Today I spent 40 minutes on the telephone trying to find a hotel room in Valencia for the night of the 18th of March. This, the Nit de Foc, is the penultimate night, and one of the highlights, of the Las Fallas fiesta, involving an hour-long fireworks display of previously unknown scale and inventiveness, followed by drinking and dancing til dawn in the city’s beautiful squares. Previous Nit de Focs rate amongst my top nights out in Spain, ever. Unfortunately plenty of other people who don’t live in Valencia evidently feel the same way! When I asked one hostel owner if he had rooms for March 18th, he said, “for which year?”
So, if you are thinking of heading to one of the big Fiestas this year, be it Las Fallas, Carnival in Cadiz, Easter in Seville, or San Fermines in Pamplona, book your accommodation now, for this year or next, or end up sleeping on the street. I usually start by checking the big hotel chains on the web, then going through every number in various guide books. My troubles paid off at last today, when I finally found one room going in a business hotel 30 minutes walk from Valencia city center – as close as we’ll get this year!
Photo: Crazy Valencians playing with fire again! For more on fiestas, and to help me find the year’s best, check out this forum thread.