are not only held in Pamplona. In the north of Navarre, in the heart of the Pyrenees, Lesaka
pays tribute to the same patron saint with a varied festivity programme. The festivity starts in both places on the same day, July 6th, and at the same time, 12 noon. They also start in the same way: a ceremonial rocket fired from the balcony of the town hall. From that moment on, the two localities live their festivities to the full, sharing features such as music, dances, general happiness, and a Mass and procession on the most important day of the fiesta: July 7th.
However, the Sanfermines of Lesaka are less well known than the festivity in Pamplona, but they are good alternative for enjoying a good day without crowds. Apart from the atmosphere, you will discover one of the most spectacular traditions of Lesaka
: the ezpatadantzaris
. These are folk dancers from the town who dance on only one day of the year: July 7th. One of the dances they perform is the Zubigainekoa
, a symbol of the peace accord signed in the 15th century between the historical neighbourhoods of Lesaka. It puts the dantzaris
sense of balance to the test as they dance along the stone parapet of the river Onin, a tributary of the Bidasoa.
This danced ritual involves a 'captain' addressing a group made up of an even number of young people in two rows, linked among themselves -and to the captain- by makilas
(sticks). They are dressed in white with scapulars and coloured ribbons, espadrilles and rattles on their calf muscles. Finally, the town's flag is flown over the bridge.