The start of the year sees several religious festivals and saints days in the beautiful city of Barcelona. On 5th January the important procession of the Three Kings takes place. This is a very popular local event and tradition and involves the arrival of the glorious trio by boat. A big crowd gathers on the steps at the harbour to watch the boat arrive and view the fireworks and fog horns that are let off upon their first sighting. There is even a 21 gun salute as a welcome to the boat and its passengers. Once on dry land the three kings lead a procession around the city. The procession goes past a number of the city’s most important monuments and culminates in the fountain of Montjuïc that is beautifully flood lit for the occasion. The Cabalgata los Reyes Magos is a much anticipated event by the residents of Barcelona each year.
A few days later on 21st January another important event takes place. The Tres Tombs Festival is held in honour of St Anthony, the patron saint of animals. There are horse processions and even blessings of animals that take place during the festival. The majority of the events take place in the Sant Andreu district of the city and there is no doubt it is an experience not to be missed.
In February the city of Barcelona enjoys the spectacle that is the carnival. Traditionally this was the last chance for people to go wild before an austere lent kicked in, but now it is just a chance to go wild. It was banned for several years by Franco but now it is back and growing in size year after year. The party culminates in La Gran Rua de Carneval (where else!) and here there are always floats, fireworks and a large procession.
If you are lucky enough to be visiting Barcelona in the next couple of months then make sure you enjoy some of the festivals and saints days that will be taking place. They are really just large street parties and therefore offer fantastic days out. Everyone are welcome to enjoy these events as they are by no means just for local residents to enjoy. Tourists and holiday makers are more than welcome to join in with the singing, dancing and festivities!