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Madrids Festival of San Isidro in May
Madrid, Spain, the most important festival in Madrid begins on May 15th. It is the day of celebrations in honor of the patron San Isidro.It is on this day that the Madrilenos (people of Madrid) go to the San Isidro church near the Manzanares River and drink the water from the San Isidro fountain. The San Isidro festival is not only the most important bullfighting festival in the world, however also offers other celebrations as well, which include fairs, concerts and dances. The activities include a popular jazz festival on the San Isidro meadow, fireworks, ballet and opera, as well as jazz and rock concerts.
Many Madrilenos wear the “castizo” (a typical dress of the city), and both women and men are appointed respectively “chulapas” and “chulapos”. They perform traditional dances in pairs called “chotis”, considered to be the most typical dance of the city since the 19th century and it is danced in all the traditional festivals. For those who want a taste of the local cuisine, the festival usually ends with a huge cook-off of Madrid’s most famous dish: the “Cocido Madrileno” (a hearty bean and meat stew) as locals compete with each other to see who can make the best interpretation of the famous dish.
The world's best bullfighters gather in Madrid for 30 days of events ranging from "Novatos" (youngsters) to demonstrations of the different styles practiced in South America as well as southern France. The best bullfights are usually reserved for the weekend program. Anyone who is anyone in the world of bullfighting will be making an appearance at the most famous bullring of them all, “Las Ventas”, at some point during the festival. There are numerous bullfights throughout the week. Getting ahold of tickets can be tricky, as it's an event that sells out fast!
For visitors to Madrid, San Isidro provides them with the opportunity to see this wonderful city in full swing – it’s the highlight of the year for locals and offers people a great chance to see the very best of Madrid and its warm, friendly people.
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