Six of the best fiestas and festivals in Benidorm

Benidorm is the party capital of the Costa Blanca with wall-to-wall entertainment from morning to night. So it's no wonder that whenever you decide to visit the top beach resort, you are likely to find a fiesta or festival going on.

Whether it's reenacting old battles, a celebration of the town's patron saint, carnival time or a top music festival, revellers will be enthralled by what Benidorm has to offer.

View to Levante beach, Benidorm

The town also celebrates fallas in March where comical statues are planted in the streets and burnt, hogueras which is a similar event in July and San Juan in mid-summer when everyone heads to the beach for a party and to jump over the bonfires at midnight for good luck.

The latest fiesta to add to its rich and varied entertainment calender is Benidorm Pride, which is turning into one of the biggest gay events in Spain with thousands enjoying the music and parades.

Spain-Holiday has chosen its six favourite fiestas and festivals to give a taste of what Benidorm has to offer.

Benidorm fiesta in November

Holidaymakers book this week in November a year in advance to be sure they can join in the fun when Benidorm holds its fiesta in honour of the Virgen de Sufragio (Our Lady of Suffrage) and St James.

It's a riotous week of music, parades, fireworks and a reenactment of when the Virgin arrived in Benidorm.

Benidorm Fiestas

These festivities date back to 1740 when a violent storm tossed a boat on to the Benidorm coast. The boat was burnt to prevent a possible epidemic but some boys found the image of the Virgin in the debris.

They rescued her and took her to the church where they went on to build a chapel. This scene is acted out on Poniente beach during the fiesta.

The fun starts on the second Friday in November with events including a big parade of musical bands, flower offerings to the Virgin, music each night, children's theatre, a mascleta which are noisy fireworks, a colourful parade of floats and fireworks to round off the end of the festivities.

The day after the official fiesta ends, the British hold a massive fancy dress party with a pub crawl around Benidorm.

The fun starts at about midday in and around Calle Gerona and the British quarter.

Morgan's Tavern in the English Quarter, Benidorm

Benidorm Carnival

Floats take centre stage for the annual carnival held before the beginning of Lent.This is the last chance to party before Easter and so Benidorm does it with style.

It's a fabulous spectacle with the children's carnival starting in the morning followed by a children's playground with a bouncy castle.

The adult carnival takes place in the evening followed by a party and fireworks show.

As well as the beautiful floats, many people walk along the parade route in fancy dress so it's a great excuse to dress up as your favourite film star or hero and dance your way around Benidorm.

As you would expect from Benidorm, some of the costumes are amazing.

Burial of the Sardine in Benidorm

Carnival officially ends a couple of days after the parades with the curious burial of the sardine ritual.

A large caricature of a sardine in its coffin is paraded around the streets in a mock funeral procession before being taken to the beach to be put to rest during a fantastic fireworks display.

Most towns celebrate the burial of the sardine on Ash Wednesday to symbolise burying the past with the hope of being born again to a brighter future.

Low Festival with star acts

Forget muddy Glastonbury and steep prices, music lovers in the know wait until the end of the July for three days of the best indie and rock acts at the Low Festival in Benidorm.

Suede at the Low Festival

It's called Low because it is low-cost compared to most festivals – and you get to enjoy the sunshine while listening to your favourite bands.

Tickets for this year were from €70 for the three days. Previous star line-ups include Suede, The Libertines and Kasabian so it's no wonder that up to 70,000 fans head to the resort for the festival, which gets bigger and better every year.

Dramatic battle between the Moors and Christians

Benidorm puts on a very dramatic show to turn back the clock to when the Moors ruled most of Spain but were then overthrown by the Christians in the 15th century.

Visually - and acoustically - the parades are stunning with great costumes, massive parades and noisy dramatic reenactment of the Battle of Lepanto between the two groups.

The groups march to the sound of a relentless drum beat and bagpipes to accompany the booming gunpowder with hundreds of people dressed as Moors or Christians in vivid costumes and headgear.

Even by Benidorm's standards, this is one of its finest fiestas. It's held at the end of September with spectacular marches around the streets as well as a grand offering of flowers to St James, a parade of floats, booming mascletas, fireworks and music.

Moors and Christians in Benidorm

You will see the Moorish invasion of the town followed by the ambassador and Moorish King urging the Christian troops to leave the castle.

The Christians refuse and so war is declared with the grand finale of the King storming the castle. Battle resumes as the Christians reconquer the castle.

Benidorm Pride

A newcomer to the Benidorm festival scene but it's already becoming one of the biggest and most popular events – it's certainly the most flamboyant!

Billed as fun, friendly and flirty, it is only fitting that Spain's best-loved beach resort celebrates the gay community with an extra-special Pride week in September.

Thousands of people dress up to the nines for the amazing parade along Levante beach with the event also offering free music, DJs and a dazzling White Party.

Benidorm Pride

This year, the organisers are hoping to attract 15,000 party-goers to join in the fun. The parade is the main event with thousands of people dressed in gorgeous costumes – some of which are a little bit risque too – to enjoy a musical march along the beach before enjoying a free concert with live music.

Benidorm is well-known for its great gay community centred around the Old Town,where many bars will also be taking part in Pride week.

A taste of Andalusia in Benidorm

Andalusia is famous for its April fair held in Sevilla with the beautiful Andalusian horses, a fairground, flamenco and people dressed in traditional costumes.

Many Andalusians work in Benidorm and so decided to hold their own fair in their adopted town at the same time so visitors can enjoy typical cuisine of southern Spain, tapas, live music and dancing.

The Benidorm April fair is more of a gastronomy feast than a fair with participating bars offering live music and tapas to get a taste of Andalusia such as gazpacho, salmorejo soup, oxtail, fried fish or a pork dish called flamenquin.