The far easterly village of Capdepera was bursting with activity last weekend as it celebrated its 17th Medieval fair. Over 70,000 visitors flocked to its picturesque streets, most heading straight up to the walled fortress of Capdepera Castle, which provides a very authentic backdrop to the festivities.
From Friday through to Sunday there was a busy program of events catering for adults and children. There were folk concerts, ceremonial dances, a medieval circus, street games and a fancy dress contest. As many as 150 market stalls lined the streets with artisans demonstrating their craft and selling their wares. Handmade jewellrey, puppets, leather goods and local produce were on offer, as well as less medieval looking jelly sweets and reclaimed furniture!
Children could be seen getting excited over wooden crossbows and swords. It was amusing to see them combining swords and walkie-talkies. Kids weren't the only ones to wield wooden weapons. A reenactment group also performed a battle at the top of the castle. Capdepera Castle is one of the largest on the island and played a key role in Mallorca's history. It was here that King Jaume I reportedly lit a huge bonfire, tricking the Saracens into believing a huge army had arrived and leading them to surrender Menorca.
All through the weekend there were animated street performers and traditional musicians, Xeremiers, playing lively tunes on their flutes and bagpipes. If you'd always wanted to hold a boa constrictor, there was a chance for that too.
The smell of barbequed meat and roasting peanuts wafted through the streets, drawing crowds to the main squares where food stalls were concentrated. Beers were served in terracotta tumblers which you could keep for a €1 and made for a great, little souvenir. With so many people, a degree of patience was required for those wanting table service, but with the sun shining the atmosphere remained upbeat and it really felt like the whole town was on holiday.
We're looking forward to next year already!
For more from Emily, visit her blog.