Animal cruelty at its worst. WARNING: Visual content may not be suitable for the faint-hearted.

Toro de la Vega also known as The Bull Tournament or the Lancing of the Bulls, is held annually in the town of Tordesillas, Spain, which seems to have a penchant for violent traditional festivals. If you thought the San Fermin Fiesta was cruel, you may not want to know about this festival.

Toro de la Vega sees hundreds of spear-wielding men every year, who enthusiastically chase a bull around town with their spears, each hoping to impale the bull. The one who succeeds is declared a winner and receives a medal. For a festival that dates back to the fifteenth century, The Bull Tournament is celebrated by some with vigor. In earlier times, after successfully killing the bull, the winner would parade around town with the bull’s testicles impaled at the end of his spear as a sign of victory.



During this year’s edition of the festival, a bull named Rompesuelas was chased down as it ran for its life and speared. The winner was initially declared, but later the title was forfeited because of some specific rules of the ‘game’ that weren’t followed correctly.


Animal rights activists clutter the venue of the festival, protesting against the inhumanity of the act performed by hundreds. The justice minister, Rafael Catala, said Spain already had animal cruelty laws, and defended the Tordesillas event as a “historic and cultural tradition” even though research shows that 74% of Spaniards oppose Toro de la Vega fiesta.

A local winemaker from Tordesillas told The Guardian that the festival generated jobs serving the thousands who attend the event, and blamed a small group of opponents for bad publicity. “If you don’t like it, don’t come,” she said.

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Also view: Animal Cruel Festivals That Need To Be Banned