Spanish cultural events are breathtaking spectacles that everyone should try to attend on their trip to Spain. While it may be impossible to see—or even list—them all, we’ve compiled a great list of Spanish cultural events that you can enjoy on your next holiday in Spain.
Culture and Events in Spain
- La Tomatina¨ – Valencia Tomato Fight Festival –
Takes place in August in Bunol, Valencia. 30,000 people throwing 240,000 pounds of tomatoes at each other. Talk about fun!
- Tamborrada de San Sebastian/ The San Sebastian Drum Festival –
Takes place in January in San Sebastian, Basque Country. Hundreds of drummers parade through the city on the night of New Year’s Day. In the morning, it’s the children’s turn with the “Tamborrada Infantil” celebration.
- La Endiablada / The Disguised Devils –
Takes place in February in Cuenca, Castilla y La Mancha. The villagers all dress up as devils with huge cowbells tied to their waists and paper hats. The colors are bright and vivid. As the villagers run through the town dancing inside of churches and “wash” the statue of San Blas, the outfits, sounds and revelry are a sight to behold!
- Fallas de San Jose –
Takes place in March in Valencia. Stemming from the Middle Ages, this festival has a night parade, a floral offering to the Nuestra Senora de los Desamparados (Our Lady of the Forsaken) and the “Nit del Foc” (Night of the Fire), during which all the “fallas” (grotesque and humorous scenes made up of cardboard figures) are engulfed in the inferno.
- Feria de Abril / April Fair –
Takes place in April in Sevilla, Andalucia. Right after the Holy Week, the Seville Fair kicks off with huge festivities that last all morning, day and night. A frenzy sweeps through the fair around midday when riders come into town and at night when the spirit of the fair overtakes thousands of flamenco singers (Cantaores). As they scream and sing wildly, the bailaoras (dancers) are overcome with the spirit as well, flailing their arms and legs wildly.
- Fiesta de Moros y Cristianos (Moors and Christians) –
Takes place April 22 to April 24 in Alicante, Valencia. Kicking off with the Feast of the Holy Christ in Valverde del Jucar (Cuenca) in January and ending with the “Moorish King” in Agost (Alicante) in December, there are around 150 Moor and Christian celebrations around Spain. Of course, it’s hard to get to them all, so just stick to the ones in Alicante at the height of the festivities, from the 22nd to the 24th of April. Dancing, mock battles, fireworks, parties—this has it all.
- Festival de los Patios Cordobeses / The Cordoba Patio Festival –
Takes place in May in Cordoba, Andalucia. Taking place for centuries now, this festival recreates the pilgrimage of the conquering of Virgin of the Linares Sanctuary. Traveling over the country in coaches that are extravagantly decorated and accompanied by men on horseback, you’ll also witness the competition of Mary Crosses and a Patio, Iron Grille and Balcony Contest where amazing floral decorations win the day.
- Hogueras de San Juan –
Takes place from June 20 to June 29 in Alicante, Valencia. This festive time takes place around the shortest night of the year to celebrate the triumph of light over dark. The rituals all center around sun, fire and water and can be seen in the work of Baroja. Young girls decorate their balconies with branches and leaves, sitting there where they are serenaded by young men. There are also pilgrimages taking place, effigies being burnt and a feast of San Juan. Be sure to listen to the ‘sanjuanera’ songs as they are sung.
- Dia de Santiago –
Takes place on July 25 in Santiago de Compostela, Galicia. This national holiday celebrates the patron saint of Spain. Expect fireworks and parades across the country and even a televised national mass. Don’t miss this one!
- Fiestas de Haro in La Rioja –
Takes place throughout the entire summer but really comes to a head on June 29th, el Dia de San Pedro. Be sure to visit the Riscos de Bilibio and take part in the world famous wine battle!
- Romeria Vikinga –
Takes place on August 3rd in Pontevedra, Galicia. This recreation of the Viking’s invasion of the Torres de Oeste is faithfully defended by the native Christians still to this day. Following the “battle”, the entire population drinks red wine from the Ulla River and chows down on tons of seafood—all free of charge. Stick around for dancing and folklore afterward, but be prepared to participate!
Author Bio – Alexandre Belaire writes occasionally for locationvoitureespagne.fr, a premier car rental price comparison travel portal for car hire in Malaga, Spain. To figure out the best way to see the most cultural Spanish events, do get in touch with him today to help you out with cheap car rentals in Spain.