The Spanish fighting bull in its habitat

Fighting bulls are reared in one of Spain’s most impressive settings. They share their space with other animals, including boars, rabbits, deer, and partridges. Taking a tour of the Iberian dehesa is an excellent plan. This is where bulls spend four or five years, with the freedom to roam and with a team of people, led by a livestock breeder and a mayoral (the expert in rearing bulls), who put their heart and soul into raising them until the time comes to show their ferocity in the bullring.

The tentadero, an exercise where the bulls’ bravery is tested, is the first step. The process is as follows: bulls are engaged in an open field with branches so that they don’t become familiar with the muleta (a stick with a red cloth) or the cape too soon. They are first put with cows and then with males to see if they will attack… It’s always a challenge to choose the bulls that will put up the greatest fight in a bullring. The tentaderos are organized before the season begins, providing bullfighters with the perfect training session. Visiting a ranch with fighting bulls, eating alongside and participating in fieldwork with the breeders and experts is an unforgettable experience.

This is especially true if, during the months of the tentadero (November to April), you have the chance to witness one of these tests of bravery first-hand.