This year marks the 53rd year Benque Fiesta is being celebrated. Home to roughly 6500 +, this charming village comes alive as an influx of both locals and tourists head west to celebrate!
Benque Fiesta is an annual celebration at Benque Viejo. This is in honor of the patron saint ‘Our Lady of Mount Carmel’ (Nuestra Señora de Monte Carmelo). It is the largest and longest religious festival held in Cayo. It starts on July 1st and leads to the 16th, the Patrons day.
As traditions stand, religious ceremonies, gatherings and nuptials commence– known as ‘Las Alboradas’. Church bells chime in light of morning service for the patron saint with morning praise and worship followed by small social gatherings around the community. Leading up to July 16, local residents take turns hosting small get-togethers, serving up traditional favorites. ‘Bollos’ ( small tamales), and sweet and savory pastries – ‘maja Blanca’ being some of the popular delights.
Additionally, a beauty pageant, Flor de la Feria, takes place. Six beautiful candidates will be competing for the crown as the new Senorita Flor de la Feria on June 12, 7 pm,at the Marshalleck Cancha.
Following the pageant, Benque Fiesta ends with a bang which includes a funfair held yearly on July 16th. Fireworks light the sky as happiness and laughter fill the air while visitors enjoy mechanical rides, games, dance parties, and live entertainment. Sounds of the marimba play all throughout the night.