A castell (Catalan pronunciation: [kəsˈteʎ]) is a human tower built traditionally at festivals in Catalonia, the Balearic islands and the Valencian Community, all in Spain. At these festivals, several colles castelleres (teams that build towers) attempt to build and dismantle a tower's structure. On November 16, 2010, castells were declared by UNESCO to be amongst the Masterpieces of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity.[1]


Although based on the earlier traditional Muixeranga of Algemesí in Valencia, the tradition of castells within Catalonia originated in the Ball dels Valencians (Valencian Dance) in Valls,[2] near the city of Tarragona, first documented in 1712.[3] Over the course of the 18th century, they spread to other towns and cities in the area, including Vilafranca del Penedès and Tarragona, though it was not until the last 50 years that the practice of building castells began to spread to the rest of Catalonia.[2] Interest in castells began to grow in the 1960s and 1970s. In the 1980s, the inclusion of women in the formerly male-only discipline ushered in the època d'or (golden age) of castells; the presence of women is credited with allowing castells to be built lighter and stronger, permitting the construction of previously undreamed-of 9 and 10-storey castells.[4]

While in Catalonia, the Ball dels Valencians began to focus more on the acrobatic nature of building ever taller human towers, their more religious and allegorical predecessors retain their traditions: the Muixeranga, which is performed in the Valencian city of Algemesí, and in other places in the Valencian Land and Catalonia, where it is often called the moixiganga.

In 2015 the Coordinadora de Colles Castelleres de Catalunya hosted 99 groups, including Castellers de Vilafranca and Minyons de Terrassa, who were able to construct the tallest human tower to date, the "4 de 10" (10 levels of people with four in each level).

Other Languages
беларуская (тарашкевіца)‎: Кастэль (Каталёнія)
català: Castells
čeština: Castell
dansk: Castell
Deutsch: Castells
Ελληνικά: Castell
español: Castell
Esperanto: Homturo
français: Castells
galego: Castells
հայերեն: Կաստել
italiano: Castell
lietuvių: Kastelas
Nederlands: Castell (folklore)
日本語: 人間の塔
norsk: Castell
occitan: Castellers
português: Casteller
română: Castell
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Katalonski ljudski tornjevi
svenska: Castell
українська: Кастель
中文: 疊人塔