Mendoza's biggest party of the year is here and you are invited!
The first week in March marks the beginning of the National Grape Harvest Festival, Fiesta de la Vendimia. Thousands of people will descend on the city to properly celebrate the harvest. This week you will notice that the otherwise calm city takes on a Carnival-like atmosphere in which people take to the streets to dance and spread good cheer (in a wine glass). The week-long celebration all leads up to a main event in which the "Queen of Vendemia" is crowned with a tiara made from grape leaves and vines.
No matter what you do in the city this week, it will be hard to miss the excitement, but if you are looking to get the most out of the Harvest Festival experience then the following events are not to be missed.
Sunday, March 2
9 pm: The blessing of the harvest fruit ceremony takes place in San Martin Park. The event is free, so just follow the crowds to the Prado Gaucho area in the park.
Friday, March 7
9 pm: The Vendimia Queens and performers form a parade throughout the city. Find any spot along the main city streets and watch as the decorated floats pass by. The Queens will throw fruit and other treats to spectators, so be ready to catch.
Saturday, March 8
10 am: The morning parade. Once again, the Queens will float through the city streets and toss out their fruit.
10 pm: In the evening, thousands of people file into the Greek Ampitheatre to watch the main event, Acto Central, a Las Vegas style performance of the queens, leading up to the crowning of the "Queen of Vendimia." This event requires tickets.
If you did not get tickets last week, head down to Plaza Italia where you can watch it all on the big screen that is set up for your viewing pleasure.
March 9, 10, 11
A repeat performance of Acto Central, without the Queens. Tickets are required.
So raise your glass (afterall, you have even more reason to this week) and enjoy the vino.
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