaime.
MONDAY 19TH MARCH: SAINT JOSEPH´S DAY
08:00 – 08:30 h. “DESPERTÀ”, on the streets surrounding the three Fallas.
12:00 h. Falla Rincón. Religious service, in honour of Saint Joseph at Nuestra Señora del Mar Church.
Falla Els Tolls: Religious service, in honour of Saint Joseph at Buen Pastor Church (time not set yet).
13:00 h. Falla “Benidorm Centro”. Religious service, in honour of Saint Joseph, at Saint James Church.
14:00 h. MAGNIFICENT “MASCLETÁ” (firecrackers sound show) at Falla “Benidorm Centro” (Plaza de la Hispanidad), Falla “Els Tolls” (Tomás Ortuño street) and Falla “Rincón de Loix” (Av. Mediterráneo).
18:00 h. BIG PARADE OF FLOATS, with the participation of the three Fallas.
ITINERARY: Juan Fuster Zaragoza avenue, Mediterráneo avenue, Plaza Triangular, ending at Esperanto street.
23:00 h. “CREMÁ” (Bonfire) of the children Fallas: Benidorm Centro, Rincón de Loix and Els Tolls.
00:00 h. “CREMÁ” of the Falla “Rincón de Loix”.
00:30 h. “CREMÁ” of the Falla “Benidorm”.
01:00 h. “CREMÁ” of the Falla “Els Tolls”.
AVERAGE WEATHER TEMPERATURES FOR MARCH
SPRING STARTS 20th
Daylight saving time 2019 in Spain will begin at 2:00 AM on Sunday, March 31st
Temperature 14°C 57°F
Low Temperature 9°C 48°F
High Temperature 19°C 66°F
Sunshine Hours 9 hrs
Chance of Sunny Day 44 %
Rainfall days 7 days
Chance of Rain 18 %
Chance of Cloudy Day 18 %
Sea Temperature 15°C 59°F
Chance of Windy Day 18 %