Buñol (Catalan/Valencian: Bunyol) is a town and municipality in the province of Valencia, Spain.
The municipality has an area of some 112 km², and is situated approximately 38 km west of the provincial and autonomous community capital city, Valencia. It lies along the Buñol River and is surrounded by the mountain ranges La Sierra de Las Cabrillas, la Sierra de Dos Aguas and la Sierra de Malacara y Martés.
is just 39 kilometres from the city of Valencia, in a mountainous area
close to the coast. In the surrounding region you will have the chance
to enjoy beautiful nature areas such as Alta Cave, the Juanes River and
Turche Cave, where there is a 60 metre waterfall at rainy times of
The town also has many parks and gardens. Other points of
interest are its 13th century castle, the old town around it and El
Salvador Church, which also houses the town’s Archaeological Museum.
The municipal local economic base is a mixture of the industrial and the agricultural (carob trees, almond trees, fruit trees, olive trees and grapes.)
Nevertheless, it is in August when thousands of people head for Buñol to take part in its famous “Tomatina”. This amusing fiesta involves everyone hurling tomatoes at each other and has the International Tourist Interest designation.
Tomatina tomato fight.
Archaeological evidence indicates civilization in Buñol going back 50,000 years. Buñol's population is about 9,000 people but is visited by over 30,000 for La Tomatina: a tomato throwing event in the Plaza del Pueblo.
On the last Wednesday of every August, thousands of people gather in the Plaza and throw metric tons of ripe tomatoes at each other.
Buñol has regional rail passenger service to Valencia via the RENFE system.
On August 29, 2007, 40,000 Spaniards gathered in the town to throw 115,000 kilograms of tomatoes at each other in the yearly Tomatina festival. Bare-chested tourists also included hundreds of British, French, and Germans.
The sunny Mediterranean city of Valencia in Spain is world-renowned for
its tasty and succulent oranges. And just thirty miles away is Buñol,
another town just as famous for its produce. But its notoriety comes
from the locals' habit of wearing the produce as well as tasting it:
every year, Buñol hosts La Tomatina, the world's largest vegetable
fight. Situated only 30 kilometers inland from the Mediterranean Sea,
and well-connected by motorway and rail to Madrid and Valencia, this
charming town erupts into a fiery blaze of tomato-hurling on the last
Wednesday of every August.
The "batalla" takes place during a week-long celebration filled with
on-going festivities and with even greater anticipation for the
monstrous tomato battle that serves as the culmination of the week's
Without question the biggest tomato fight in the world, La Tomatina
started with a good laugh. During the forties, in Buñol's main town
square, a number of friends started a tomato fight for unknown reasons.
It's unclear whether the initial volley was aimed at city officials or
simply pedestrians unlucky enough to be in the line of fire. Soon
enough, however, with their rowdy hooliganism drawing passers-by into
the fray, everyone was having a great time. They had so much fun, in
fact, that from that day forward, the fiesta has been celebrated
annually and has grown ever bigger each year.
In an effort to draw more tourism (and therefore more targets) into the small town of Buñol, La Tomatina has blossomed into a full-blown fiesta that coincides with the festival for the town's patron saint. For a week leading up to the epic battle, the 20,000-strong town of Buñol, is filled with parades, fireworks, food and street parties. The night before La Tomatina, the narrow streets beneath the town's imposing Medieval bell tower are filled with tomatoes, in a much more palatable form than they will be the next day!
Cauldrons of delectable paella
cooking, simmered traditionally over wood-burning fires line the
Concurso des Paellas, near the Plaza del Pueblo, site of the imminent
skirmishes. Wine and food flow around the small town until the wee
hours, in a fabulous Dickens-like foreshadowing. After all, who can do
battle thirsty and on an empty stomach?
Then, early Wednesday morning, shopkeepers and business owners along the Plaza set about covering windows and doors in preparation for the messy onslaught. Large trucks rumble up the cobblestone streets to arrive in the crowd-filled square and, from the back of the huge trucks, official instigators begin ceremoniously pelting the awaiting throng with their precious cargo: sloppy, squishy tomatoes trucked in from the four corners of Spain.
Dressed in clothing doomed for the rubbish bin, more than 20,000 revelers retaliate against the truckers, each other and anything else that strays within range of their hand-crushed veggie blobs. Soon the streets are awash in seeds, pulp and tomato guts - possibly one of the best starts to a great marinara sauce to be found west of Mont Blanc.
The insanity ensues until more than 90,000 pounds of tomatoes have been hurled at anything with a pulse that ducks, runs, stops, turns about, or fights back. For visiting tourists, be aware that anyone with a camera or a baseball cap will be considered a prime target. Like all good battles, the assault is over in less than half an hour. Everyone then reconciles with their former targets and fellow warriors and heads down to the river to remove the saucy mess from hair and body.