Baby Jumping Festival

El Colacho

You would be forgiven for being curious about the title of this festival because even though Spain boasts some of the most unusual and bizarre festivals compared to the rest of the world, throwing tomatoes over each other as they do in Valencia or being chased down the street by a herd of bulls in Pamplona does not come close to the excitement aroused by the Baby Jumping Festival held each year in Castillo de Murcia near Burgos.

Baby Jumping Festival in Castrillo de Murcia
El Colacho Baby Jumping Festival in Castrillo de Murcia – Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Anyone who has a newborn addition to their family can bring their baby along to this festival known as the El Colacho which has taken place on an annual basis since way back in the 1620’s. The festival itself is part of the celebrations held all over Spain for the Catholic festival of Corpus Christi and whilst at this particular time many other cities and towns have spectacular processions and a variety of other popular means of revelling and enjoying themselves, there is only one Baby Jumping Festival.

The babies are laid on the ground in swaddling clothes and grown men, yes adult males, dressed as devils jump over the infants and this is supposed to cleanse them of all evil doings. The question of who is protecting the babies from the example being set by the adults begs to be asked but who are we to doubt this traditional combination of religion and Spanish folklore which proves to be great fun, if not a little scary, to watch.

Anyone who is not blessed with receiving this protection during their early childhood and has lived life looking over their shoulder waiting for bad things to happen or illness to strike can, in their adulthood, choose to take part in an exercise of jumping through fire on 21st December in Granada, known as the Hogueras. This is intended to protect them from illness.

The festival takes place on the first Sunday after Corpus Christi so its date will vary accordingly.

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17 thoughts on “Baby Jumping Festival”

  1. El Colacho(baby jumping) must stop!!.
    This is very serious crazy event.
    I was shock and made me out of the words when I saw this news article.

    Spain government must stop this crazy event forever.
    And for those who are doing this must stop right away and do not ever think do to it again.
    I am really shock to Spain touriest department and government.

    Reply
  2. I do this my self we are all trained to do this there is no danger at all apart from you falling a hurting your self NOT the babies the babies are totally safe.

    Reply
  3. Unless the babies are under a steel cage or in deep in a snug depression in the pavement there is indeed a danger to them. A man starting his jump can have his foot slide out from under him during takeoff, falling forward onto the babies or sliding into them. A man landing can have his foot slide out from under him, falling backwards onto the babies. A parent kneeling by the babies might not have time to pull even a single baby out from under the falling man; he or she certainly wouldn’t have time to pull out all the babies.

    I am not advocating wrapping children in bubble wrap and locking them in a bank vault until they turn 18. Each parent must make the decision for themselves as to what situations to put their children in or what to let their children do. But do not claim something is perfectly safe when clearly there is some possibility of harm to a child.

    Reply
  4. guys chill, let the parents do what they want with the babies and if anything happens its kinda their fault for making their baby participate in this

    Reply
    • spot on , have been there twice, they know better than us, after all one can not be more catholic than the papa himself.

      Reply
  5. This is glorious! We need to do this in my town! Also: since the 1620’s folks. I think if it hurt babies people would not still be doing it.

    Reply

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