del 14-jul-2024 al 22-jul-2024

Moors and Christians in Javea

Abahana Villas - Detail of the dress of the Moors and Christians of Jávea.
Abahana Villas - Detail of the dress of the Moors and Christians of Jávea.

There are not many festivals in Spain which are organised by the townspeople themselves, without big money sponsors, and fewer still as colourful and spectacular as this one.

Swords, catapults, long cloaks, face painted with fanciful designs, winding turbans. The participants' costumes and make up is really impressive, particularly in its attention to detail, the spectacular floats or the proud horses with their shining coats galloping loudly down the street.

The music bands are really threatening, especially at nightfall with the contrast between the dark and the lights helping to create a mysterious atmosphere. The attention to detail is admirable: all around are embossed belts, Moorish slippers, feathered headpieces or fantastic "gold and silver" from mysterious far away lands. Here and there the brave Christian warriors hold up their symbols; the eagles, lions and crosses, against the crescent moons and horns emblazoned on the uniforms and equipment of the ferocious Moors.

The Moors and Christians festival recreates an era which combined bloody battles and peaceful coexistence as well as moments of mutual mistrust. All the colour, show and ostentatiousness of these celebrations is an attempt to overcome the seven long centuries of war such as during the Muslim invasion and the later Christian reconquest.

In Jávea the celebrations are held in the third week in July, with impressive parades of Moorish and Christian women as well as the Muslim landing on the beach or the Christian assault on the castle and the surrender of the Moors.

The main parade, known as the Filà Capitana de Contrabandistas de Xábia, ends with a spectacular firework display which fill the Jávea streets with light and sound. The party goes on into the night and, far from the bad feeling of old, the Christian and Moorish troops party together as friends.

Come and join in this journey into the past, a festival full of good, clean fun and a real spectacle of light, sound and colour.

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