Each year, the Las Fallas festival in Valencia takes place on the same dates. The main events run from March 15 to March 19, but numerous events took place in the fortnight leading up to this week.
Dating back to a time when carpenters burned their wooden wick holders to welcome the sunnier spring season, this may just be the world’s strangest and most exuberant spring cleaning.
Sculptures as intricate as they are enormous (up to 30 metres tall) were paraded through the streets as merrymakers dressed in traditional garb dance to the tunes played by live bands, with pyrotechnics and gunpowder blasts punctuating the festivities at intervals.
On the final evening, the sculptures were burned in a massive bonfire so epic that neighbouring buildings have to be continually based with water to keep them from crumbling.
Then, in the true Spanish style, a dance party erupted and lasted until dawn.