Thursday, 8 November 2012

2 Nov 2012 – U3A Trip to Cocentaina

This is the fourth U3A coach trip we have joined this year.   We did not realise that it was so close to our Madrid trip when we booked.   We visited the famous medieval fair, which is part of the Cocentaina week long festival.

We were expecting something like a large rastro, but this fair is on an altogether different scale.  Its spread over the whole town, goes on for four days and had 530,000 visitors in 2011
Our first stop was the main square, where we had a very expensive hot dog.   It was all very medieval, with wooden tables and seating.   It was not very busy when we arrived at 10.30, so we did not have to queue for long, and managed to get a seat
By the time we finished our snack the town was filling up.   It’s very well organised for a Spanish festival.   The tourist information had maps in English showing the location of the portable toilets and a marked route around the town.   Each area had a different theme, all open air.   One section specialised in fast food, another medieval fair, and another children’s toys.   There was a peddler’s area, an Arab market and a Jewish quarter.    There was even a horse fair.   
 The medieval fair was the most interesting section with market displays...
... falconry display.....
....and even archery lessons for young children using real arrows!   What would health and safety think of that?
After a couple of hours wandering around the town we were drawn to another square by the sound of bagpipes.   The Basque group were very entertaining, though the seating left a little to be desired.
Then it was time to find some lunch.   No shortage of choice.   Each square now had a large outdoor barbecue area surrounded by the same rustic seating and packed with hungry visitors.
After lunch we explored the Jewish Quarter and the Arab Market...
.... and then looked around the horse fair
By late afternoon we were weary of walking around and watched an Arab dancing display until it was time to return to the coach.

It was an excellent day out.   Much more enjoyable than we had expected.   I would recommend it to anyone who has not yet paid a visit.   But do allow all day, and do wear sensible and comfortable shoes

No comments:

Post a Comment