Moors and Christians fiesta in Villajoyosa

Every year during the last week of July, the people of Villajoyosa hold their annual Moors and Christians fiesta, held in honor of Santa Marta and has been declared of international tourist interest.

This festival has been held for over 250 years in honour of Santa Marta, recreating an epic battle fought in 1538 in which Berber pirates attacked this coastal town and the inhabitants of Villajoyosa, who defended it with great courage.

Moors in Villajoyosa

The two armies dress in their historic costumes for the most important week of the year. The intensity and passion of the events take place under the generic name of Moors and Christians. During these days Villajoyosa vibrates with colour and is brimming over with merriment and fun, the two sides parading and marching through the streets to the beat of the drums and sounding of horns, this festival offers you days full of magic, spectacle and legend.

Friendship, camaraderie, and of course, food and drink present in every corner offers visitors the best local products, enjoy the hospitality so characteristic of this town.

What makes the Villajoyosa festival particularly special is the Sea Battle and Beach landing “Desembarco”.

Just before dawn on the 28th July, when the first ray of sun appears on the horizon, over 30 moorish ships gather off the coast of the town while the defending christians let of cannons and handheld mortars and land battle that ensues as the moors desembark their ships, and push the christians from the coastline back to the castle walls.

The battle is impressive, with lots fire, water, noise and drama showing visitors a truly memorable and almost real life performance, with the inevitable victory of the Christian army against the forces of the half Moon.

It is a great time to stay at the Montiboli Hotel, combine relaxation and good food, with the excitement of the parades, spectacular fireworks, do not miss the chance to try typical local drinks such as “nardo” or “lleteta” everyone is welcome to take part.

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