Press Release Blizko Communication
FERIA DU CHEVAL 2019
Saintes-Maries-De-La-Mer celebrates its love for horses
SHOWS, CULTURE, COMPETITIONS AND LOCAL TRADITIONS, THE VILLAGE OF SAINTES-MARIES-DE-LA- MER LIVES AND BREATHES HORSES FROM 11 TO 15 JULY 2019 DURING THE FERIA DU CHEVAL.
For over twenty years around 14 July, the Feria du Cheval has taken place in Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer, the capital of the Camargue. It is true that the Camargue horses, which celebrated their fiftieth anniversary in 2018, are an integral part of the local identity, along with bulls, rice and gypsy culture. For five days, equestrian shows, dances, film screenings, bodegas, book signings and plenty of other entertainment present Camargue horses in all their guises. Welcome to the beating heart of the Camargue!
From 11 to 14 July,
“Les Chevaux du Sud”
The ninth edition of “Les Chevaux du Sud” Book and Film Festival takes place over four days at the Relais Culturel in Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer and on Sunday, there are special events about working with horses in the Bouvau d’Aubanel and on the Place des Gitans. Organised by the Actes Sud bookshop in Arles, these events offer the opportunity to meet key stakeholders in the horse world and in the Camargue, as well as presenting a unique cinema programme and, for the first time this year, special activities for children. The festival is also a great place to meet and talk to different people at the many film screenings, talks, exhibitions, book signings and debates. Practical information. From 11 to 14 July, open to all,
free admission. Consult the full programme on:
From 12 to 15 July: street entertainment
During the Feria the village streets come alive every day in true Camargue-style with Sevillana and flamenco music and dancing, horse parades, working horse demonstrations and the traditional Bastille Day fireworks on 14 July.
Dates to note in your diary: 12 July at 4.45 pm in the arena, the Course Camarguaise bullfighting, with contestants competing for the Trophée de l’Avenir and the 4th day of the Trophée des Impériaux Espoirs - in memory of Florence Clauzel. Admission: €5/€10
14 July at 11 am, the “Campo Abierto” Spanish bull show at the Cacherel salt marshes. Open to all, free admission. 14 July at 6 pm at the arena, Corrida de Rejon du Centaure d’Or with Rui Fernandez, Sergio Galan and Oscar Borjas. Reservations by calling + 33 (0) 6 90 49 08 92
On 13 July:
Major equestrian show with Lorenzo
Dazzling display in the arena with famous equestrian artist and liberty specialist, Lorenzo. He’ll be joined by other equestrian artists including Gari Zoher, the Companie Impulsion, Alma Vaquera, Benoit Sumille, Hervé Maurel and many others. Laughter, thrills and excitement from 10 pm in the arena.
Practical information: Saturday 13 July at 10 pm in the arena. Admission: 30 euros for adults and 15 euros for children from 10 to 16 years
“Songe d’une nuit en Camargue”
In a magical natural setting on the Route de Cacherel, horses, bulls, herdsmen and Arlesiennes in costume take over the arena for a sound and light show. The 2019 production created by equestrian artist Thierry Pellegrin, and narrated by Daniel Demonflin, celebrates the fifteenth anniversary of the show. A highly original equestrian show suitable for adults and children. Free admission.
Practical information: Monday 15 July at 10 pm. Route de Cacharel. Free admission.
an ambassador for the Camargue
Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer, capital of the Camargue, is located at the heart of one of Europe’s natural wildernesses. Among the many animals that live there, horses are an integral part of the regional identity. Horses accompany man for work, leisure, travel and even art and have always been a feature of this region. Essential to “manadiers” (breeders of Camargue horses and bulls which roam free), horses are also the best eco-friendly way to discover the fragile wilderness, the marshes, plants and many species of birds.
In the past, horses played a part in local farming, notably for threshing cereals.
Nowadays, they still have a role to play in the working world. Horses exist harmoniously alongside the bulls, and are used by the herdsmen and manadiers to help monitor and round up the bulls.
Emblematic of the region, Camargue horses are known for their docility and have become the ideal leisure companion for visitors exploring the village and surrounding areas. There are many guided treks for all levels of riders to discover wild flora and fauna whatever the level of the riders participating.
THE PERFECT PARTNER
Throughout the year, Camargue horses play their part in helping visitors discover the traditions of Sainte-Maries-de- la-Mer with events such as the Abrivado (where herdsmen drive the bulls from the manade - the local word for wild roaming herds - through the village streets) the Bandido (at the end of the Camargue bullfighting in the arena, this is when the bulls are taken back to their grazing areas) and the Roussataïo (a procession of mares through the village streets). Horses also appear throughout the year in many different equestrian shows.
For further information about the Feria du Cheval, please contact Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer Tourist Office on +33 (0) 4 90 97 82 55 www.saintesmaries.com
Ideas for horse-themed excursions
Camarkas equestrian theatre, directed by the rider and equestrian artist Thierry Pellegrin, creates and performs a new production every year. In 2019, the Camarkas Theatre Company presents Coeur de Gitans about the history of gypsy culture in Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer and their veneration of St. Sarah. Grace, spirituality and passion with performances on 16, 19, 23, 26 and 30 July at 7 pm. Further performances up until to 1 January 2020.
Information and reservations: +33 (0) 6 20 14 50 35 /
Visit a manade
The Manade des Baumelles ranch was built in 1992 and recently renovated in an authentic style. Located on a nature site on the banks of the Petit Rhône, the Manade offers horse-drawn wagon tours through the grazing
areas to see the bulls and horses. Free drinks after the tour and possibility to book a meal at the Manade. It is an ideal place to discover Camargue culture and traditions.
Information on www.manadedesbaumelles.fr Sleep in a mas
The Mas de Calabrun*** is a typical Camargue farmhouse in the heart of the Camargue Regional Natural Park. Surrounded by three-hectare grounds, this charming hotel by the waterside is ideal for nature lovers seeking rest and relaxation. This friendly authentic mas has recently been renovated, retaining its traditional tower and sundial. Camargue thoroughbreds and pink flamingos taking flight are some of the many amazing views from the hotel. Information and reservations on www.mas-de-calabrun.fr
To discover more
Want to hear the beating heart of the Camargue?* Join us all year round! *
THE PANORAMIC VIEW FROM THE CHURCH ROOF, THE ORNITHOLOGOCAL RESERVE WITH ITS PINK FLAMINGOS, THE SEMI-FERAL HERDS OF WHITE HORSES AND BLACK BULL RANCHES AND PORT GARDIAN ON THE MEDITERRANEAN , ALL MAKE THE CAMARGUE IN SAINTES- MARIE-DE-LA-MER A COLOURFUL EXPERIENCE THAT IS UNIQUE IN FRANCE: A PLACE, WHERE NATURE AND THE LOCAL PEOPLE HAVE FORGED A VERY SPECIFIC IDENTITY ON THIS UNIQUE SPOT ON THE RHONE DELTA. From 20 to 22 April
Easter in Camargue.
From 3 to 9 May
Camargue and Rhone Delta Festival
From 24 to 26 May
From 12 to 16 June
On 29 and 30 June
French Barbecue Championships
On 6 and 7 July
Port Gardian Festival From 12 to 15 July Feria du Cheval. On 28 July 115th Festo Vierginenco. On 10 August Les Crins Blancs equestrian show at the arena. On 31 August and 1 September Saladelle Olde-Worlde Festival. On 19 and 20 October Pilgrimage. On 10 and 11 November Abrivado Festival. On 7 and 8 December Pilgrimage. On 28 December Tastes and Flavours of the Camargue Show
* Non-exhaustive calendar which can be found in its entirety on