Saturday, April 30, 2016

Feria del Toro de Pamplona Cartel 2016

The poster for the Feira del Toro 2016 has been announced by MECA, Casa de Misericorda de Pamplona.  They have selected a photograph by Pío Guerendiáin of the July 12, 2012, running of the Victoriano del Río bulls taken at the entrance to Calle Estafeta, "La Curva".

Contact Iberian Traveler for additional information on attending the fiesta.
Select one of our Exclusive Packages for the Running of the Bulls 2016.

Friday, April 22, 2016

The Official Poster for the Fiesta de San Fermín 2016 has been selected!

Now, we have to wait until MECA releases the cartel for the Feria del Toro, the Festival of the Bull.

There's still time to join us in Pamplona for the opening days of the fiesta and the Running of the Bulls!

Saturday, March 19, 2016

The Running of the Bulls, A Perilous History…

"Antioquio", "Castellano", "Semillero" and "Liebrero" are four of the most famous bulls in the history of the encierro, the running of the bulls, but they are not alone…
with thanks to our friends at

The history of the running of the bulls is both the story of the hundreds of brave runners who have risked their lives running between the lethal horns and the thousands of toros bravos, Spain’s magnificent fighting bulls, who have shared the narrow streets of Pamplona’s old quarter for more then 100 years.  Among these bulls are some, more than others, that deserve to be remembered because of the shear panic or unforgettable moments of fear they have created in their race into history in the Plaza de Toros de Pamplona.

A Torrestrella bull overtaking runners along Calle Estafeta, July 7, 2014

Just as some bulls are remembered for what happened when they faced such famous bullfighters as Joselito (José Gómez Ortega), who was fatally injured by ”Bailaor" in May 1920 in the bullring in Talavera de la Reina (Toledo), Ignacio Sánchez Mejías, matador, writer, friend of Federico García Lorca and brother-in-law of Joselito, who was gored to death at the age of 43 after coming out of retirement by the Ayala bull ”Granadino" in August of 1934 in Manzanares (Ciudad Real), and the legendary toreador Manolete (Manuel Laureano Rodríguez Sánchez), considered  by many as the greatest bullfighter of all time, who died at the age of 30 on the horns of the Miura bull ”Islero” in Linares (Jaén) in late August, 1947, the names of some of the fighting bulls in Pamplona’s famous running of the bulls continue to live on in the history of the encierro.

Perhaps the most famous of these bulls to date is “Antioquio”, a powerful fighting bull of the Guardiola Fantoni bull raising ranch, who charged into history on the morning of Sunday, July 13, 1980 after causing the death of two runners on the same morning, a dark cloud on an otherwise sunny day.  
José Antonio Sánchez, an experienced runner from Cintruénigo (Navarra) was the first to be fatally gored as he ran up the slope of Calle Santo Domingo.  José Antonio was about to enter the Town Hall Square when he was caught from behind by the charging bull.  The second runner to fall victim that morning, Vicente Risco from Badajoz (Extremadura), received several fatal gorings in the bullring in what was one of the longest and most tragic days in the long history of the encierro.

Friday, February 26, 2016

A Brief Chronicle Of The Running Of The Bulls

11 July 2015, José Escolar bulls in the Ayuntamiento, 4 gorings-photo by Rodrigo Sebastián Cabrera
With thanks in part to Luis del Campo and our friends at

There have been 16 deaths associated with the modern history of the running of the bulls beginning in 1910 with the death of a young man from Falces (Navarra) who had been injured on July 7, 1910, the first encierro of the fiesta, but who did not succumb to his injuries until mid-January 1911.  Although 16 fatalities in 105 years amounts to a small percentage compared to the number of runners in any one encierro (more people die every day falling in their bathrooms), they are also only a fraction of the number of serious injuries that occur durning a typical encierro.

Averages can be misleading, but in the last 35 years there have been a total of 262 goings requiring hospitalization (an average of one per day during the 8 days of the encierro), along with nearly 1200 serious injuries requiring more then a band-aid.  A host of other minor injuries have averaged 32 per day over that same period, keeping the medical teams along the route busy.

A goring doesn’t happen during every encierro, but, as in 2004, Jandilla bulls managed to gore eight runners while seriously injuring ten others in one run.  On July 10, 2009, a Jandilla bull named “Capuchino” caused the death of the 16th person to die during the encierros, Daniel Jimeno, a young man from Alcalá de Henares (and Pamplona), at the end of Telefónica.  And just last year another Jandilla bull gored three runners during the first, and one of the fastest, encierros on record.  The breed will be returning this year.  

In 1988 a Cebada Gago bull named “Doloroso II” managed to gore six runners along the route, with the Cebada Gago bulls adding seven more gorings to their record set in 1999.  The Torrestrella bulls managed six goings during their encierro in 2001, matching what they did in 1994.

On July 12, 2007, a bull named “Universal”, from the Marqués de Domecq breed, gored six runners, beginning on Santo Domingo, severely goring a Pamplonica in front of the city hall before catching two American brothers as they ran down Estafeta (forgetting to look behind them as they ran together).  Then there was the runner from Mexico that he caught trying to hide in a doorway.  Finally, it caught up with a Norwegian trying to climb the fence on Telefónica, goring him in the back of the knee to finish his day.

The Miura bulls, the largest, and some of the quickest fighting bulls, gored five runners during their 2009 appearance.

Click here to read the chroncile of the 16 tragic events in the modern history of the running of the bulls in Pamplona.

Sunday, February 21, 2016

When “The Sun Also Rises” over the streets of Pamplona

At 8:00 am the morning of July 7th, when the first rocket explodes in the sky above the Ayuntamiento de Pamplona announcing the start of the first encierro, the running of the bulls, the bright morning sun will momentarily blinds runners standing in the town hall square near the top of Santo Domingo awaiting the onslaught of the six charging bulls and six massive steers racing up the steep cobblestone street from the corral at the bottom of the slope.  It will be a tense moment for those unfamiliar with what is about to happen.
On this day in 2015 the Jandilla bulls set a fast, thrilling, and very dangerous pace, seriously injuring 11 runners along the way, finishing the encierro with three gorings, the first occurring on Calle Santo Domingo.  It was the first time the Jandilla bulls had more then two gorings in less then 3 minutes (2 min. 23 sec.), and the 5th time there were 3 or more gorings on the opening day.  It was also one of the fastest runs for the Jandilla bulls in their 16 appearances in the Fiesta de San Fermín.  Will they repeat it in 2016?  

Friday, February 5, 2016

Feria del Toro 2016

Sanfermines and the Running of the Bulls

July 2016 will mark the first appearance of the fighting bulls from the ganadería Pedraza de Yeltes of Salamanca, and the return of the Cebada Gaga and Núñez del Cuvillo toros of Cádiz, for the Feria del Toro de Pamplona, the Festival of the Bull and the encierro, the running of the bulls.

Also returning for the fiesta are the roros bravos from the Miura (Sevilla), Jandilla (Badajoz), Fuente Ymbro (Cádiz), José Escolar Gil (Áliva) and Victoriano del Río (Madrid) ranches, a few of Spain's bravest and most dangerous fighting bulls.

July 7, 2016 will be the 94th anniversayr of the Plaza de Toros de Pamplona under the ownership of the Casa de Misericordia, the House of Mercy, founded in 1706 to care for Pamplona's poor and its seniors.

Exclusive Packages for the Fiesta de San Fermín and the Running of the Bulls:

VIP Packages
For the opening days of the fiesta
4 days / 3 nights
Arriving 5 July 2016
From €2049,98/person, double occupancy

Standard Packages
For the opeing days of the fiesta
4 days / 3 nights
Arriving 5-7 July 2016
From €1349,98/person, double occupancy

Basic Packages
For the opening days of the fiesta
4 days / 3 nights
Arriving 5-7 July 2016
From €1099,98/person, double occupancy

Contact Iberian Traveler to book a package

The Rioja In Winter

Torre de Oña

What to do with 3 days in the Rioja from late January to early March.  Culture, Wine and Gastronomy at its best!

The Rioja is stunningly beautiful even in the dead of winter.  A land of atmospheric fortress towns with medieval walls, the Rioja is filled with Noble homes with heraldic shields, charming family run country inns and rural hotels, Gothic churches and Renaissance Monasteries, dólmenes (ancient burial markers), vibrant boutique wineries, and award winning restaurants serving superb regional Riojan and Basque cuisine.
There are now more than 600 wineries in the three distinct sub zones of the Rioja wine region; the Alta, Baja and Alavesa, and Haro’s Barrio de la Estación is the only place in the world where you can find five major wineries dating back more then 100 years within easy walking distance of each other.  
The following are some of our favorite stops during late winter, or most any other time of the year.