A lot of people are interested in the Tomatina festival, but have their doubts. Is the festival really about gathering hundreds of people in a narrow street and throwing tomatoes at each other? Well, that´s exactly what it´s about!
It all started back in 1945 when an annual parade of enormous figures with big heads (Gigantes y Cabezudos) was passing through the streets of Buñol. It seems that some youngsters tried to join in the parade and accidentally knocked over one of the giants who got to his feet and started swinging out at everyone around him. In retaliation the youngsters grabbed some tomatoes from a nearby vegetable stall and started throwing them at him. Within no time everyone was throwing tomatoes at each other.
The result was welcomed not only by neighbours but from then on ait has become an internationally known traditional festival, held the last Wednesday of August. Since 2002 it is considered Festival of International Tourist Interest by the General Secretariat of Tourism.
But what to do to enjoy the Tomatina?
The first, of course, is going to Buñol. The village is close to Valencia, so the train is the best option. The train ticket is not expensive and takes you directly from the center of Valencia to the village station, close to where the action is.
Above all you must think about how to return. Even after the traditional dip in the river, your clothes end up being useless and the smell of tomato will accompany you a few hours. For that reason it is not advisable to use your own vehicle.
Wardrobe recommended for Tomatina
If you wear shoes, make sure they are old and can be adjusted firmly. If you wear flip-flops, you´ll lose them for sure. Consider your wardrobe a victim of war, you most likely lose it, will get thorn apart or simply can´t remove the tomato stains.
It is very advisable to wear goggles, acid tomato easily irritated eyes. But don´t use your own sun glasses, as they would not survive.
And for those keen of photography, be sure that your camera is waterproof or that you keep it in a safe place.
Photos from www.latomatina.es
Tips to enjoy the party
Do not bring hard objects, like bottles, sticks or similar, with you. The agglomeration of people and the continuous throwing of tomatoes creates a chaos in which people can bump into you and hurt you or themselves.
For safety, it is best not to throw the shirts. It can be very cool in the midst of battle, but it hurts.
Before throwing the tomato, crush it first so it does not provoke a major impact on the target, but of course it depends on the attitude you have.
No need to bring your own tomatoes, as through the streets of Buñol will pass trucks loaded with tomatoes and the people on them throwing the first “bullets. ” With tomatoes from the streets you can return the impact to anyone you wish. Eventually it forms an entire pool of tomato broth, in which you´ll have a lot of fun. The most important advice is that you be careful with the trucks and do not go near them.
Finally remember that it is a party, so celebrate it as such, with good humor, a desire to have fun!