The Manizales Fair is not just a musical experience. The air is pervaded by the smell of verdant plantations and the best coffee in the world: Colombian.
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The Feria de Manizales takes place during the first week in January, immediately following the Feria de Cali. Manizales is known as Ciudad de las Puertas Abiertas (city of open doors) and its fair is recognized as a Cultural Heritage of the Nation.
The Feria de Manizales
The first fair took place in 1951 on the occasion of the city’s first 100 years and was created in the style of the Feria de Sevilla in Spain. So many customs from the Sevilla Fair are imitated that the Manizales Fair occupies an entire week. Over the course of the years, these Hispanic-Mediterranean customs blended with other Colombian traditions from the Andes region.
The Manizales fair is renowned nationally and internationally for its bullfighting season, which is considered “the origin ... of the bullfighting tradition in Colombia and America” http://www.colombia.com/turismo/ferias_fiestas/feria_manizales/index.asp and brings together the best bullfighters in Colombia, South America, and the Iberian Peninsula.
The International Coffee Pageant is the most symbolic event in the Manizales Fair.
The Reinado Internacional del Café is the fair’s emblematic event. Beautiful women from about thirty countries participate. The pageant complies with the strictest rules on international beauty contests. It is important to note that not even the Manizales bullfighting season, which is known for its traditions and high quality, brings together as many people as the International Coffee Beauty Pageant.
This is one of the most important pageants in America. Representatives of coffee-producing and coffee-consuming countries attend and it serves to highlight Colombia internationally as the producer of the world’s mildest and most aromatic country.