20th of November will be the day of one of the most famous and breathtaking catalán tradition – the Castellers (Human Towers). Be Hostels advices you to visit the neighbourhood of Gracia this day to get amazed!
Probably you’ve already seen somewhere groups of men, women and children dressed in brightly colored shirts and broad, black belts, climbing on top of one another to build intricate castles with astounding ease and grace…Well, they are called Castellers, which means “castle-makers”and actually they are making human towers, which can reach a maximum of ten storeys high! Every level can consist of 1 to 5 persons…
The building of castells is a rather rural tradition, which also explains why the first club in the city, the Castellers de Barcelona, was founded quite late in 1969. The founding members of the coll are mostly former citizens of Villafranca, not far away from Barcelona. There were some earlier groups, but they remained unsuccessful and no longer exist.
The Castellers de Barcelona kept on refining their technique and the towers became higher and higher.
While in the 1970s, 7-level castells were built, the already have 9 levels today. This level of difficulty has only been achieved by 10 of the colles of the casteller association. The “Coordinadora the Colles Castelleres de Catalunya” comprises 60 colles.
Traditionally, the castellers perform their tower building during the main parts of larger festivals. Usually, three colles come together and build their human edifices. Nowadays, the towers are also often built outside of the festivals – the actual season goes from June to November.
This thing is the one that you’d better see yourself. Just go to Gracia neighborhood of Barcelona on 20th of November.