Dates of The Running of the Bulls Festival 2018
The Running of the Bulls festival is one of the most important events in Spain through the year because it brings thousands of travelers from all the places of the world. Many of them are recurring visitors that once fell in love with the fiesta and keep a place each year in their agendas to come again. Others come to Pamplona to live this life time experience, for the first time. And you, What kind of traveler are?
As we mentioned before this is a bucket list experience for many travelers, and the old town of Pamplona where the Running of the Bulls Festival happen is small.
You can imagine how hard is to find good accommodation, good balcony spots, and a table to eat in the best restaurants of Pamplona, right?
For that reason, we recommend you to plan your trip with enough time. That way you can get most of your tours and activities before they sold out.
The main activities dates of the Running of the Bulls Festival in 2018 are the following:
Chupinazo – July 6th – 12 Noon
The Chupinazo is one of the most exciting moments of the festival because is when the city of Pamplona claims they are officially in the Running of the Bulls Festival. Everything changes from that very moment as we mentioned in previous articles.
Corrida de Rejones – July 6th – 6:30pm
This is a unique activity that happens only once every year, in Pamplona, since is a very specific and unique way of bullfighting where the fighter is riding a horse.
Bull Run – July 7th to 14th – 8:00 am
The Bull Run or El Encierro takes place every morning From July 7th to July 14th at 8am. From Santo Domingo Street to Estafeta Street, 6 Bravo Bulls and thousands of runners, run the a route to finally get to the bullring where later the bullfight happens.
Big Heads and Giants Parade – July 7th to 13th – 9:30am
Every day in the morning you can enjoy with the Giants parade. The statues represent the Kings of Europe, America, Africa and Asia. Along with kings you will find the Big Heads, the Zaldicos, and the kilikis that are the ones who “attack” children.
San Fermin Procession – July 7th – 10:00am
July 7 is the official day of the Saint Fermin and there is a procession to honor him. The figure of the Saint goes from Pamplona’s Cathedral to Saint Lorenzo Church, where it’s located Saint Fermin chapel. Once there, a very emotive mass take place.
Bullfight – July 7th to 14th – 6:30pm
The first bullfight of the season happens on July 7 and it goes every afternoon until July 14th.
Peñas Parade – July 7th to 14th – After bullfight
When you attend to the bullfight, you will get to see the Peñas (group of people that belongs to a community for the Sanfermines) singing, dancing and drinking. They jump to the bullring when the bullfight is over and they won’t stop the party until they get to their venue again.
Bull Fire – July 14th to 14th – 9:45pm
They have a fake bull that seems to be on fire. The idea is that the kids also have a bull to run, so every night at plaza de Santiago the kids have their own encierro (running of the bulls).
Fireworks Contest July 6th to 14th – 11:00 pm
Every night, from July 6th to July 14th, take place the International Pamplona’s Fireworks Contest.
The Recital of Jotas July 8th to 14th – Noon
Every morning you can enjoy The Recital of Jotas and dance this traditional Spanish music.
Giants and Big Heads Farewell – July 14th – 09:30am
On July 14th there is a last parade to say goodbye to the Giants and Big Heads.
The parade starts at 9:30 am and finish at 2pm in Plaza del Ayuntamiento (this is the most special place to watch them dance and farewell them until next year).
Pobre de mi (Poor Me) – Jul 14 – Midnight
At midnight happens the closure ceremony at the Consistorial Square (Town Hall Square). It is the saddest moment of the festival because is the time to say goodbye to the Running of the Bulls Festival after a very fun week.
Now you might be thinking how can you make this experience unique and exclusive only for you and your crowd.
The answer is to do it with people who know the festival, people who is from Pamplona and love this amazing festival.
One of our founders is native of Pamplona, but is living in United States of America, for more than 7 years, so she can advise you best, because she knows perfectly the Running of the Bulls Festival, but also understand what are the needs of a traveler once in Spain.
Here are some of her favorites and most recommended events during the Running of the Bulls festival to make you feel the way you deserve: a VIP running of the Bulls guest.
Options for a Local VIP Running of the Bulls experience:
Chupinazo (Opening Ceremony):
To watch the Chupinazo there is no a better place that our VIP penthouse terrace where you will have a privileged spot to watch all that goes on during the celebration and the company of knowledgeable people who will be telling you all the details of the ceremony and explain to you how things are done and why.
Why to tag along? You will have not only the best view and atmosphere, but you will also have a great selection of best quality food and wine specially picked from region for this day.
Encierro (Bull Run):
To watch the Bull Run or Encierro you have to keep in mind a few things, first of them is safety and the second one is the quickness of run. It last about 2 to 3 minutes average.
When you are watching the Bull Run from above you will have a better perspective of the bulls because you will be able to watch the bulls and runners coming to your balcony, and see how they get further from you after they pass your balcony. Also, you will have the opportunity to see all the logistic that happens before the run that is quite amazing.
This being said you have to know that getting in one of Pamplona balcony is getting inside one traditional home in the main streets of the old town. This means you will know how people in Pamplona live and get to talk to them about more specific traditions and get the feeling of what the San Fermín Festival (The Running of the Bulls Festival) means to them. Besides, They will have for you a gourmet breakfast to make even more enjoyable the stance at their balcony.
I live Spain offers a special cocktail dinner with the best selection of Spanish food. This takes places in a VIP Terrace located at Baluarte Building (Auditorium of Navarra). Where the dinner will be enliven with traditional music that will set the perfect tone for watching the famous Pamplona Fireworks contest in style. Where quality of the food, perfect location, great music and incomparable view meet all in one place for you!
Exclusive Gastronomic Tours and Restaurants:
Are you a foodie? Let me tell you that you will be on paradise testing all the delicious combinations that Pamplona variety of Pinchos has to offer.
The problem during the Running of the Bulls festival the quality of the food is lower than usual in some bars and restaurants, that is why we have a tailored made intimate,tour that will introduce you to flavors, shapes, and most importantly names of the ingredients used in the Pinchos, during a oldtown walk to discover the best pinchos (tapas) in town.
This is great because next time you are on your own in one of Pamplona bars you will have a better idea of what the options are for you.
Remember that the options are infinity in Spain and if you have always wanted to eat in one of the Michelin starred restaurants this can be the perfect opportunity since Pamplona has some included in the Michelin Guide that are awarded with a star.
We will plan a dreamed night in the one that best suits your preference to escape for a night of the craziness of the Running of the Bulls Festival.
Pobre de Mi (Closing Ceremony):
Finally, To say goodbye to the Running of the Bulls Festival 2018, we have a very unique venue that will allows you to have a great time while waiting for the main ceremony happening in the square.
Of course the balcony has a great view of the square. Once again you will have the expertise of a local that with tell you more details of the ceremony and tell you about crazy and fun facts that surround the San Fermines Festivals. Does not sound convincing enough? Well there will be tapas and wine to enjoy the last night with style of this amazing festival.
Now you have all the information needed to start planning your exclusive running of the Bulls Experience in 2018, but please, if you need assistance, we will be happy to help you to plan a unique trip to Pamplona, during The Running of the Bulls.