San Juan Festival in Spain La Noche de San Juan is one of the many festivals that happen in Spain throughout the year. On the night of the summer solstice, June. 23rd, Spain has a tradition unlike any other. It is a very special event that takes place, originating from Pagan beliefs and superstitions. The night consists of people coming together and celebrating by building bonfires and enjoying fireworks, music, good food and dancing all night long. The bonfires are symbolic of the light being stronger than the dark and are said to create power for the sun and rid bad experiences from the year. People cleanse themselves by throwing old items they wish to be rid of such as paperwork, and homework as well as jump over the fires. These celebrations happen all over Spain including Madrid, Barcelona, Valencia, Alicante and Granada. Each city has their own special customs, but the parties are always fun, lasting all night long.
If you’re going to be in Valencia, Alicante, Barcelona or any other costal city, you will find that the celebrations will take place on the beach. The beaches are full of people celebrating, partying, and watching the fireworks in the sky. These beach celebrations are known to be the biggest in the country. You will definitely not want to miss this!
If you are interested in other beaches closer to Madrid, check out this blog!
Granada has other traditions. Instead of fire, there are huge water fights that take place in the streets of Lanjarón. The people of Granada find anything they can to use as ‘weapons’ such as hoses, water balloons, and water guns. They finish the celebration with traditional Spanish ham. What a fun way to cool off in the hot summer sun!
Lastly, in the capital city of Madrid there are other celebrations for San Juan in several different locations of the city. The more traditional celebrations have been in the Retiro park, a major park in the city center. In more recent years, the La Latina neighborhood also has hosted a San Juan party in the city center.
If you would like to know more about the Retiro neighborhood, check out this blog! http://www.madrideasy.com/30693/
So no matter where you are in Spain, there will be sometime special going on in your area during the shortest night of the year. Be sure to check it out, you don’t want to miss this very traditional San Juan festival!