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The Castells, an unique cultural expression

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The Castells are human towers traditionally built in Catalonia from more than 200 years and, since 2010 Castells are UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.

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A casteller is who takes part in a colla castellera (humantower building team) where dozens or hundreds of people are involved with the aim of raise different human constructions, -known as castells– without any kind of mechanical help. These constructions could reach a height of 10 storeys.

This tradition emerged as an evolution of an ancient Valencian dance, the Muixeranga, which was spread through the South of Catalonia.  The first colles castelleres arose at the beginning of the XIX century in Valls (la Colla Vella i la Colla Jove dels Xiquets de Valls), and during the XX century were extended around Catalunya, Catalunya Nord and Balearic Islands. Nowadays there are more than 60 colles.

The most important thing of these constructions is that it gathers men, women, elderly and children. Everyone collaborates on the construction making a good team as a piña (meaning to stick together and support each other), where everyone knows his role (cap de colla –instructor-, enxaneta – little girl who climbs to the top-,…) and so the casteller’s motto makes sense: “Strength, balance, confidence, courage and wisdom”.

The castells and their colles are part of Catalan traditional culture but at the same time it gives the possibility to involve people from other cultures and social conditions in a playful way – Nowadays immigrated young people from other Europe countries and beyond  take part of it. These human constructions generate enthusiasm and passion in our country as well as lots of spectators.

There are a huge number of Diades Castelleres (A day in which two or more colles gather to build the best tower) as Sant Felix in Vilafranca, Santa Úrsula in Valls, Santa Teresa in El Vendrell, Santa Tecla in Tarragona,..We highly recommend you to attend because you will be touched, you will be thrilled, you will share…

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