University of Barcelona
February 4, 2019

University of Barcelona
February 4, 2019

¡Hola y bienvenidos a mi nuevo blog! The topic of today’s post is ‘National Holidays in Barcelona’. As a part of the ‘communidad autónoma’ of Catalonia, there are several holiday tradations which are unique to Barcelona and the surrounding area. These traditions often have their roots in legend and ancient belief, but they are still enjoyed by locals and visitors alike today.

A menudo las fiestas parecen estrambóticas y escalofriantes, particularmente para los extranjeros. La manifestación cultural más alarmante de todas es el correfoc. Es un grupo de individuos disfrazados de diablos, quien arrasan las calles bailando, tocando tambores, y lanzando fuegos artificiales. El correfoc aparece en varias festividades catalanas, incluso las ‘Fiestas de la Mercad’, que es una fiesta oficial religiosa de la ciudad.

 

El correfoc invade las calles para celebrar la festividad de la Virgen de la Merced

Another tradition in Catalonia is the unique celebration of St George’s Day, or ‘Diada de Sant Jordi’ as it is known in Catalan. The celebration is akin to Valentine’s Day in other countries, as gifts are exchanged between partners. However, this is where the similarities stop and the Catalan individuality shines through. Rather than exchanging chocolates and cards, traditionally boys give girls a red rose, whilst girls give boys a book. It comes as no surprise then, that each year on the 23rd April the streets of Barcelona awash with flower and book stalls, with more than 1.5 million of each being sold on this day alone each year. As a result, the day is colloquially referred to as the ‘El Dia de la Rosa’ and ‘El Dia del Llibre’ in Catalan, or ‘The Day of the Rose’ and ‘The Day of the Book’ in English.

 

A street in Barcelona jam packed with locals buying a rose or a book for their loved ones

Sin embargo, las celebraciones extrañas no se detienen ahí; otro atractivo es los Castells. Básicamente, son las torres humanas que se construyen durante los festivales catalanes, y también en las Baleares y en la Comunidad Valenciana. Los Castells tienen una estructura muy específica: primeramente ‘la pinya’, que es el cimiento del Castell. Después, una vez que ‘la pinya’ esté estable, ‘los castellers’ ascienden para crear los pisos, mientras una banda toca ‘EL Toc de Castells’. ¡Este espectáculo verdaderamente impresionante!

El numero de récord de pisos impresionante es diez

We can’t look at celebrations in Barcelona without mentioning The National Day of Catalonia. Unlike the other celebrations we’ve seen, this is much more mournful and politically motivated. It’s an annual festival which commemorates the subsequent loss of Catalan institutions and laws after Barcelona fell during the Spanish War of Succession on 11th September 1714. Nowadays, the day is associated with the Catalan independence movement. The most vocal factions of society who support the cause, such as nationalist groups, hold protest marches and host traditional Catalan events. It serves as an opportunity to remember those who lost their lives in the fight, as well as to celebrate and preserve Catalan culture.

 

Nationalist pride on display during a march on 11th September

Por último, Barcelona es una ciudad muy orgullosa que simboliza el sentimiento de la región catalana entera. Las celebraciones son locura y única, pero son un aspecto importante de la cultura. Espero que hayáis disfrutado sabiendo de las fiestas nacionales en Barcelona- ¡Adiós!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Las Fiestas Nacionales en Barcelona

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