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Festivals - Fiestas and Carnivals in Spain

 Fiestas in Spain


Spanish people are known all over the world for their love of partying and enjoying themselves to the fullest. They make the most extravagant displays of affection for partying and celebrating in the popular festivals or ferias as known in their local tongue. These festivals take place in almost all the towns and villages throughout Spain. Some of the festivals in Spain have deep religious and historical meaning to the locals while others are simply meant for partying and having fun. The following are among the best festivals in Spain.

Tomatina

This festival is held on the last Wednesday of August each year in Bunol, Valencia. The Tomatina is a festival where tons of overripe tomatoes are thrown in the streets for one hour. It is typically a war of ripe tomatoes where people throw ripe tomatoes at each other that leave them red all over with tomato juice. The funniest part is that there are no winners as people just do this for fun and to enjoy themselves. You simply have to grab ripe tomatoes and throw them at anyone running, bending down, standing still, or moving. The rule for this festival is you have to squish the tomatoes before you can throw them at somebody else.

Carnival of Santa Cruz de Tenerife

One of the most famous festivals in Spain is the carnival of Santa Cruz de Tenerife. It is usually held in February of each year. This festival resembles the ones held in Brazil that features parades with floats and bands who perform different types of songs through the streets. The colors and costumes worn during this festival are very colorful and delight everyone. The parades move through the streets with energetic musical groups and well-dressed performers. The most beautiful scene of this festival is the parade of pretty, well-dressed young ladies who enchant viewers with their way of dancing. These ladies weigh more than 100 kilos, and it takes them months of practice and costume design to come up with the most amazing costumes to be used during the festival.

San Fermin

This festival takes place from July 6 to 14 each year. It is a festival that brings the party to every corner of the city of Pamplona. The festival starts by setting off the pyrotechnic Chupinazo from the mayor's balcony. The celebration is fun and full of dance and song. The fanous part of festival is the amazing Bull Run, which takes place every morning at 8 a.m. The run starts from Santo Domingo and goes through the streets to the bullring. Thousands of runners and spectators wall off the bulls so that they cannot escape until they reach the bullring. And on the 14th, the mayor comes out and announces the end of the festival. It is one of those festivals in Spain you should not miss.

Semana Santa

This is among the most important festivals in Spain. It is a religious celebration among the Catholics who memorialize and mourn the final days of Christ on Earth and at the same time sympathize with the grief of the Virgin Mary. It is held on the week leading to Easter Sunday. Throughout the entire week, processions consisting of big floats are usually paraded all over the streets. The climax of the celebrations is the procession of Good Friday whereby the floats leave the churches in the middle of the night and they are carried throughout the night to their final destination: the cathedral.

A Colourful Spectacle
It's hard to beat the experience of arriving in some small Spanish village, expecting no more than a bed for the night, to discover the streets decked out with flags and streamers, a band playing in the plaza and the entire population out celebrating the local fiesta. Everywhere in Spain, from the tiniest hamlet to the great cities, devotes at least a couple of days a year to their festivals. Usually it's the local saint's day, but there are celebrations of harvests, of deliverance from the Moors, of safe return from the sea - any excuse will do.



National Holidays in Spain


Jan 1st New Years Day - Aņo Nuevo
Jan 6th Dia de los Reyes - 12th night, The Three Kings
Mar 19th Fathers Day - San Jose
Variable Good Friday -Viernes Santo
Variable Easter Sunday -Dia de Pascua
May 1st Labour Day - Dia del trabajo
Aug 15th Assumption - Asuncion
Oct 12th Spanish National Day - Dia de la Hispanidad
Nov 1st All Saints Day - Todos los Santos
Dec 6th Constitution Day - Dia de la Constitucion
Dec 8th Immaculate Conception - Imaculada Concepcion
Dec 25th Christmas Day - Navidad

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