La Tomatina – How to Strategise, Survive and Socialise
Buñol is a tiny town with a huge mission – to get you and 10,000 others absolutely filthy! It’s world renowned for the largest food fight in the world and you’re going to have a good time – you’re going to want to prepare.
Remember, La Tomatina is held on the last Wednesday of August, every year.
Strategise: Plan ahead!
1. Book a train ticket the day before or get the first train on the actual day. Trains are by far the cheapest option at around 5 Euros but will be packed out all day long. The first train runs at 6am – get on it! Too hung-over for packed out trains? Taxi’s are about 50 Euro from Valencia.
2. Bring a change of cloths. Public transport, tour coaches, hostels and hotels are unlikely to let you in after you’ve been covered from head to toe in dirty tomatoes, so be sure to bring a change of clothes for after the event.
3. If you have any bags – store them away before the tomatoes come out. There are loads of places to store your bags and clean clothes at the event – just look out for the friendly locals with storage signs and they’ll place your stuff in their garage. This will cost between 5 – 10Euros.
4. DON’T BRING ANY VALUABLES and bring just enough cash for the day (even if you’re storing them on coaches or in locals’ sheds – loads of people attend the event and you’ll hear stories of people’s belongings getting stolen every year).
5. Get travel insurance. This is a travel-must in any situation, but La Tomatina is especially risky and you’re likely to walk away with at least one war bruise.
6. Book accommodation early. You’ll find it hard to get accommodation if you don’t book at least 3 or 4 months before the event.
The event is held in on tiny, narrow street with 1,000’s of wild party animals crammed together, so remember:
7. If you’re a guy – expect to have all of your clothes torn and ripped off (it’s recommended to wear just shorts and a singlet).
If you’re a girl – wear a tight sports bra and tight top as the guys here can get pretty rough and may try to rip you’re shirt off if it’s a loose top (don’t wear anything nice – it’s going to be destroyed)
8. Wear protective head gear – goggles and caps are recommended and goggles can be bought for about 2 – 5 Euros at the event. If tomato gets in your eyes (and it will), the acidic juice has a real sting to it.
9. Every year, there is a small festival in Buñol the night before event, and if that’s too far, head out on the town in Valencia as many people like to start the party early with a pre-La Tomatina booze up.
10. The party doesn’t end after the tomato fight! Look out for flyers and online for info on which Valencia clubs and bars (and sometimes museums) are hosting the best after parties.