Stoke's voorjaarsschema 2019
As you probably know, Stoke Travel is based in Barcelona and it finally feels like winter. This cold snap that we’re experiencing across Europe is no laughing matter, with dozens of people dying across Europe as a result of the arctic air reaching as far south as Rome and the Greek Islands. Here on the western Med we’ve been lucky to escape the worst of the chill, but it is still cold enough to get us looking longingly towards the spring months and the social thaw that the warmer weather brings.
Have you ever noticed that Europeans seem to have winter and summer personalities that match the temperature and/or the amount of daylight hours? Winter Europeans are a cold and closed, overly clothed bunch, while their summer manifestations are scanty at best as the pent-up European predilection to party proceeds to pour from their pores.
Anyway, here’s a little sample of Stoke’s spring delights, something to keep you warm while Ol’ Jack Frost tries to fondle your January undercarriage. Read ‘em and plan, and before you know it you’ll be neck deep in sangria or bier and this cold bullshit will just be a distant memory.
This is the unofficial kickoff to the spring season, with the whole of Valencia building huge, intricate, beautiful sculptures and then setting fire to them — all in the city centre. Las Fallas is Valencia’s biggest party, the latest interpretation of the pagan festival heralding in spring. It really has to be seen to be believed, the amount of workmanship that goes into building these sculptures, just to then burn them down…
Spring break! Woo! Chug! We’re going to take a North American classic to the world’s number one party island, because that just makes sense. Join us for a slightly classier take on the classic spring break, that is no less loose than its American and Caribbean counterparts. At this time of year the classic Mediterranean party island is just warming up, so think less “lads on tour” stinking up the place, with more than enough parties to test your mettle. An absolute must for study abroad students, early-season travellers and anyone within flying distance from this kickass spring party.
We’ve been harping on about this one for a while now, because it’s nowhere near as popular as it needs to be. Springfest — Oktoberfest’s earlier, smaller, more authentic cousin — is Munich’s way to squeeze more beer-fuelled madness into their calendar year. The beer is the same, the beer wenches just as wenchy, the food is still delicious, and the Bavarian beer bands play just as catchy tunes. The only difference is that Springfest features less tourists, more locals and generally more space to chink glasses with friends and strangers alike. Stoke’s Springfest is growing every year, and while it doesn’t yet rival the behemoth that is Stoketoberfest, it’s a very fun spring alternative to the trip that has made us (in)famous.
Stoke sports day? In London? If you’ve been away for a year perhaps these words don’t make any sense together, but times are a-changing, and Stoke now has a London head-office (in a winSTe bar, nonetheless), and last year’s sports day was a smashing jolly good hit, with thousands turning up to throw around balls and suck shots — not necessarily in that order. Well, now we’re doing it again, with New Zealand taking on Australia in rugby, and bands and DJs and all things Down Under on sale for those who need an antipodean fix.
And when we put it like that spring with Stoke really gives us something to look forward to, doesn’t it? And imagine doing it all and getting something for free by combining it up with the paspoort. Hot damn, doesn’t that make the cold bearable. And if you are a study abroad student (and we use the term “student” loosely), why not familiarise yourself with the spring semester calendar.