The Festival das Fallas has over 150 years of history and a long tradition in Xàtiva, it was the second city to celebrate the Fallas after Valencia. The first Fallas monument was built on Plaça de la Trinitat in 1865
The month of March is a superb opportunity to visit Xàtiva and stroll through its streets in search of monuments and the immense range of activities on offer. The local Fallas are very popular, with 19 commissions, and have their own cultural characteristics and values. Along with those of other cities, the Fallas were declared an Intangible Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO in 2016.
The Fallas monuments that satirize reality are the central and original element of the festival, the most notable example of its aesthetic, creative and technical values. In Xàtiva, 19 are created, one for each Fallas commission, accompanied by their corresponding children's monuments. On the night of March 19th, St. Joseph's day, the public watches the colorful and symbolic burning of the monument.
The ephemeral art of autumn artists, a profession often handed down from generation to generation, is turned to ashes after months of work.
“[...] And it was these same guilds - the wood guild in particular - that turned their celebration of union into the instrument that channeled the people's relief into the tragicomedy of wearing the ritual trunks - the parot or crossbeam in which the carpenters hung the candle from their factory vigils - with the appearance and effigy of the hated one or his immediate incarnation: the thief merchant, the despot bailiff, the profiteer aedile... The flames then fulfill their liturgical mission of purification .” (free translation) (Josep Renau, Revista Nova Cultura, 1937.)
The Fallas calendar of events grows year after year and peaks during Fallas week. These are days to live on the street, with music and fireworks. The program conceived by the different commissions and by the Local Fallera Board is very varied: sports championships, theater competitions, paella making, presentations, parades, musical performances, offering flowers to the Mare de Déu de la Seu, Cultural Week, among other activities. The Baixada de Sant Josep, a pilgrimage that takes place on the morning of the 19th, is very characteristic and also very popular.