No one knows how to celebrate and party quite like a Spaniard, and the country’s rich and diverse offering of festivals that run through the year is a true testament to this fact. Regardless of when and where you are travelling in Spain, we recommend partaking in a festival to immerse yourself in the culture of celebration and enjoy it like a local. The good thing is that festivals in Spain run throughout the year and celebrate everything from music to food to religion and more. So whatever you’re interested in, you are bound to find something that excites you. Here is our round-up of some of the best Spanish festivals that everyone should experience during their lifetime.
When it comes to festivals in Spain, the options are endless. Regardless of which season you are visiting in, you are bound to find or stumble across some sort of festival and celebration. If you are keen to experience some of the major festivals we have listed here, it is important to plan your trip and itinerary in advance, to make arrangements like flights, hotels and even tickets. It’s time to stop dreaming and start doing – visit us at your closest SOTC brand, and we will help you make your dream of experiencing festivities in Spain a reality with wide range of Spain tour packages.
Also known as the world’s largest food fight, La Tomatina is one of the most iconic festivals in Spain. It has been featured in many movies and written about in many books, but we highly recommend experiencing this friendly food fight first-hand, to understand what the hype is truly about. It takes place in August every year in the small town of Bunol, where participants gather from around the country and world to throw over-ripe tomatoes at each other and have a good time. Given this Spanish festival’s popularity, tickets are limited in number and sell out fairly quickly, so we recommend booking them as soon as possible to ensure that you do not miss out!
Flamenco is one of the most popular art forms in Spain, originating in the south of the country. It is extremely exciting and engaging to watch, as it features a mix of singing, dancing, guitar playing, clapping and finger snapping, along with vibrant costumes that add to the grandeur of it all. There are many flamenco festivals that take place throughout the country, where you can watch the shows and even learn the basics from professionals. Suma Flamenca in Madrid is one of the best, taking place in the summertime and featuring an endless array of performances that take place over the course of a month.
The Spaniards love music and as a result, there are many music festivals in Spain that cater to all genres and tastes. Primavera Sound is one of the biggest and most prominent ones, taking place at the end of spring and the start of summer in the capital of the Catalan region, Barcelona. It explores a range of genres, including pop rock and electronic dance music, and has featured some huge international bands and artists in the past, including Arcade Fire, Sonic Youth, Wu-Tang Clan, Radiohead and The White Stripes. Tickets sell out very, very quickly so make sure you keep an eye out for release dates and snap yours up as soon as possible!
Food and drink is a quintessential part of Spanish culture, and they love to celebrate it whenever possible. Given the availability of fresh seafood in this Mediterranean country, their seafood dishes are some of the best in the world, often cooked with simple ingredients to let the fresh flavours shine through. In October every year, the O Grove Seafood Festival takes place in Galicia, and features seafood markets, cooking competitions, eating competitions and cooking demonstrations. If you’re visiting Spain during autumn, we recommend adding this to your itinerary – it is the food experience of a lifetime!
Also known as the Seville Fair, this event begins a couple of weeks after Easter week and runs for six days. Every day of the festival kicks off with a fantastic parade that features numerous carriages, as people make their way to the major bullring in Seville, where fighters and breeders interact. The fair also features an amusement park which is a great place to take children, with many rides, games and attractions to feast your eyes on. But the best part of the festival is the partying, which kicks off after dinner every night and continues till the early hours of the morning.
The changing of the year is a major event regardless of where in the world you might be, but in Barcelona, it is celebrated with unique gusto. It goes without saying that the restaurants, bars, lounges and night clubs in the city are buzzing with energy on this special night – but the true celebration happens at Montjuic. Every year, crowds will gather at the fountains in Montjuic to watch a spectacular display of fireworks that carries on for almost half an hour. Along with that, locals will indulge in the tradition of eating twelve grapes at midnight – one with each bell toll – as they believe that it will bring them good luck in the new year. If you are in Barcelona during the winter, celebrating New Year’s Even at Montjuic should definitely be on your list of things to do.