Christmas time is just around the corner. Traditions, celebration, gifts and Christmas cheer are some of the things that make this a magical time of year.
Without experiencing it Spain might not seem like the place to spend a traditional Christmas, however, a Spanish Christmas holds many of the same traditions as other Western countries and many customs of its own. Spanish people look forward to the season, with its traditional Christmas markets and the magical atmosphere surrounding them, you will find a country transformed for the occasion. Christmas decorations, twinkling lights and sweet Christmas treats entice visitors of all ages – the young and the young at heart!
Spend Christmas in Spain, where we look forward to hosting you and helping you uncover all that Spain has to offer. We can organise and personalise your trip so that you get exactly what you want and a little more, after all this is the season of treats and surprises.
Christmas in Spain gets off to a rather peculiar and unofficial start on Dec. 22nd with the draw for the Christmas Lottery, which is likely, the most followed Spanish lottery of the entire year.
The next big day is Christmas Eve the 24th when people get together with their loved ones. On Christmas Day families get together around a table to enjoy traditional dishes such as lamb and sea bream along with seasonal desserts such as turrón (rich sweet made with almonds), polvorones (crumbly shortbread) and marzipan – of course there’s always the option of turkey and ham if you prefer.
December 28th is a fun-filled day when people are in high spirits. During the Day of the Santos Inocentes people play pranks similar to those of April Fools’ Day. Even the news channels often join the party by publishing shocking and unbelievable news to tease the population.
Sol Square – A magical place to visit during Christmas with sparkling lights and markets.
People say goodbye to the year with the New Year’s Eve (referred to as Noche Vieja by the locals) celebrations on December 31st. To truly become part of the celebration and impress the locals, don’t forget to buy 12 grapes in advance. Why? According to Spanish tradition, everyone has to eat one grape in time with the striking of the clock at midnight. If you manage to eat them all on time, you will have a New Year full of luck. Join the celebration at the Puerta del Sol Square in Madrid, where you can follow the clock until New Year and be part of the party atmosphere on the streets of Madrid. In different cities and towns just head to the main squares where you will find people ready to welcome you into their celebration.
Something to guarantee the smiles on children’s faces is the Three Kings Parade held on January 5th. In Spain it is the three Wise Men of the East, Melchoir, Caspar and Balthazar, who bring Christmas presents to children who have been good all year round! Three Kings Parades, with their page-boys, camels and all kinds of weird and wonderful characters, make their way through the streets of villages, towns and cities all over Spain. After the parade and a long journey, the Wise Men are tire and hungry; kids and parents leave food and drinks out for them before going to bed at night. The following morning kids wake up early to discover gifts and blessings left by the Wise Men.
You will find something interesting to do every day over the Christmas holidays. Make sure to include a visit to one of the many living cribs (Nativity scene with real people) that are found in villages and towns around Spain. In the cities, some of the biggest brands take part in this tradition and put up their own living cribs – which in some cases end up being as big as the brands itself! Wandering around the cities’ streets will give you a great opportunity to enjoy the Christmas atmosphere and decorations. Some of the main roads are often closed to the traffic for the occasion and become walkways filled with life and Christmas joy (if you are in Madrid make sure to head to the Gran Via for an extraordinary experience). With so many traditional street markets that often extend their opening hours during these days, you also have a great excuse to go shopping for the perfect gifts.
There are many celebratory dates in the Spanish Christmas season’s calendar, immerse yourself in Spain’s deep-rooted and fun-filled customs with LUGAREX.
To discover some of the best things you can do in Spain during the upcoming Christmas season, click on ‘Contact Us’.