Seville Snapshots: The Horses of the Feria de Abril of Sevilla

“Cat, estamos en Feria, ¿vale?”

Luna, the Novio’s god-daughter, is not quite three and already a declared feriante. We were sitting in a horse carriage, her teeny hand stroking the ruffles of my traje de gitana. In Spanish, “I’ve been to three Ferias. ¿Y tú?” Six, I replied, getting a puzzled look. Before I could explain, she drew in a deep breath and pointed at the team of horses pulling us along the fairgrounds. ¡Mira, Cat! ¡Un caballo!

photo by Hayley Salvo

There are so many things that are muu d’aqui about the Seville April Fair – the drinks, the dance, the dress (not to mention the etiquette). While it’s not for everyone, Seville’s social event of the year celebrates Andalusian beauty of all sorts, including its Jerezano stallions. Horses, riders and their carriages are allowed to circulate the fairgrounds until about 8pm, paying nearly 80€ an hour for the official license plate. Seeing the pale grey stallions, women dressed as amazonas perched on top with their legs dangling off the side and a crisp sherry in hand, adds an air of the past.

The caballos get gussied up for the event – their tales and manes are braided, balls of yarn and bells hang from their  bridles. I actually prefer seeing Feria during the day and admiring the creatures, as my family has always owned a horse and I’ve known how to ride since I was a kid.

Are you a horse lover? I’ll be going to the Feria del Caballo in a few weeks with my guiri friends – a whole week dedicated to horses and sherry!

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About Cat Gaa

As a beef-loving Chicago girl living amongst pigs, bullfighters, and a whole lotta canis, Cat Gaa writes about expat life in Seville, Spain. When not cavorting with adorable Spanish grandpas or struggling with Spanish prepositions, she works in higher education at an American university in Madrid and freelances with other publications, like Rough Guides and The Spain Scoop.


  1. Paco Sánchez says:

    …me encanta tu visión de la Feria y de nuestra Sevilla en particular…las fotos preciosas…just like you…can’t resist the “piropo”…

  2. Beautiful photos Cat! You’re making me jealous… would love to experience Feria again and next time spend more time people watching during the day vs. at night!

  3. Christine says:

    What wonderful pictures, thanks for taking me back. Ahhhhhhh

  4. Gorgeous, gorgeous photos. Thank you for the vicarious visit. Love Sevilla, must co-incide a visit with the feria some time!
    Linda recently posted..The legend at the Heart of a Canarian Village: Vi la Flor de ChasnaMy Profile

    • Sunshine and Siestas says:

      Thank you! Just be aware that the hosteleros are trying to make it just one week after Semana Santa in 2013 – which means hardly any rest time!!

  5. Beautiful tradition, gorgeous dresses AND horses…and, that little girl is just adorable!
    I like horses, but never owned any and have only ridden a few times. I sure hope you get your chance to ride one of those pretty caballos, Cat :-)


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