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São João Fair starts Saturday in Angra do Heroísmo: Forget Pampalona, come to Terceira

bullfight in Sanjoaninas, Terceira Islands, Azores
Credits: Associação de Turismo dos Açores

Starting on Saturday, in Angra do Heroísmo, on Terceira Island, the São João Fair has three bullfights lead by international names in bullfighting. 

This year São João Fair showcases bull runnings: two equestrian bullfights and one on foot. The “pega” -- the traditional finale where men (forcados) try to grab and hold the bull by its horns” -- is performed by ‘forcados’ from Terceira Island.

This fair makes part of the Sanjoaninas Festival, which attracts thousands of visitors to Terceira Island every year. The event dates back to the 16th century and celebrates Terceira’s people, traditions and culture.

This Festival is a combination of religious celebrations, cultural activities, sports and mainly the reunion of many Azorean emigrants spread through the world. Besides the typical “Queen Parade,” where different groups perform choreographed dances, Sanjoaninas includes the traditional Portuguese bullfighting and the typical “running of the bulls” from Terceira – a local traditional similar to the Spanish bullfighting.  

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