Masks and Carnival
Cold is not a problem to keep on celebrating the most traditional festivals.
This way, the neighbours of Aldeadávila de la Ribera celebrate their Winter Mask Festival by means of “La Bufa de San Antón”, dating from the times when Christianism started to make a room for itself among pagan rites.
It is a showing of their roots, of the preservation of a culture that has widened the ethnographic heritage of the province.
La Bufa is the first winter mask festival held nowadays in Castilla and León and shares the same origins as others celebrated in provinces nearby, such as Zamora´s. In all of them, the common denominator is the intention of chasing the devil or the evil spirits which wandered around at winter solstice nights away.
But if a festival is celebrated during these winter months like no other in the province of Salamanca, that is the Carnival of Ciudad Rodrigo.
In this festival, declared a National Tourist Attraction, the bull is the main character. In the Main Square, an original bullring is set up, completely built from wood (the well-known “tablaos”), with a good likeness to Medieval Arenas.
The Aguardiente bull, the bulls´ running with horses, the Carnival Ball, the performance of the Troupes in Teatro Nuevo, the Floats parade, the fight with bull calves at night…all of them are the unforgettable landmarks of the festival. ·”Peñas” and charanga bands accompany and encourage the traveller to get involved in the enjoyment, the costume and the transgression offered by this Carnival.